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Barcelona basketball lands North Pole's Oleson in big trade

Van Williams | Alaska Sports Hall of FameAlaska Sports Hall of Fame
University of Alaska Nanooks photo

North Pole’s Brad Oleson is on the move. The all-star shooting guard this week was aquired by European power Barcelona in a trade with Caja Laboral in a blockbuster deal in the Spanish League.

Playing for Barcelona is like suiting up for the Yankees, Lakers or Cowboys. His new deal is reported to be for three years.

Oleson, of UAF fame, is a double threat who can beat you with his jump shot or his defense. The 6-foot-3 player is quick, durable and efficient.

In the Spanish League, he averaged 10.2 points in 19 games with Caja Laboral. Last season the eighth-year pro finished second in the league in 3-point shooting percentage at nearly 50 percent.

This year he is averaging 7.1 points in 15 Euroleague games, with seven games in double figures highlighted by a season high of 15.

Oleson, 30, ranks second in the Euroleague top 16 in 3-point percentage [60%, 9-15].

Barcelona has won three Euroleague titles since 2009 and is currently the three-time defending Spanish League champion.

Oleson’s first game with his new club is Thursday in the Euroleague when Barcelona faces Montepaschi Siene of Italy.

Van Williams, a 20-year local sports writer and the former sports editor of the Anchorage Daily News, writes about the athletic exploits of Alaskans for the Alaska Sports Hall of Fame. He can be reached at alaskasportshall@yahoo.com.