I’m a big fan of Aalborg Vikings and also a big fan of Sami Eleraky. I would like this thread to become the Big Sami Eleraky thread and I will try to answer all questions you have regarding Sami Eleraky in the hope that when Sami moves to USA you will answer all of my questions.
I have already seen some threads about Sami containing some questions so I will start by answering them here:
How good is he and how good is the Danish league?
Well obviously that is a very difficult question to answer. From what I have been told Sami started playing basketball at the age of 14-15 and now he is 18/19 so obviously he is still a prospect and a bit inexperienced.
That being said the last two years Sami has played in the top basketball league in Denmark. It is a semi-pro league and probably one of the lowest ranked top-leagues in all of Europe. Each team is allowed to have two non-European players on their team (usually Americans). This year Aalborg Vikings players where Ryan White and Tony Bishop from Texas State. Ryan White led the league in scoring and Tony Bishop in rebounding and that probably says something about the league.
The best player to ever come out of Denmark (which by the way is a small country with 5 mil. inhabitants - the main sport is soccer and actually we only have 10.000 players in total) is Christian Drejer who played for Florida and also got drafted in the 2nd round by the Nets. Also playing in the Danish league this year is the top 2 ranked 1994’er of all of Europe Rasmus Glarbjerg Larsen (source: eurohopes.com). Glarbjerg is a 7footer like Sami but is a Nowitzki/Bargnani kind of player and most Danes are sure he will soon be headed to either a big team in Europe or one of the top schools in USA and then head for the NBA draft. Another dane playing in the NCAA is 6'7 Jonathan Gilling from 1991 playing Arizona State - he averaged 15ppg, 4.5 rpg and 3 apg in the 10/11 season and playing 24 minuttes he is averaging 7.1 ppg, 1.8 rpg and 1,7apg.
I would say Sami is a legit 6’11 – closer to 7’0 than 6'10 weighing 240/250 with a pretty good wingspan (can’t find any official measurements of his wingspan). As you can see on the highlights below he runs the floor very well for his size. He mostly gets his points on open dunks and lay-ups. But he also has a couple of moves down low including a nice little baby hook and he is already developing a pretty solid jumpshot (though it can’t be seen in any of the highlights). He is shooting 60 % from the free throw line.
He averaged 5.8 rebounds per game, including 2.4 offensive boards (17th in league). He also had 0.9 blocks per game which was actually the 10th best in the league. Despite playing 25 minutes per game and being one of the youngest players in the league he only averaged 2.6 fouls per game and only 1.1 turnovers per game.
Most of the year Sami has been matched up against lower division1 American import players (all being players who have played at least 4 years of college basketball) so he knows how to play physical and how to compete on a higher level but also he is definitely not a player who is used to the offense being revolved about him.
So what he can give your team in his first year would probably mainly be size, athleticism, rebounding and post defence.
Can he speak English?
Almost everybody in Denmark speaks English fluently. Sami also speaks Arabic.
This is footage from what is considered the best nationally televised game in Denmark this year. Do yourself a favor and watch the full footage:
01:15 turnaround jumpshot (slowmotion 01:19)
02:04 postmove (slowmotion)
Footage from same game (nationally televised): http://www.dk4sport.dk/video/index.php?play=true&id=286
Stats from 11/12 season in Denmark:
Finished 2nd in the Youn Player of the Year category and was also selected as All Star but couldn’t play due to minor injury.
Stats from U18 division B – Denmark finished 2nd
Post game videointerview: (you probably don't understand a word he says)