These are the dog days of summer when the NBA news cycle typically consists of chatter about players putting in long hours working out or guys throwing down sick dunks on inner city playgrounds across the country. <
But across the pond there is competitive basketball still being played at the 2013 EuroBasket Qualifier.
And that is where a handful of incoming NBA rookies and already-drafted prospects are getting major run as they build their hoops resume.
As the stats have shown and sites like BallinEurope have broken down, guys like the Brooklyn Nets' Mirza Teletovic (Bosnia and Herzegovina) and Tornike Shengelia (Georgia) are not only representing their respective countries trying to qualify for EuroBasket but are showcasing their skills for what is to come in Brooklyn.
In six games for Bosnia and Herzegovina, Mirza Teletovic (right) is averaging 25.7 points and 6.2 rebounds a game, while Shengelia has gone for 15.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, 1.2 blocks and is shooting 60 percent from the field in five games.
The same can be said for center Tibor Pleiss (Germany, OKC Thunder), point guard Tomas Satoransky (Czech Republic, Washington Wizards) and swingman Adam Hanga (Hungary, San Antonio).
Pleiss is toying with near double-double figures (11.8 ppg and 8.4 rpg in five games), Satoransky is giving opposing teams fits (9.3 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 5.3 apg in five games) and Hanga's production at shooting guard (18.8 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 2.4 steals, 55 percent from the field in five games) is enough to make Gregg Popovich proudly pop another bottle of wine.
But is anyone paying attention?
For those looking for their basketball fix with NBA training camp still a couple months away, keeping tabs on these rookies competing on the international scene is worth the time and will easily fend off the yawning.
It sure beats checking the price tag on those funky Shaquille O'Neal paintings that are for sale.