French coach counts on De Colo


As the French national team continues its play at Eurobasket 2011, San Antonio Spurs’ Tony Parker has been playing at a high level enough to be considered the MVP of the tournament. He has steadied the ship for France as the team looks to punch its ticket to the 2012 London games.

But as much as Parker is important to the squad, should Parker not be able to get on the court for France, head coach Vincent Collet knows he can count on Spurs 2009 draftee Nando De Colo.

So far I have been going to Nando (De Colo) to replace Tony because he has been doing a good job and I think he is playing better now that he has had some minutes at the point guard position because he likes to run the ball so the position suits him.

For the tournament De Colo is avergaing 5.5 points, 2.0 rebounds, and 0.8 assists including a 21-point scoring outburst against Lithuania. And while he is playing decent for France in the tournament, the question remains – is he ready to come to the NBA and join the Spurs?

He does show flashes of a solid point guard but lacks the foot-speed needed in the NBA and his assist averages are low for a point guard. Granted he is playing behind Parker in the tournament so that could be affecting his stats but looking at what he did in Europe, his stats are not glowing.

He shot 33.5% from the field, 27.6% from the three-point line, and 1.6 assists last season in 21.4 minutes.

And with the NBA lockout canceling the Vegas Summer League, that only hindered De Colo’s possible transition into the Spurs.

Thoughts Spurs fans? Think Nando is ready or feel he still needs more time overseas before joining San Antonio.