By the time three Euro-Nets arrive at the PNY Center in East Rutherford to begin training camp on October 1, they may have already played the equivalent of a quarter-season in Europe. That's how grueling the FIBA Eurobasket preparations and tournament can be.
Mirza Teletovic (Bosnia), Toko Shengelia (Georgia) and Bojan Bogdanovic (Croatia) are all leaders of their teams in the FIBA competition and if things go well, they could wind up playing as many as 11 games in Slovenia, where the bi-annual tournament is held this year. Eurobasket begins September 4 and ends September 22, eight days before the start of training camp.
Before the tournament, each team plays a full slate of "friendly" or exhibition games around the continent, adding as many as nine games ... in multiple locations.
Croatia on Monday released its schedule and assuming Bogdanovic does sign with the Nets in July, as expected, he's likely to spend a lot of his time between airport lounges and arenas from the end of July to the end of September.
Here's Croatia's schedule which is typical of national teams...
Preparations start on July 20 with training at Sveti Martin, a Croatia resort town. That lasts a week. Then, following roster cutdown, the team moves to Slavonski Brod and more advanced training from August 1 through 8 August, concluding with two "friendly" games vs. Macedonia on August 7 and 8.
The next week, the team travels to a "friendly" tournament in Strasbourg, France, where they will play against France, Germany and Greece. Then its back to Croatia, this time for training in the seaside resort of Dubrovnik, where they will play two matches against Montenegro on August 15 and 16, and two more against Latvia on August 18 and 19. Four days later, they open play in another "friendly" tournament, this time in Istanbul, Turkey, on August 23 and 25, playing Turkey, Belgium and Serbia.
Then, one more trip back to Croatia for final preparations in Crikvenica August 26 to September 2 before traveling up the Adriatic coast to Slovenia for the start of Eurobasket (and games every other day) starting September 4. The top eight teams in the tournament play 11 games.
And somewhere in there, he's got to find time to sign his Nets contract!
Croatia Announce Preliminary Squad - FIBA Europe