Petteri Koponen playing for Honka in 2007
|No. 8 – Khimki|
VTB United League
April 13, 1988 |
|Listed height||6 ft 4.5 in (1.94 m)|
|Listed weight||195 lb (88 kg)|
|High school||Mäkelänrinne (Helsinki)|
|NBA draft||2007 / Round: 1 / Pick: 30th overall|
|Selected by the Philadelphia 76ers|
|Pro playing career||2004–present|
Petteri Koponen (born 13 April 1988) is a Finnish professional basketball player for Khimki in the Russian PBL basketball league. He is a point guard, weighs 195 pounds (88 kg), and is 6 feet 4.5 inches tall (194 cm). He was drafted as the 30th pick by the Philadelphia 76ers in the 2007 NBA Draft, and his NBA rights are currently held by the Dallas Mavericks.
His first club was Malmi Super-Koris ("Malmi super-basketball"), from where he joined one of Finland's top clubs, Espoo Honka. This happened for the 2004-05 season. Under the guidance of coach Mihailo Pavicevic he quickly developed into a key component of Honka's 2006-07 Finnish Championship-winning side. During the 2006-07 campaign Koponen averaged 12.4 points, 2.4 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game. The number of assists may sound small, but in Finland assists are harder to come by than in the NBA because of the difference in FIBA rules, and the league leader had an average of only 5 assists.
Koponen began his mandatory military service in the Lahti Military Academy in October 2007, participating in a special military service built for professional athletes such as Finnish tennis player Jarkko Nieminen. The Finnish League 2007-08 season began slowly, with Koponen trying to adapt to the military recruit training. Koponen struggled a lot in the opening month of the season, but found his rhythm in November, recording 21.4 points, 4.1 assists, 3.9 rebounds and 2.1 steals a game while draining 55.6% of his 2-point attempts, 45.8% of his 3-point attempts and 81.0% of his free throws. In the first game of December, Koponen played through a concussion and led the Honka Playboys to an overtime victory over Team Componenta, scoring 32 points, grabbing six rebounds and dishing out five assists. After the game, the concussion forced Koponen to be sidelined for a week.
On June 28, 2007, Koponen was taken 30th overall in the 2007 NBA Draft by the Philadelphia 76ers. He was the final first-round pick in the draft. Philadelphia then traded Koponen to the Portland Trail Blazers in exchange for their number 42 pick, Vanderbilt University swingman Derrick Byars, and cash considerations.
On July 14, 2008, Koponen had by far his most exciting performance. In a Las Vegas Summer League game against the Washington Wizards, Koponen scored 19 points, shooting 4-for-6 on three-point attempts. .
On June 23, 2011, Koponen was traded to the Dallas Mavericks for the Mavericks' second round pick in the 2011 draft (57).
He has never played in the NBA.
Back to Europe
Finnish national team
The summer of 2006 was Koponen's coming-out party. First, he played very well in the FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship B-level competition, leading the Finnish team to third place by losing just one game. After that he was promoted to the senior men's Finnish national team. He showed no fear as he played like a veteran and got to play quite a lot. His best game was against the small country Luxembourg national basketball team; he scored 19 points and handed out 7 assists.
Koponen was a main contributor in the Finnish men's national team in the summer of 2007. Finland earned a spot in European Division A after crushing the Romanian national basketball team in a deciding game by a score of 111-61. Koponen averaged 10.6 points, 2.7 assists, 1.7 rebounds and 1.3 steals in 21.3 minutes a game with the national team. Just days before the national team campaign tipped off, Koponen announced he would return to the Honka Playboys for one more season.
Koponen is known for his agility and passing skills. He is at his best in transition, being equally adept at distributing the basketball and attacking the basket.
- Career statistics and player information from NBA.com
- Petteri Koponen's Profile - Draft Express Website
- Koponen's stats from Finland
- 2007 Summer League interview