Oleson on the move in Euroleague (Basketball)

August 27, 2009

Brad OlesonBrad Oleson was involved in a major trade in the Euroleague this week between Spanish League rivals, with the Alaskan going from Real Madrid to Caja Laboral for two guys you’ve probably never heard of – but they are hardly no-names.

Playmaker Pablo Prigioni and captain Sergi Vidal were the two players dealt for Oleson in a blockbuster trade by Euroleague standards. It was the kind of story that might lead SportsCenter, or at least ESPN Deportes.

The North Pole native emerged as one of the Spanish League’s top scorers last season at Alta Gestion Fuenlabrada, where in 32 games he averaged 18.1 points, 2.5 assists and shot 45 percent on 3s.

The highlight of his season had to be when the 6-foot-3 left-hander posterized a much taller defender in what was billed as the No. 3 dunk in this clip.

Just 26, Oleson’s upside is sky high. Which makes this move a bit confusing if you consider that he had signed a longterm deal with Real Madrid earlier this summer. But then the team changed coaches and brought in Ettore Messian, who evidently didn’t think Oleson fit his system and traded him.

Oleson inked a 5-year deal with his new club, which is no Spanish slouch. Caja Laboral used to be known as Tau Ceramica, which advanced to four straight Euroleague Final Fours from 2005 to 2008.

The former NCAA Division II All-American knows plenty about winning. After leading the UAF Nanooks into the Sweet 16, Oleson has enjoyed even more success as a pro. In 2005 he helped Dodge City capture the USBL title and in 2007 he won a championship with Rosalia of the Spanish third division.