• The Japan Times


Point guard Kazuyuki Nakagawa played 71 turnover-free minutes last weekend in the Takamatsu Five Arrows’ series sweep over the Western Conference-leading Ryukyu Golden Kings.

Nakagawa had 15- and 22-point outings in those games, and he’s the Circle K Sunkus Player of the Week, the bj-league announced on Tuesday. He also had 13 rebounds, seven assists and five steals over the weekend.

Since Nakagawa, who has previously played for the Five Arrows in their inaugural season and for the Rizing Fukuoka in 2008, made a mid-season return to the bj-league, Takamatsu (23-9) has won eight straight games. The Yamaguchi Prefecture native is averaging 13.4 points per game.

In other bj-league news Tuesday, veteran forward Ryan Blackwell, a Syracuse University product who was a key player for the Sendai 89es over the past two seasons, has returned to the bj-league. He has agreed to a contract to play for the Osaka Evessa, the three-time defending league champion announced.

The 200-cm forward, who played at Syracuse from 1996-2000, has the ability to score in double digits in points every game, and he was one of the league’s top passing forwards in past seasons. The 32-year-old will give Evessa coach Kensaku Tennichi more versatility in the halfcourt offense and another long-armed, active defender at the other end of the floor.

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