Scottie Wilbekin

Scottie Jordan Wilbekin is an American-born, naturalized Turkish professional basketball player for Maccabi Tel Aviv of the Israeli Premier League and the EuroLeague. He played college basketball for the Florida Gators, where he was named the Southeastern Conference Player of the Year in 2014. Wilbekin played professional basketball in Australia, Greece, Turkey and Israel. He led Darüşşafaka to win the 2018 EuroCup title, while earning the EuroCup Finals and the Regular Season MVP awards.

College career

After skipping his senior year at The Rock, Wilbekin accepted an athletic scholarship to attend the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida, where he played for coach Billy Donovan's Gators teams from 2010 to 2014. During his 2013–14 senior season, he led the Florida Gators to the Southeastern Conference regular season championship and the SEC Tournament title, and he was named the SEC Player of the Year by the conference's coaches and the Associated Press. In addition, The Sporting News named him a third-team All-American. With Wilbekin as the team's senior leader, the Gators advanced to the 2014 NCAA Final Four.

Professional career

Cairns Taipans (2014–2015)

After going undrafted in the 2014 NBA draft, Wilbekin joined the Memphis Grizzlies for the Orlando Summer League and the Philadelphia 76ers for the Las Vegas Summer League. On August 22, 2014, he signed with the Cairns Taipans for the 2014–15 NBL season. On October 14, 2014, he was named Player of the Week for Round 1 after scoring 23 points against Adelaide on October 10 and 27 points against Melbourne on October 12. On November 6, 2014, he was named Player of the Month for October after guiding the Taipans to a 6–0 unbeaten start to the season.
On February 16, 2015, at the Taipans' annual awards night, Wilbekin was named the club Defensive Player of the Year and Most Valuable Player. He and the Taipans went on to defeat the New Zealand Breakers in the final game of the regular season on February 22 to finish on top of the ladder for the first time in club history with a win/loss record of 21–7. He was subsequently named Player of the Week for Round 20 after scoring 18 of his 25 points in the second half of the Taipans' 81–77 win over the Breakers which helped them secure the club's first ever minor premiership. After sweeping the Perth Wildcats in the semi-finals, the Taipans faced the Breakers in the Grand Final series, going on to lose the series 2–0 following a game-winning shot by Ekene Ibekwe in Game 2. Wilbekin appeared in all 32 games for the Taipans and averaged 15.2 points, 3.7 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 1.1 steals per game.

AEK (2015)

On March 12, 2015, Wilbekin signed with the Greek Basket League club AEK, for the rest of the 2014–15 Greek Basket League season. In nine games with AEK, he averaged 8.0 points, 2.3 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game.

Philadelphia 76ers (2015)

On June 30, 2015, Wilbekin joined the Orlando Magic white team for the Orlando Summer League. On July 3, 2015, he re-signed with the Taipans for the 2015–16 NBL season. Later that month however, after a stint with the Philadelphia 76ers at the Las Vegas Summer League, Wilbekin opted out of his deal with the Taipans in order to sign in the NBA. On July 24, 2015, he signed a four-year deal with the 76ers. However, he was later waived by the team on October 26 after appearing in five preseason games.

Darüşşafaka (2015–2018)

On October 31, 2015, he signed with Darüşşafaka Doğuş of Turkey for the 2015–16 season, with the option to extend for one season.
On March 28, 2017, Wilbekin signed a two-year contract extension with Darüşşafaka. In his second season with Daçka, Wilbekin helped the team to reach the 2017 EuroLeague Playoffs as the eighth seed, but they eventually were eliminated by Real Madrid in the Quarterfinals.
On January 1, 2018, Wilbekin was named EuroCup Regular Season MVP. On March 23, 2018, Wilbekin recorded a career-high 41 points by shooting 10-for-15 from three-point range – which is a EuroCup all-time records in both categories for a non-overtime game, and led Darüşşafaka to the 2018 EuroCup Finals after an 87–83 win over Bayern Munich. On April 6, 2018, Wilbekin was named Eurocup MVP and earned a spot in the All-EuroCup First Team. On April 13, 2018, Wilbekin led Darüşşafaka to win the 2018 EuroCup Championship after beating Lokomotiv Kuban in the Finals, where he averaged 26 points per game. He was subsequently named the EuroCup Finals MVP.

Maccabi Tel Aviv (2018–present)

On July 10, 2018, Wilbekin signed a two-year deal with Israeli team Maccabi Tel Aviv of the EuroLeague. On October 18, 2018, Wilbekin scored a EuroLeague career-high 28 points, shooting 10-of-16 from the field, along with five assists and four rebounds in a 78–68 win over Budućnost. Two days later, Wilbekin was named EuroLeague Round 3 co-MVP, alongside Rodrigue Beaubois. On January 20, 2019, Wilbekin recorded a season-high 36 points, shooting 7-of-15 from 3-point range, along with four assists and three steals in a 94–104 overtime loss to Hapoel Tel Aviv. In the fourth quarter of that game, Wilbekin scored an Israeli League-record 25 points for a single quarter. On February 7, 2019, Wilbekin recorded 17 points, including a game-winner shot with 4.4 seconds left in a 65–64 win over Olympiacos.
On October 27, 2019, Wilbekin recorded 26 points, while shooting 6-of-7 from three-point range, including 13 points in 70 seconds during the third quarter, as he led Maccabi to an 89–73 win over Hapoel Jerusalem. Two days later, He was named Israeli League Round 4 MVP. On December 23, 2019, Wilbekin recorded a season-high 35 points, along with nine assists and five rebounds in a 112–110 double overtime win over Hapoel Gilboa Galil.
On January 29, 2020, Wilbekin signed a three-year contract extension with Maccabi.

Turkey national team

On June 18, 2018, Wilbekin got a Turkish passport. He was subsequently named a member of the senior Turkish national basketball team, for the 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup qualification games. He made his debut with Turkey on June 28, 2018, scoring 13 points in a win over Ukraine.

Personal life

Wilbekin's younger brother, Mitchell, played college basketball for Wake Forest University from 2014–2018; appearing in 119 games, starting 89, over his four-year career. Scottie's other younger brother, Andrew, is currently attending Husson University in Maine.

Career statistics

Denotes seasons in which Wilbekin won the EuroCup
Led the league