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Abbotsford’s Marek Klassen invited to Canada Basketball camp

Klassen one of 17 players trying out for spot on FIBA Americup 2022 team
Abbotsford’s Marek Klassen is trying out for a spot to wear the red and white at the FIBA AmeriCup 2022. (Ben Lypka/Abbotsford News)

Abbotsford’s Marek Klassen is one of 17 players participating in the Canada Basketball Senior Men’s National Team FIBA Americup 2022 training camp.

The camp runs from Aug. 22 to 25 in Victoria and will choose the team to compete at the FIBA AmeriCup 2022 in Recife, Brazil from Sept. 2 to 11.

Klassen is one of two B.C. products at the camp, with the other being Kelowna’s Grant Shephard, who is a former teammate of Klassen on the Fraser Valley Bandits. Fans of the Bandits will also recognize forward Thomas Kennedy, who played on the team in 2022.

The 30-year-old Klassen recently completed his fourth season with the Langley-based Bandits. He appeared in 10 games and averaged 10.6 points, 6.7 assists and 3.3 rebounds per game in Canadian Elite Basketball League action. He also shot 40 per cent from the field and 93.8 per cent from the free throw line.

Klassen and the Bandits were eliminated in the playoffs by the Guelph Nighthawks on Aug. 4.

Prior to his time this season with the Bandits, Klassen finished up a strong season playing for Czarni Slupsk in the Polish Basketball League.

Over 41 games played, Klassen averaged 13.7 points, 6.6 assists, 3.6 rebounds and 31.4 minutes per game for Czarni, who finished atop the league with a regular season record of 23-7. Klassen led Czarni in three-pointers made and attempted, nailing 116-of-303 attempts (38.3 per cent).

Klassen, who was the club’s captain, finished first in the league in assists, second in three-pointers made, fifth in points and 12th in steals.

He has also played professionally in Sweden, Ukraine, Turkey, Great Britain and Romania.

RELATED: Abbotsford’s Klassen signs with Turkish Basketball League team

He is a former B.C. provincial player of the year and was named the B.C. AAA high school tournament’s most valuable player when he helped lead the Yale Lions to a provincial title in 2010.

Following high school he played for the San Diego-based Point Loma Sea Lions where he was one of the top point guards and three-point shooters in the NAIA. He graduated from that school with an MBA.

Canada is in Group A and will face hosts Brazil (Sept. 2), Uruguay (Sept. 3), and Colombia (Sept. 5) in the group phase. The two best finishers in each group as well as the two best third-place teams in the competition will move on to the quarterfinals.

Canada went 3-1 to finish atop Group C in the FIBA AmeriCup 2022 Qualifiers to successfully qualify for the event.

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RELATED: Abbotsford’s Marek Klassen returns to Fraser Valley Bandits

Ben Lypka

About the Author: Ben Lypka

I joined the Abbotsford News in 2015.
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