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Ben Ball (World) Warriors

Ben Ball warriors are shining (or are ready to shine) in the world stage. Across the Pond Dragovic has been tearing it up. From Bruin Basketball Report:

UCLA forward Nikola Dragovic grabbed nine rebounds and added six points, including two clutch free throws down the stretch, to help Serbia to an 87-78 win over Spain in the finals of the U20 European Championship.

In eight games, Dragovic averaged 12.1 points on 48.6% shooting and 5.4 rebounds a game. He also shot a sizzling 45.2% from three-point distance. The Bruin sophomore scored a game-high 21 points in the semifinal game against Italy.

Dragovic is part of a nucleus that has also captured the 2003 U16, 2005 U18 and 2006 U20 championships for Serbia.

"I don't think anybody can beat us. And we're going to eventually show it in the senior team as well," said Dragovic.

"I feel absolutely wonderful. It's not every day you win a title of any championship. The U20 European Championship Men is just one step below the senior national team. I have so many emotions and it's hard to talk right now," added Serbian coach Vlada Vukoicic.

Dragovic is expected to challenge for significant playing time in Westwood this season.
It will be very interesting to see how Dragovic fits into Coach Howland’s early season rotation this coming season. It is very encouraging to see him being so productive in the world stage. It sure looks like he wasn’t hampered at all by lack of playing time this past season. I don’t think it’d be a stretch to speculate the coaching he has received from Coach Howland and his staff on defense and fundamentals have been paying off for him back home. If he comes back in shape and ready to play some defense, I can see him carving out a role in Howland’s squad this coming season.

Meanwhile, on this side of the Pond, it looks like the idea of two Bruins playing in the Mexican national team may not be all that far fetched. Matta may be suiting up for Red, White & Green:
Mexico seems to have been able to convince UCLA’s Lorenzo Matta to join the squad. Coach Nolan Richardson is, however, unwilling to discuss the status of NBA players Eduardo Najera and Earl Watson. With the two NBA players on the roster, Mexico can be a force to reckon with, without them they are a talented team, but one unable to beat the best in this tournament. The way Richardson refuses to answer questions about his stars has me believing that both will be no-shows at Vegas.
I’d be very interested to see how this shakes out. Can’t imagine the defensive intensity of a team featuring Earl and Lorenzo.