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Fotu leads New Zealand to FIBA playoffs

Isaac Fotu can extend his stay in Spain for at least a few more days, and that’s a good thing. Well, at least for him and the New Zealand national team.

Fotu scored a game-high 18 points and also grabbed eight rebounds to help lead New Zealand to a 67-65 victory over Finland on the final day of pool-play at the FIBA Basketball World Cup on Thursday at Bilbao, Spain.

The 6-foot-8 junior forward for the University of Hawai’i basketball team shot 7 of 9 from the field, including 1 for 1 from 3-point range. He did not start, but played a team-high 26 minutes.

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With the victory, New Zealand became one of 16 teams to advance to the “knockout” playoffs for the world championship. The “Tall Blacks” will face Lithuania in a round of 16 game on Sunday at 4 a.m. (Hawai’i time) at Madrid, Spain. It will be available live online at www.espn3.com.

“I’m always ready on the bench. If coach gives me two minutes or 20 minutes I just go out there and try and bring energy to the team,” Fotu said in an article by The New Zealand Herald. “I think this is good experience for me personally playing against top teams in the world and I think this will help me with my personal development.”

CLICK HERE to read The New Zealand Herald article

In New Zealand’s previous game, Fotu finished with 10 points and 10 rebounds in a 73-61 victory over Ukraine. New Zealand started the tournament 0-3, and needed to win its final two games of pool-play to advance to the playoffs.

Through five games in the tournament, Fotu is averaging 9.2 points and 5.2 rebounds per game, and leads New Zealand with a .617 field goal percentage.

The extended stay in Spain means more time away from the UH campus for Fotu, but he is expected to join the Warriors shortly after the conclusion of the FIBA World Cup.

(Photo courtesy Basketball New Zealand)

22 Comments

  1. Tonganator:

    Very Proud of Isaac Fotu, your son, and UH MBB fan nation adopted son!
    Isaac the hilite of Tall Blacks, leading scorer, power rebounds, high BBIQ, and calm demeanor, great representative of New Zealand, the Fotu Ohana , UH MBB and Hawaii. We are so very, very proud and happy New Zealand Tall Blacks with Isaac leading the charge made it to the final sixteen in Barcelona. All his team , and coaches, the 808 state of Hawaii, love what he is doing! One of the best young international BB athletes in the world, doing very well!

    Mahalo to Isaac Frotu Fotu, !
    Go The Mighty Warrior, the Mighty Tall Blacks and the UH MBB Rainbow Warriors!
    🙂
    Gib is smiling and all Hawaii is smiling too! UH MBB team very happy, cannot wait for Isaac to finish strong in final sixteen, who knows. win the championship..?
    And come back rest up, and ready to rock the Rock , and SSC to win the BWC!

  2. No matter what happens , good job, great FIBA tournament Isaac Fotu , as you say, it will help your development as a BB athlete tremendously. Man, oh man…. Isaac could be very dominant this junior year. Very special, and with great assortment of good athletes. the ONE OHANA.. nobody, no one, can stop the fight of UH MBB program. Fotu, Nevels, Smith, Negus, Janks, Jovanovich, Jawato, Bobbitt, Fleming, Thomas, Reyes, Valdes, Stepteau, Enos, Filopovich, Buscher ready to Rock The Rock, the SSC and the BWC!
    🙂

  3. “Bro with the Fro” he is known in the Tall Blacks camp… 🙂

    GO THE MIGHTY WARRIORS, and TALL BLACKS with the HAKA

  4. Awesome work Isaac! Way to represent. Every article mentions University of Hawaii when talking about Isaac, so that is great world wide exposure. I really hope this gets other international recruits thinking about following the Fro!

  5. By the way, good job to all of you regular commenters of not feeding the Trolls. See how that works? You ignore them and they don’t have reason to keep answering back with more sillyness. It sure makes the comments enjoyable again.

  6. I agree with u Chuckcheese. Nobody likes a troll

  7. Great job and effort by this young man. I am sure his family is sooo proud and so is his Hawaii ohana. Some good news to brighten the day ! Hope everyone enjoys the moment and appreciates Isaac performance on such a large stage. Imua!

  8. Chuck… I understand,…. I was completely taken in like a fool, on 3 sites…ignore the buggah, they have nobody who will read or respond. Just because this is the G rated and Positive site, which is how we like it. No negativity here, objective, we can critique in a positive way, constructive criticism. however, that no sense non sense, BOTTOM feeder.. waste time.
    And Eagle, you doing great job.. what I do… once I glimpse, that name, quick scroll over.. the buggah, or tita, gal or guy or whatever.. just like that nut case USCB, gone forever..not part of WI UH MBB super fandom!
    🙂
    Words of wisdom Chuck…and even Brokenhearted, told me same thing… now I listen..ignore button!

  9. Back to the good stuff…Chuck, you are right, and on ESPN networks, every shot Is close up of our Frotu, or as Tonganator says, the Tall Blacks team call him “Bro with the Fro!”… Isaac Fotu, from the UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII.. Even Gib was interviewed by NZ press.. he said, Isaac is a great player, far bypassing expectations when he first came. Has potential to be great pro at whatever level he ends up at for long time. I agree..The more confidence Isaac is gaining, and He is such a class guy, like the Fotu family. Great possible international recruiting tool, plus, post UH, Isaac, .. and I cannot think of any other, BWC guys in the FIBA? Only Isaac, Tai Webster, and few others that are currently playing for NCAA college teams. What an HONOR… and once again, constantly mentioning Fotu from The University of Hawaii MBB program. dying? death defying? yes, learn, live on, and fight UH MBB, and The Bro with the Fro!

    Go Bows!
    🙂

  10. Great job Isaac! Don’t worry, the team working hard. They know you are doing the same and expect nothing less of them. You make all Hawaii proud!

  11. Isaac needs to have a goal of being named conference player of year this year. He can seriously do it. See I don’t just say negative things no matter what false accusing trolls like cheese cake say. I simply say what I believe.

  12. PRE-PRACTICE CANDIDATES…

    …”TEAM” GOALS:

    Player-of-Year: Candidates Fotu AND Nevels

    Newcomer-of-Year: Negus and Janks (Potential in Conference)

    ALL-Freshmen Team: Fleming & Sammis…

    INSPIRATIONAL: Dyrbe, Jawato…OR Bobbitt (Keep Tip-of-Spear “In Family”?)

    DO SOME Of This, Championships a Likely By-Product…

    —————-

    TOUGH ROAD (FOR ALL)

    BUT FOTU Keep Improving … 4-2… 2-4

    Went For TWO, Now UP TO FOUR More FIBA WINS

    TONGANATOR & ‘OHANA RULE!

  13. Good job fans…we playing shutdown defense on the opposition!!
    Go Bows!
    Good job Gib..you got some grat student athletes..probably BWC preseason poll not pick you guys top 3
    However when it counts ..win BWC regular and BWC tounament…and go shhhhhhhh!

    Go Rainbow Warriors! !
    🙂
    Chuck..we geev em ..uh mbb support !!

  14. Fear the Fro!! The Bro with the Fro!!
    🙂

  15. Congrats to Isaac! So exciting to constantly be on the look out for the fro…while they do the haka, or on the court! Congratulations to Tonganator and family!

  16. Awesome work, Bro with the Fro! Keep it up! Can’t wait to see you at the Stan Sheriff Center!

  17. Fro missing at least 2 weeks of school.

  18. Believe, that was covered by ncaa provision. If MBB athlete was playing for his country in an international Basketball championship venue. FIBA, World Games, Olympics etc. He would have that waiver, can start school a few weeks later.. Very sure he knows what courses, and school will make sure compliant. So, Isaac will be okay. Fro, knew possibility of missing couple weeks , and MBB program and UH, as well as ncaa allows. So the “Fro” is “Good To Go!”

  19. In this age of instant access from computers, I have to think it’s very possible that Isaac is alreayd signed up for classes and possible that he is even receiving his assignments.

  20. Lookin’ Even Better….

    At the Rate, he’s Improvin’….

    i Think It’s Amazing Isaac Keeps His HIGH Shooting Percentage Every Where…
    Maybe even Gib can’t drop him below ~55%…
    Even As he takes More and More Shots…

    The Greats are Like that…

  21. Eagle. Did u make a negative comment toward Gib? Can’t do that here. Come on now. Ask for forgiveness and I shall grant it.

  22. Eagle…that’s the way! Cheer on Isaac Fotu..on that world stage he is shining lie a true warrior!!
    And super mahalo to Valerie Scmidt and her positive comments about Isaac and Tonganator ohana!!
    🙂
    Isaac going be super this year with one ohana team!!
    Isaac ..still Team guy 3 on 3 world champ..now top 16 team FIBA!!
    🙂
    GREAT COMMENTS EAGLE AND…HE IS VERY GOOD..!!
    GIB big smile.. 🙂
    so happy for his hard working team including Isaac!!
    🙂
    Go Rainbow Warriors! !

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