2 Derwin Kitchen (Ironi Nahariya) (photo: Adrian Herbsztein)
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Kitchen cooking in FIBA Europe Cup debut; earns Top Performer honors

MUNICH (FIBA Europe Cup) - Derwin Kitchen snatched up Top Performer honors in his FIBA Europe Cup debut after Ironi Nahariya switched competitions and transferred to the Round of 16 from the Basketball Champions League.

The 30-year-old American all-round guard, who had been in a season-long shooting slump in international play, finally got the monkey off his back and converted 10-of-14 attempts from the field en route to a season-high 23 points.

Kitchen also grabbed 8 rebounds, dished out 8 assists and came up with 3 steals, helping the Nahariya side celebrate a 96-75 victory in the first leg of the Play-Off tie against Gaziantep with an overall ranking of 36.

In the last five international games combined, the player had scored just 8 points, making 3-of-29 shots from the field. His overall field goal percentage in the Basketball Champions League was only 23% this season.

Talking about spectacular entrances, CSM CSU Oradea's guard Muhamed Pasalic will also be quite content with his own debut in the competition. The 29-year-old player from Bosnia and Herzegovina collected 25 points, 4 rebounds and 5 assists in an 82-72 victory against Muratbey Usak Sportif in Romania.

Meanwhile, the two-man Elan Chalon combo of playmaker John Roberson and forward Cameron Clark is already a well-known entity in the FIBA Europe Cup. Both stars of the French club were hard at work again this week in a 99-78 win against Kormend.

Roberson was feeling it from beyond the arc and scored 26 points on 7-of-11 shooting from three-point range, also grabbing 3 boards and handing out 7 dimes in the process, while Clark chipped in with an equally impressive performance of 27 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals.

Pau-Lacq-Orthez big man Alain Koffi is the only player on the Top Performers line-up who couldn't help his side start the Round of 16 with a win. Certainly to no fault of his own, though.

The experienced 33-year-old center double-doubled with 15 points, 11 rebounds, a steal and a block, but the French side slumped to a 95-86 loss against Telenet Oostende in Belgium.