Dusan Sakota (209-SF-86) former Panathinaikos player spoke to Eurobasket.com:
With scale 1-5 rate the situation in Oostende and tell us few things about.
Payments: 5 Everything in Oostende concerning the payments was 100% professional and on time.
Facilities: 4 Everything in and around the gym was great, except for one detail that I didn't like personally, which is that the weight room was ten minutes by car from the gym, so that makes it a little harder to work out during the season as you'd like.
Fans: 4 Although the gym is rarely full, the fans of Oostende are very supportive of their players and coaches, and always bring a positive energy and atmosphere to the game!
League: 3 Even though many people underestimate the level of basketball played in Belgium, I give it a 3 because of three reasons. Very poor TV and media coverage, very low level of refereeing, and most importantly, very few teams participating in the league (only 9)
City: 5 A great, cozy city by the sea, that makes every basketball player feel comfortable in Belgium, making it that much easier to have your mind only on basketball
Are you happy in Russia now, what plans you have for the new season? Do you want to return to Greece?
I was very glad that I signed for Enisey, Russia for the remainder of the season in January, since it was a great experience to play and live in Siberia for 4 months, and also I believe it was a tremendous help for me to get back on my old level before the injury physically and mentally, by playing in one of the toughest leagues in Europe against teams such as CSKA and Khimki. Of course, I would love to one day return and play in Greece since I have spent 18 years of my life there, but for now my biggest basketball wish and goal is to try and return to the Italian League.
What advice you give to those who have a serious injury to overcome, what you did in your case?
The advice I would give to players overcoming hard injuries is mainly two: DON'T GIVE UP and HAVE A LOT OF PATIENCE! I know for a fact that the hardest possible thing a basketball player has to do in his career is to force himself to practice and rehabilitate as fast as possible, especially when no one is around. Its always easier when there is a coach or a trainer on top of your head telling you what and how to do it, but when you are alone in that gym, thats when you really have to show your love and devotion to the game of basketball, as well as your personal zeal and will to overcome all obstacles in front of you and get back to doing what you love most.. PLAYING!
Who was the best teammate ever had in your career so far.
In my opinion the best teammate player-wise that I ever had would be Diamantidis.
Do you follow the Greek finals? Whats your prediction, Panathinaikos or Olympiakos?
Of course, I am closely following the finals of the Greek League this year. OSFP is bringing a tremendous combination of energy and confidence on the court, especially after winning the Euroleague in a heroic fashion, which makes it very difficult to beat them in any aspect of the game. they dominate on the offensive rebounds, they get many steals and fly to the transition game, and their percentages are sky high due to their incredible confidence, combined with a great desire and wish to finally become champions after 15 years! However, you can never underestimate the heart of the champion, and also since I have spent 5 years of my life there, I know for a fact that PAO is not going to give up without a great fight, using maybe the only advantage that they have over their opponents in this moment...their vast experience in playing games with no tomorrow and winning! So, basically I believe that the best thing to do is not make any predictions but sit back and enjoy the show!!
Herbalife Gran Canaria (Liga Endesa) agreed terms with 32-year old American international center Ryan Hollins (213-102kg-84, college: UCLA). He played last season at Memphis Grizzlies in the NBA, but released. In 31 games he had 3.7ppg and 2.8rpg. Hollins also played that season for the Wizards in NBA. But in 5 games he recorded just 1.6ppg and 2.2rpg. In 2006 he was drafted by Charlotte Bobcats (NBA) in second round (50th overall). The former Univ.of Calif.at Los Angeles staris in his el... [read more]
Herbalife Gran Canaria (Liga Endesa) agreed terms with 32-year old American international center Ryan Hollins (213-102kg-84, college: UCLA). He played last season at Memphis Grizzlies in the NBA, but released. In 31 games he had 3.7ppg and 2.8rpg. Hollins also played that season for the Wizards in NBA. But in 5 games he recorded just 1.6ppg and 2.2rpg. In 2006 he was drafted by Charlotte Bobcats (NBA) in second round (50th overall). The former Univ.of Calif.at Los Angeles staris in his eleventh (!!!) season in pro basketball. He also represented USA at the Panamerican Games in Toronto (Canada) last year. Hollins' team won Bronze and his stats at that event were 5 games: 3.4ppg, 2.2rpg. Hollins has played previously professionally in NBA (Cleveland Cavaliers, Dallas Mavericks, Boston Celtics, LA Clippers and Sacramento Kings) and D-League (Ft.Worth F.). On Hollins:
(by Aran Smith for NBADraft.net in 2006)
Extremely explosive, loves to dunk ... Has a huge wingspan ... Runs the floor well ... His length and athleticism gives him an advantage inside ... An excellent shot blocker especially weak side ... Cleans the glass well with his length and leaping ability ...
Does not enjoy contact and struggles against stronger post players ... Struggles to hold position in the paint ...
BC Nizhny Novgorod (VTB) landed 26-year old Croatian international power forward Tomislav Zubcic (208-90). He already started the season at Avtodor in the VTB. In 6 games he averaged 11.8ppg, 5.2rpg, 2.0apg and 1.0spg this season. Zubcic also played 7 games in Basketball Champions League where he had 13.4ppg, 5.0rpg and 2.1apg. The last season he played at another team OKC Blue in U.S. semi-pro league D-League. In 37 games he recorded 7.8ppg, 4.8rpg and 1.4apg. In 2012 Zubcic was drafted... [read more]
BC Nizhny Novgorod (VTB) landed 26-year old Croatian international power forward Tomislav Zubcic (208-90). He already started the season at Avtodor in the VTB. In 6 games he averaged 11.8ppg, 5.2rpg, 2.0apg and 1.0spg this season. Zubcic also played 7 games in Basketball Champions League where he had 13.4ppg, 5.0rpg and 2.1apg. The last season he played at another team OKC Blue in U.S. semi-pro league D-League. In 37 games he recorded 7.8ppg, 4.8rpg and 1.4apg. In 2012 Zubcic was drafted by Drafted by Toronto Raptors (NBA) in second round (56th overall). Among other achievements he won Croatian A1 League championship title in 2009, 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2015. Zubcic was selected to Croatian League All-Star Game back in 2010. He has been also a member of Croatian international program for some years. Zubcic has regularly played for Croatian senior team since 2009 and previously for U19 National Team in 2009. He represented Croatia at the European Championships U20 in Croatia six years ago. Zubcic's team got to the Semifinals and his stats at that event were 9 games: 6.3ppg, 4.0rpg, FGP: 50.0%, 3PT: 21.4%, FT: 73.3%. Zubcic has played previously professionally in Lithuania (Lietuvos rytas) and Croatia (Cibona, KK Zadar, Cedevita and Rudes). Let's have closer look into His outlook:
A very talented frontcourt player who seems not ready to bang inside, due to skinny frame and poor fighting mentality. Has great mid-range shooting and passing skills, his future could be at the 4 position.
Strebkov's 31-point game gives him Player of the Week award - 4 days ago
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25-year old point guard Ivan Strebkov (192-PG-91) put on an extraordinary performance in the last round for N.Novgorod and receives a Eurobasket.com Player of the Week award for round 8. He had the game-high 31 points adding two rebounds and four assists for N.Novgorod in his team's victory, helping them to edge out Lietkabelis (#4, 3-4) 91-89. N.Novgorod is placed at 3rd position in their group in EuroCup group A. N.Novgorod is a typical solid league team placed somewhere in the middle o... [read more]
25-year old point guard Ivan Strebkov (192-PG-91) put on an extraordinary performance in the last round for N.Novgorod and receives a Eurobasket.com Player of the Week award for round 8. He had the game-high 31 points adding two rebounds and four assists for N.Novgorod in his team's victory, helping them to edge out Lietkabelis (#4, 3-4) 91-89. N.Novgorod is placed at 3rd position in their group in EuroCup group A. N.Novgorod is a typical solid league team placed somewhere in the middle or a little bit lower in the standings. They need more victories to improve their 3-3 record. In the team's last game Strebkov had a remarkable 62.5% from 2-point range and got four three-pointers out of 6 attempts. It's his second year at N.Novgorod and it's hard to imagine this team without him. Strebkov has impressive league stats. He is in league's top in points (5th best: 18.2ppg), assists (7th best: 5.2apg) and averages solid 60.0% FGP and 40.5% from behind 3-point line.
Second best performed player last round was Chris Babb (196-G-90) of Ratiopharm. He is American guard in his 2nd season at Ratiopharm. In the last game Babb recorded impressive 30 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists. It was enough for Ratiopharm to edge slightly lower-ranked Lokomotiv (#4, 2-4) by 4 points 105-101. It was definitely game of the week between two contenders to the top position in group D. Ratiopharm consolidated its place in top 3 of the standings. His team's 4-3 record is not bad at all. Babb is well-known at Ratiopharm and he already established his position as one of the team's leaders.
Third place about best performers goes to another N.Novgorod's star - guard DeAndre Kane (193-G-89, agency: BeoBasket). Kane scored 16 points and grabbed nine rebounds. He was another key player of N.Novgorod, helping his team with a 91-89 win against #4 ranked Lietkabelis. N.Novgorod needs these victories very badly if they think about getting closer to top teams in group A. Their record at this point is 3 victories and 3 lost games. Kane has a great season in EuroCup. After only 6 games, he made it on the list of the league's leaders in rebounds with 8.8rpg (3rd best).
Other top performing players last week: 4. Mardy Collins (198-G-84) of Lokomotiv - 26 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assists 5. Simas Galdikas (204-F/C-87) of Lietkabelis - 20 points and 8 rebounds 6. Stefan Markovic (196-G-88) of Zenit - 14 points, 2 rebounds and 11 assists 7. Devin Oliver (204-SF-92) of Un.Olimpija - 18 points, 11 rebounds and 3 assists 8. Nobel Boungou-Colo (202-F-88) of Khimky - 18 points and 5 rebounds 9. Ben Madgen (193-G/F-85) of Lietkabelis - 20 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists 10. Arturas Gudaitis (211-C/F-93) of Lietuvos rytas - 11 points and 16 rebounds
The Player of the week is chosen based on efficiency calculation, but also including game result, importance of the game, if played recorded double-double/triple-double, etc. The efficiency formula is a combination of various formulas used by different basketball organizations/leagues. We got involved many basketball scouts and journalists to assure it's accuracy. The formula: 1.5*PTS + 3* (REB+AST+ST+BL-TO) - 2*BSAG - 4*PF + 3*PFRV + 4* (2FGPM+3FGPM) + 1.5*FTM - 3* (2FGPA-2FGPM) - 3* (3FGPA-3FGPM) - (FTA-FTM)
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