Aug 15

Around The World: Sabas Edition Part Deux

By DHawes22 Posted in: arvydassabonis, Blazers
More Sabas? You better believe it! One around The World just wasn't enough to contain the massive amounts of content that was Arvydas Sabonis' Hall of Fame enshrinement. In this latest edition, enjoy Mike Barrett and Mike Rice's take on Sabas' importance to Portland, find out just how dominant he would have been had he played his entire career in the NBA, re-watch his induction speech and more. And always remember, he's not YOUR-Vdyas. He's not MY-Vydas. He's Arvydas!

August 15

Trailblazers.tv: Arvydas Sabonis Hall Of Fame Induction Speech

Trailblazers.tv: Arvydas Sabonis On The Red Carpet

Trailblazers.tv: Sabonis Thoughts From Brian Wheeler

Trail Blazers: Photo gallery: Arvydas Sabonis Through The Years

Trail Blazers: The Arvydas We Knew
"In his first season the Blazers weren’t quite sure how to use him. In his first 56 games , he led the Blazers in scoring only once. He had 23 points against the Bulls in November. In those 56 games the Blazers were 10 games under .500 at 23-33. Then they had a team meeting and everyone was told that their new center, who was the best passer and most unselfish player on the team, would be the No. 1 option in the half court offense. Arvydas in the last 26 games led the team in scoring ten times and in assists ten times. It was no coincidence that the team finished out the string 20-6 and the season 44-38. Sabonis had saved the season, and he became the darling of Portland."

Trail Blazers: The Sabonis Reunion Tour
"Buck Williams told Eggers, “He was a guard locked in a big man’s body. When you played with Sabonis, it was like Magic Johnson, where you have to watch out or he’d hit you in the head with a pass.”"

Basketball Prospectus: Sabonis On A Level Playing Field
"Because of the many different career paths possible, this is hardly a guarantee that Sabonis would have been a shoo-in Hall of Famer had he played a full NBA career, but it does seem to suggest that. The most impressive thing is that, given his knee injuries, the young Sabonis was probably a better player than his performance in his 30s would suggest. Suffice it to say Sabonis was a special player."

Blazersedge: Transcript and Video: Blazers C Arvydas Sabonis Naismith Basketball Hall Of Fame Induction Speech
"Thank you, Bill. Thank you. Today is a very special day for me. For my country. And I'm very proud to be here. I would like to say thank you for the Hall of Fame, for my family, whole family, my parents, my friends, my teammates, my coaches. Special thanks I would like to say for Portland Trail Blazers and Blazers medical team for believing in me and helping me after serious injury when I got to come back to professional basketball. To be Olympic champion and to be tonight here together with Bill Walton and all of you, thank you very much."

Blazersedge: VIDEOS: Blazers C Arvydas Sabonis At The Naismith Basketball Hall Of Fame Induction
"Here's the video that played prior to Sabonis' speech. It includes footage from Sabonis' time overseas as well as his time in Portland and includes a cameo from former Blazers executive Bob Whitsitt. "

Oregon Live: Blazers Top 40: No. 20 Arvydas Sabonis was still a force even after his prime
"It was a shame he couldn't have come and played 10 years earlier for the organization because the Blazers probably would have won a championship," former teammate Damon Stoudamire said."

ESPN: 10 Inducted Into 2011 Hall Of Fame
"Sabonis, a dominant player in Europe long before he finally came from his native Lithuania to the NBA at 31, was presented by Bill Walton, who had described the versatile center as a "7-foot-3 Larry Bird." Later came the enshrinement of Gilmore, an ABA champion who went on to make six All-Star teams in the NBA, where he is still the league's career leader with a .599 field-goal percentage."

SBNation: Arvydas Sabonis' International Success Lands Him In Basketball Hall Of Fame
"Sabonis' talent, Lithuania's heart-bursting story of post-Cold War revival and an odd partnership with the Grateful Dead spurred the team's popularity, and eventually helped Sabonis transition to the NBA. (The Dead sponsored Lithuania in 1992, with the team wearing tie-dyed jerseys to the Olympics. It was a raging success, and they renewed the sponsorship in 1996. The band also raised money for Lithuanian charities in the process.) "

Euroleague: Sabonis walks tall into hall of fame
"Sabonis was equally as impressive at the club level. After leaving Zalgiris, he played in Spain for Valladolid and Real Madrid, leading the latter to back-to-back Spanish League crowns and the 1995 Euroleague title. He then played several seasons in the NBA before coming back home to Zalgiris for the 2003-04 campaign, for which he earned All-Euroleague First Team honors. Today he serves as team president for Zalgiris. Last year, Sabonis was inducted into the FIBA Hall of Fame and in 2008 was named by the Euroleague as one of the 50 greatest contributors to the first 50 years of European club basketball. One of 10 players and coaches inducted in the 2011 hall of fame class, Sabonis will forever be considered among greatest centers in basketball history. "

Fox Sports Ohio: Justice served in Sabonis induction
"Sabonis was so good that Atlanta took a chance on him with the No. 77 pick in the 1985 draft — despite knowing Soviet authorities likely wouldn't allow him to join the NBA. Turned out the Hawks were right, but it actually was the NBA that shot them down. Sabonis was just 20 at a time when the league's age minimum was 21."


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