Auburn opened their four-game expedition in Israel on Tuesday in dominating fashion, by defeating the Israel U-20 squad, 117-56 in Jerusalem.
Auburn had 13 players see action on Tuesday, with six players reaching double-digits in points, which is a testament to the team’s selflessness says Bruce Pearl.
I think the good thing about our situation is that we’ve got a deep team,” Pearl said. “That’s our strength. Our strength is the fact that we can put 12 guys out there. I thought our kids did a great sharing the minutes and being very unselfish.”
Two key players in Auburn’s win were veteran Dylan Cardwell, and freshman Yohan Traore. Traore scored 20 points in his unofficial Auburn debut, and Pearl is pleased that Auburn fans can now see what kind of player that he is.
“You can see the talent, you can see the upside, you can see his ability to finish and obviously be able to play in space,” Pearl said.
Cardwell scored 12 points and pulled down 14 rebounds in the win. Pearl says that if the NBA does not work out, Cardwell could have a solid future playing professional basketball in Israel.
“(Cardwell) is our spiritual leader,” Pearl said. “He leads Bible study. He walks the walk, not just talking the talk. He lives it. He’s got great passion. I think with his size and the ability to move his feet and rebound – I would love to see him play in Israel one day if he doesn’t make the NBA.”
Auburn’s next contest is set for Sunday against the Israel All-Star select team. Tipoff is set for noon CDT and can be seen on SEC Network.