We Welcome Our New Finnish Overlords


This past weekend was the Nike Hoops Summit, which is something of an opportunity for international and domestic players alike to showcase their skills for NBA scouts. According to ESPN Insider and draft guru Chad Ford, a Flying Finn stole the show. You know, someone from Finland. The country! With all the saunas and sauna competitions (above):

This year’s sleeper was 6-foot-4 point guard Petteri Koponen from Finland.

Koponen got some attention from NBA scouts earlier in the year, and Grizzlies president Jerry West even made a visit to Finland to see him play this season.

Despite being wowed by his poise and fundamentals, scouts wondered whether he has the speed to make it in the pros. On Saturday, against two of the best high school guards in the country (O.J. Mayo and Derrick Rose), Koponen was solid, committing just one turnover and dishing out six assists against constant pressure from the two future NBA lottery picks.

His play caused one prominent NBA GM to remark, “He may be a better fit in the pros than I thought. I’ve been surprised he’s been able to do what he’s done against that competition.”

We’re not positive, but we think this Petteri Koponen is Number Four in the picture above, sitting in between Jaski and Jussi.


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