Aaron Mitchell (187-G, college: Longwood), US point guard who has recently joined the newly promoted Centar from Bijelo Polje answered on eurobasket.com's questions about his goals and first overseas experience in Bijelo Polje. Take a look...
Hello Aaron, tell us more about your first steps in the basketball world? Have you always dreams to be a professional basketball player?
Yes that has been one of my lifetime goals to become a professional player since a child.
You are from Virginia, a state in the US not well known for its basketball, but mostly known for its football. Do you feel that basketball players from Virginia are somehow overlooked?
In some way you can say we are but when you really look at we have a lot of players playing professional basketball. I have many friends that I played with or grew up playing professional like Jay Threatt (180-G-89, college: Delaware St.), Brandon Rozzell (187-G-89, college: VCU), Tyrese Rice (185-PG-87, agency: Priority Sports, college: Boston Coll.) to just name a few. But I think we are starting to get recognize more now.
You played college basketball at Longwood (NCAA1). Was there any specific reason to choose Longwood?
Yes there was I had went to FL for JUCO basketball my 1st two years. So my family really couldnt see me play. So being back home was a plus. Also Longwood really showed they wanted me on my visit.
After a solid college career ( Senior season stats: 13.4ppg, 5.8rpg, 3.8apg and 1.0spg ) you appeared in a Pro Camp in Las Vegas but you did not get a deal to go abroad last season. How did you feel at that moment? You felt you needed to work more on your game and keep imporoving or you were just disappointed?
I was really disappointed but that motivated me to really work hard and keep working towards getting overseas! Everybody has there own path of getting overseas mine just took a little longer.
Last season you played for Richmond Elite (ABA), a team which had many NCAA 1 and 2 players on its roster and was coached by George Lancaster who is a coaching legend in Virginia. Did this experience help you get mentally and physically stronger and adjust to the requirements of pro basketball?
ABA was a big help like it got me adjusted to the speed and physical play of pro ball. Learning from Coach Lancaster was great like he really teaches you the fundamentals demands respect from his players. He we had a great season we finished #11 in the nation.
In September you joined Centar Bijelo Polje, the newcomer in Division I (Montenegro). Before you left the States, did you have any idea about the level of basketball in this small Mediteranian country or you just wanted to play and did not care much about other things?
No I didn't have any clue about the talent level here. I just wanted to get my foot in the door so I could have chance at a pro career overseas!
In Centar you will have an important role as starting point guard. Could you tell now the fans what they can expect from you this year?
Expect for me to come here and play my hardest and do everything possible to help the team win games. It's all about getting wins for the team and coach!
You will not be the only American in the team as there is already Rickey Young (204-F/C-90, college: W.Virginia Tech), who played last year in Montenegro and got important experience. Is Rickey there for you to help you when the help is needed?
Yes, Rickey has made the transition a lot smother for me here. He some I can ask questions about certain things on the court that will help. Not only has he been a big help on the court but off the court too. I would probably still be lost out here now haha.
What are your first impressions about the town and the club? How far can go this team?
The town is very friendly and everybody knows each other like one big family here. The people have been nothing but friendly to me. We are young group of guys so we can go as far as our energy on defense takes us. It's start with the defense. We have to beat teams with our quickness and defense.
Thank you Aaron for this interview. Eurobasket.com will keep following your games and the games of your team. Good luck in the new season!
Koljevic number one in Montenegro for round 2 - 10 hours ago
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Guard Marko Koljevic (191-G-90) put on an amazing game in the last round for S.Centar, receiving a Eurobasket.com Player of the Week award for round 2. The 26-year old player was the main contributor (50 points, four rebounds) to his team's victory, helping them to beat Teodo Tivat (1-1) 86-78. S.Centar is placed at 5th position in Montenegrin Erste Liga. S.Centar is a typical solid league team placed somewhere in the middle or a little bit lower in the standings. They need more victories... [read more]
Guard Marko Koljevic (191-G-90) put on an amazing game in the last round for S.Centar, receiving a Eurobasket.com Player of the Week award for round 2. The 26-year old player was the main contributor (50 points, four rebounds) to his team's victory, helping them to beat Teodo Tivat (1-1) 86-78. S.Centar is placed at 5th position in Montenegrin Erste Liga. S.Centar 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 1-1 record. In the team's last game Koljevic had a remarkable 77.8% from 2-point range and got nine three-pointers out of 11 attempts. It was one of impressive evenings for him as usually he does not deliver so high stats.
The second best player in last round's games was 27-year old Boris Jeknic (203-C-89) of Ulcinj. Jeknic had a very good evening with a double-double of 19 points and 16 rebounds. Of course Ulcinj cruised to a 68-59 relatively comfortable win over Primorje 1945 (0-2). The season is still at the very beginning and this victory may help a lot. Let's wait for the next round. Jeknic is a newcomer at Ulcinj and despite he is not a team leader yet, every game he becomes more reliable player. Hopefully performances like the last one will happen more often.
Third on the list of top players last round was guard Milorad Sutulovic (196-G-90) of Danilovgrad (#6). Sutulovic scored 23 points and grabbed seven rebounds. Despite Sutulovic's great performance Danilovgrad lost 66-73 to Jedinstvo (1-1). But his team cannot count on just a single player as he also needs help of the other teammates. The last thing Danilovgrad needs is to lose another game like this one. They lose more and more distance to the top teams. Their record is 1 victory and 1 lost game. The season just started for Sutulovic as he played only first game. But it already looks like he can be team's leader.
Other top performing players last week: 4. Milos Lopicic (216-C-90) of Lovcen - 16 points and 17 rebounds 5. Jovan Bacovic (197-F-86) of Primorje 1945 - 16 points and 13 rebounds 6. Arso Lekovic (200-SF-90) of Jedinstvo - 11 points and 15 rebounds 7. Milan Stanojevic (183-G-86) of Teodo Tivat - 18 points and 9 assists 8. Vasilije Knezevic (202-C-96) of Lovcen - 22 points and 6 rebounds 9. Vladimir Milosevic (201-F-87) of S.Centar - 7 points, 6 rebounds and 5 assists 10. Nikola Djokovic (190-SG-89) of Sutjeska - 21 points and 3 assists
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)
Adriatic League: Buducnost prevail against Mornar - 1 day ago
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Buducnost - Mornar 85:68 Buducnost kept on winning in the Adriatic League season. The Montenegrin powerhouse posted the sixth straight win beating their state rivals Mornar. Suad Sehovic (197-G/F-87) nailed 24 points to lead the winners. Buducnost eked out a 23:20 lead after ten minutes. The Montenegrin side stretched the gap at 8-point mark at the interval 50:42. Buducnost held their opponents to just 9 points in the third quarter to gain a comfortable 17-point lead at the final break.... [read more]
Buducnost - Mornar 85:68
Buducnost kept on winning in the Adriatic League season. The Montenegrin powerhouse posted the sixth straight win beating their state rivals Mornar. Suad Sehovic (197-G/F-87) nailed 24 points to lead the winners. Buducnost eked out a 23:20 lead after ten minutes. The Montenegrin side stretched the gap at 8-point mark at the interval 50:42. Buducnost held their opponents to just 9 points in the third quarter to gain a comfortable 17-point lead at the final break. Buducnost maintained the lead throughout the fourth quarter and rallied to the win. Petar Popovic (194-PG-96, agency: BeoBasket) netted 18 points, while J.R. Reynolds (188-G-84, college: Virginia, agency: Inception Sports) added 10 points for the hosts. Lamont Jones (183-PG-90, college: Iona, agency: Stanislav Ryzhov) responded with 13 points for Mornar. Cole Dickerson (201-F-91, college: USF) and Marko Mijovic (187-PG-87) had 10 points each in the loss.
Once again home teams did not have any luck. Actually, in all three games that were played so far away teams won. Primorje and Ulcinj play tomorrow and if Ulcinj gets a win they will complete the round full of surprises. But let's start with yesterday's game between two old rivals- Lovcen and Sutjeska. Sutjeska won in Cetinje (80-73) but after an overtime. Milos Lopicic (216-C-90) sent the game to overtime with a triple made just before the shot clock called the end of game. However, in t... [read more]
Once again home teams did not have any luck. Actually, in all three games that were played so far away teams won. Primorje and Ulcinj play tomorrow and if Ulcinj gets a win they will complete the round full of surprises. But let's start with yesterday's game between two old rivals- Lovcen and Sutjeska. Sutjeska won in Cetinje (80-73) but after an overtime. Milos Lopicic (216-C-90) sent the game to overtime with a triple made just before the shot clock called the end of game. However, in the overtime Nikola Djokovic (190-SG-89) (21 points) and other Sutjeska's players showed more patience and won the game. On the other side Milos Lopicic had 16 points and 17 rebounds while the other big man Vasilije Knezevic (202-C-96) had 22 points.
After the defeat against Danilovgrad at home probably nobody expected that Studentski centar would give serious trouble to the Balkan league member Teodo. But they did more than that and won the game in Tivat (86-78) thanks to a great performance by Marko Koljevic (191-G-90). Koljevic, who used to play for Teodo before, scored 50 points while shooting 9/11 from the 3 point line! This is probably one of the best, if not the best, performances in the history of Montenegrin championship. On the other side Serbian guard Milan Stanojevic (183-G-86, college: E.Washington, agency: Mansfield and Associates) led 5 scorers in double digits for Teodo but it was not enough to match with great performance by Koljevic.
Danilovgrad hosted Jedinstvo but was unable to get a win (66-73). Both teams had a chance to win tonight and the game was close until the last moments but Jedinstvo deserved to get the first win of the season. Stefan Knezevic (204-C-89) (18 points) and Milos Jelovac (188-G-97) (17 points) led the guests. In the home team Milorad Sutulovic (196-G-90) had another good game with 23 points.
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