Edis Dervisevic (203-F, agency: BBEH Cokrlija) is a US born big man from New York but his parents were born and raised in a small Montenegrin town called Gusinje (Northern Montenegro). We took the opportunity to interview him before the New Year holiday and ask him about his plans for the future. Take a look and enjoy the holidays!
Hello Edis, how did you become a basketball player? There was no other sports in your life ?
Growing up in New York City, Basketball is a culture that your born into its a way of life to some people you cant avoid it. Growing up as a child I was always following my older brother around and he use to play day in and day out with his friends non-stop. So as a kid I learned to play from my brother he was the one to actually put the ball in my hands. Its weird how I love basketball because my father and all of my uncles love European football basketball was not big in my family. I never liked any other sport ive tried other sports but never the same love as I had for basketball.
New York City is famous for its playgrounds and basketball is more than just a sport, its a part of a life style. How did a son of Montenerin emigrants built up a name for himself in a basketball city?
New York City is definitely the Mecca of basketball and so is street basketball, during the summer time when the weather is real nice there are basketball tournaments going on in every park. New York city basketball players live for the summertime so they can enjoy playing in streetbasketball tournaments because theres music and an announcer who gets the crowd into the game. Well thats how I actually built my name was playing in playgrounds playing all over New York city in all the bad parts all the time. I started my collegiate career pretty late when I was 19 so streetball and playgrounds was what I was known for. My parents who immigrated into this country worked very hard in America to provide all the best for me so werent to much interested in my sports but I built a name for myself pretty quickly and is resprected all over New York City.
You graduated from Our Saviour Lutheran High School in the New York. Could you remember some of the well known names that you played with and against in highschool?
I didnt graduaute from Our Savior Lutheran I was only there for one year, but yes ofcorse I remember that was an experience to never forget. The whole starting 5 from that team went on to play college basketball D1 Justin Burrell (206-F-88, college: St.John's) who played for St. Johns and is now playing in China. Josh Watkins (182-G-89, agency: Interperformances) who played for Utah university. Nick Murphy (193-G/F-88, college: Jacksonville St.) who played for Jacksonville state university and is now in the D-league. Dre Calloway (183-PG) who is currently playing for St.Francis university. That one year I was there we played against the best of the best played against top players like Kevin Love (208-PF-88, college: UCLA), Michael Beasley (208-F-89, college: Kansas St.), Ty Lawson (180-PG-87, college: N.Carolina), the Lopez twins, the Morris twins, Matt Bouldin (196-G-88, agency: Priority Sports, college: Gonzaga), those are just a few names but that was experience was to never forget.
After highschool you moved to Texas, to the West Coast and joined Western Texas College in Snyder, Texas. How important was that decision for you and why did you move to Texas?
Well what a lot of people dont know is why I didnt go straight to a divison 1 was because I dropped out of high school and went on to get my GED which is equilavent to a high school diploma and I couldnt go to a divison one with that. So I had to go to junior college first and get my associates degree in order to play DIVISON one basketball. Making that decision was the best and most important decision of my life it changed my life and I will never forget that. That move from new York city to a small city in Texas was really hard for me. It really made me a man and humble it changed the way I lived and acted I became more mature as a man. I was one of the best junior college player when I attended Western Texas I was ranked very high and was getting recruited by big 12 and Atlantic 10 schools and I hurt my foot in my second year and all the schools that were recruiting me got scared and backed off and Long beach took a look at me when I got healthy and signed me right away.
In 2010-2011 you got a call from Division 1 and Long Beach State University where you spent your junior and senior season. You were LBSU's first big man off the bench. Could you tell us more about the last two years at LBSU?
My experience at Long Beach State was amazing yes I was the 6th man both years for them and it was the best thing that ever happened to me. Being there for two years we won 2 conference championships and went on to play in the big NCAA tournament as more people know it as march madness, that was my dream as a little boy to play in that tournament and it was a dream come true. My senior what a lot of people dont know I was named captain of the team along with Casper Ware (177-PG-90, college: Long Beach St.), yes people can say I wasnt in the starting five but I played a bigger role on that team then people can imagine. In my two years there we went 29-3 for two years thats a really great record for college in conference. I did everything that doesnt show up in the box score that everyone even the coach respected me for I was assigned a role that I committed myself as a player todo, sometime in life you have to sacrifice something in order for something special to happen.
You graduated this year, averaging 4.2 ppg and 3.1 rpg in 2011-2012 season. What did you do after your college career was over?
Yes my stats are not great at all people dont know how hard it is to score or get stats when assigned a role to play a lot of people struggle with this. After basketball was over I couldnt attend any camps or workout with any teams because the whole summer I was finishing up classes with summer school so I can have my degree which was the main goal. Im the first one in my family to graduate college so that made my parents extremely happy.
What are your plans for the future? Would you like to pursue a pro career in basketball?
Yes I would love to pursue a professional career in Europe its just hard when you dont have to stats to back you up or a bigtime agent. Being a pro was always my dream.
This year you and your father visited Montenegro, the country where your parents were born. How did you like Montenegro and would you like to return here as a player and maybe start building up your pro career in Erste Basketball League?
Yes my father and I did visit not too long ago but the trip was not for basketball we went to bury my grandmother. I love Montenegro the people are nice the weather is beautifull the women are beautifull whats there not to like? I would love to play for my country and definitely start my career there.
Are there any other children of Montenegrin emigrants that made a name for themselves on the basketball court in New York and United States?
Not that I know, I know a lot play basketball but nothing serious yet.
Thank you Edis for this interview. I hope to see you soon here in Montenegro!
Thanks so much for having me hopefully a team will sign me and it will happen. Thanks again
Marko Todorovic's double-double lands him Player of the Week award among Montenegrins playing currently abroad: - 2 hours ago
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Traditionally, every week we bring you a list of the top performances of Montenegrins who are currently playing abroad. This week's number one is an international forward Marko Todorovic (209-92). He was the major contributor in Khimky's victory against the closely-ranked Astana in the VTB United League in Sunday night's game.
Traditionally, every week we bring you a list of the top performances of Montenegrins who are currently playing abroad.
#1. This week's number one is an international forward Marko Todorovic (209-92, currently plays in VTB United League). He was the major contributor in Khimky's victory against the closely-ranked Astana (6-6) 83-66 in the VTB United League in Sunday night's game.
Todorovic had a double-double by scoring 15 points and getting 18 rebounds. He also added 3 assists in 29 minutes on the court.
BC Khimky Moscow Region (9-3) is placed fifth in the VTB United League.
This year Todorovic averages: 8.5ppg, 7.7rpg, 1.5apg, 1.1spg, 2FGP: 64.8%(35-54) in 11 games he played so far.
He is currently a member of the Montenegrin senior national team.
#2. Second place goes to an international power forward Bojan Dubljevic (205-91, agency: BeoBasket, currently plays in Spain). Dubljevic led Valencia Basket to a victory over the closely-ranked Movil Estudiantes (9-5) 93-85 in the Spanish Liga Endesa last Sunday.
He was MVP of the game. Dubljevic scored 17 points and grabbed 6 rebounds.
Valencia Basket (12-4) is placed second in the Liga Endesa.
It was his team's seventh consecutive victory in a row.
It's Dubljevic's fourth season with the team.
He has relatively good stats this year: 12.6ppg, 5.2rpg, 1.5apg, 2FGP: 53.9%, 3FGP: 27.8% and FT: 88.9%.
Dubljevic is in the roster of the Montenegrin senior national team.
#3. The Montenegrin player who performed third best last week abroad was an international center Nikola Vucevic (213-90, college: USC, currently plays in NBA). He was the main contributor in an Orlando Magic's victory against the Portland Trail Blazers (18-25) 115-109 in the NBA on Friday night.
Vucevic was the best player in that game. He had a double-double by scoring 30 points and getting 10 rebounds. Vucevic also added 4 assists and 2 blocks in 32 minutes.
The Orlando Magic has 17-27 record this season.
Vucevic is one of the most experienced players in a team as it's his fifth year in Magic's roster.
He has individually a very good season with high stats. Vucevic averages: 13.7ppg, 10.0rpg, 2.9apg, 2FGP: 48.2%, 3FGP: 28.2% and FT: 62.5% in 41 games.
He is also a member of the Montenegrin senior national team.
#4. Point guard Tyrese Rice (185-87, college: Boston Coll., currently plays in Euroleague) could not help FC Barcelona (8-10) in their last game on Thursday. Despite Rice's very good performance the ninth-placed FC Barcelona (8-10) was edged 69-67 at home by the higher-ranked Olympiacos (#3) in the group A of Euroleague.
He was the second best scorer with 15 points. Rice also added 5 assists.
This season Rice has relatively solid stats: 14.8ppg, 2.0rpg, 5.3apg and 1.3spg.
He is a naturalized American.
Rice used to play for the Montenegrin national team
back in 2014. Strangely he has never played in Montenegro.
#5. Former international point guard Taylor Rochestie (185-85, college: Washington St., currently plays in VTB United League) contributed to an easy victory against one of league's weakest teams Kalev/Cramo (2-10) crushing them 95-64 in the VTB United League last Sunday.
Rochestie scored 14 points and grabbed 4 rebounds in a mere 15 minutes.
Lokomotiv Kuban (10-2) is placed second in the VTB United League.
It was his team's tenth consecutive victory in a row.
Rochestie has reliable stats this year: 10.8ppg, 2.5rpg, 4.8apg and 1.5spg in six games.
He is a naturalized American.
Rochestie used to play for the Montenegrin national team
three years ago.
Apparently he has never played in Montenegro.
#6. Power forward Milko Bjelica (207-84, also represented by BeoBasket, currently plays in ABA League) contributed to an easy victory against the 12th-ranked Krka (5-13) 79-62 in the ABA League on Sunday night.
Bjelica scored 9 points and added 3 passes.
Crvena Zvezda MTS Beograd (18-0) is placed first in the ABA League.
So far his team won all eighteen games in the Regular Season.
It's Bjelica's first season with the team.
His stats this year are: 10.3ppg, 3.9rpg and 1.5apg.
Bjelica is a former international player as he played for the Montenegrin senior team three years ago.
#7. Former international power forward Filip Barovic (207-90, agency: Octagon Europe, currently plays in FIBA Europe Cup) contributed to an easy victory against the third-ranked Redwell Gunners Oberwart (1-4) crushing them 96-69 in the FIBA Europe Cup in Wednesday night's game.
He was the top player that evening. Barovic scored 21 points, grabbed 7 rebounds, passed 3 assists and added 2 blocks in a mere 19 minutes.
Telekom Baskets Bonn (4-1) is placed first in group M.
His team will play only one more game in the FIBA Europe Cup Second Stage. And that game will be critical.
Barovic averaged so far 10.6ppg, 4.7rpg and 1.7apg in nine games.
He used to play for the Montenegrin national team
three years ago.
#8. Power forward Vladimir Dragicevic (206-86, currently plays in Poland) contributed to Stelmet's victory against the tenth-ranked Stal Ostrow Wlkp. (8-8) 76-65 in the Polish PLK last Saturday.
Dragicevic scored 15 points, grabbed 6 rebounds and dished 3 assists.
Stelmet Zielona Gora (12-3) is placed second in the PLK.
It was his team's fifth consecutive victory in a row.
Dragicevic's stats this season are: 12.4ppg, 6.3rpg and 1.4apg.
He used to play for the Montenegrin national team
back in 2014.
#9. Former international power forward Radosav Spasojevic (204-92, another player represented by BeoBasket, currently plays in ABA League) was not able to help Mega Leks (5-13) in their last game on Sunday. Despite Spasojevic's very good performance Mega Leks was defeated 89-85 on the road by the much higher-ranked Cedevita (#4).
He was the top scorer with 18 points.
Spasojevic's overall stats this season are: 8.4ppg and 3.5rpg.
He used to play for the Montenegrin national team
two years ago.
#10. Swingman Milos Savovic (200-89, currently plays in Serbia) contributed to an easy victory against the fifth-ranked Tamis (8-5) crushing them 79-59 in the Serbian KLS last Saturday.
Savovic recorded 13 points and grabbed 6 rebounds in a mere 19 minutes.
KK Vrsac Swisslion (11-2) is placed first in the KLS.
It was his team's eighth consecutive victory in a row.
Savovic has been at the team for four years.
This season his overall stats are: 9.5ppg and 2.9rpg in 11 games.
Savovic is a former U20 international player as eight years ago he still played for the Montenegrin national team.
#11. International shooting guard Nikola Pavlicevic (192-88, currently plays in Basketball Champions League) was not able to secure a victory for Szolnok (2-11) in their last game. Despite his very good performance Szolnok (#8) lost 91-96 on their home court in Szolnok to the leading Besiktas in the group E of Basketball Champions League.
Pavlicevic recorded 17 points, 9 assists and 4 steals in 33 minutes.
Pavlicevic averaged so far 14.3ppg, 2.0rpg, 4.0apg and 2.5spg in six games.
He plays currently for the Montenegrin national team.
#12. Former international point guard Ivan Koljevic (187-84, currently plays in Iran) contributed to Kashan's victory against the closely-ranked Army 85-74 in the Iranian Superleague last Thursday.
Koljevic scored 23 points, grabbed 7 rebounds and dished 9 assists (was perfect 7-for-7 from the free throw line).
This season Koljevic has very high stats. He averages: 23.0ppg, 6.3rpg, 5.0apg and 1.1spg.
Koljevic used to play for the Montenegrin national team
back in 2012.
#13. International shooting guard Vladimir Mihailovic (193-90, currently plays in Basketball Champions League) contributed to a 3-point EWE Baskets' victory against the fifth-ranked PAOK 82-79 in the Basketball Champions League on Wednesday night.
He recorded 10 points in only 13 minutes.
This year Mihailovic's total stats are: 7.8ppg, 2.8rpg and 2.0apg in four games.
He is also Montenegrin national team player.
#14. Former international power forward Nemanja Radovic (208-91, another player represented by BeoBasket, currently plays in EuroCup) couldn't help UCAM Murcia (1-2) in their last game on Tuesday. Despite Radovic's good performance UCAM Murcia was defeated 94-85 in Las Palmas by the lower-ranked Gran Canaria (#3).
He scored 11 points and grabbed 5 rebounds.
Radovic has averaged so far 7.8ppg and 3.5rpg.
He used to play for the Montenegrin national team
back in 2014.
#15. Former University international center Mihailo Sekulovic (206-91, currently plays in Bulgaria) contributed to an easy victory against the closely-ranked Cherno More 76-58 in the Bulgarian NBL last Friday.
Sekulovic scored 15 points and grabbed 8 rebounds in 31 minutes.
Sekulovic has very impressive stats this year: 17.8ppg, 9.0rpg and 1.8apg in 12 games.
He used to play for the Montenegrin university national team
two years ago.
The list of other players, who all have Montenegrin passport but never been selected to any of Montenegrin national teams:
#1.Nikola Dragovic (206-F-87, agency: BeoBasket, college: UCLA, currently plays in Basketball Champions League) led his French team ASVEL Lyon-Villeurbanne Basket to a victory over the eighth-ranked Rosa (3-10) crushing them 87-67 in the Basketball Champions League on Tuesday night.
Dragovic was the top player that evening. He recorded 16 points in 25 minutes.
ASVEL Lyon-Villeurbanne Basket (10-3) is placed first in group C.
Dragovic's team will play only one more game in the Basketball Champions League Regular Season. And that game will be critical.
Dragovic averaged so far 11.1ppg and 3.4rpg in 12 games he played so far.
He has a dual citizenship: Serbian and Montenegrin.
Despite Dragovic's Montenegrin passport, he previously played for the Serbian university national team and is probably not eligible to play for the Montenegrin team.
#2.Nikola Vukovic (202-F/C-90, currently plays in Serbia) could not help Dunav SB (8-5) in their last game on Saturday. Despite his good performance Dunav SB was defeated 80-75 on the road by the much lower-ranked Metalac (#11).
Vukovic was the second best scorer with 14 points. He also added 8 rebounds.
Vukovic's total stats this season are: 9.2ppg and 5.0rpg.
#3.Filip Popovic was the major contributor in a Radnicki 1950's victory against the seventh-ranked Sloboda (7-7) crushing them 100-79 in the Serbian 2MLS (second division) last Saturday.
Popovic had a double-double by scoring 20 points and getting 16 rebounds in 27 minutes.
Radnicki 1950 Kragujevac (11-3) is placed third in the 2MLS.
Popovic has averaged so far 8.2ppg and 4.5rpg in 13 games.
#4.Stefan Ljubenkovic (197-F-95, agency: Mansfield and Associates, currently plays in Serbia) was not able to help Spartak in their game against KK Napredak Rubin Krusevac (7-6) in the Serbian KLS.
He recorded 8 points and grabbed 6 rebounds in 24 minutes.
Spartak was crushed 101-77 in Krusevac by the lower-ranked (#8) KK Napredak Rubin.
Ljubenkovic has averaged so far 7.6ppg, 2.1rpg, 1.6apg and 1.3spg in 13 games.
He is another player who holds two passports: Montenegrin and Serbian.
Despite Ljubenkovic's Montenegrin nationality, he previously played for the Serbian U18 national team and probably cannot be called to the Montenegrin team.
#5. Experienced Dragomir Marojevic (207-C-81, currently plays in Bosnia) was not able to secure a victory for Gradjanski (3-8) in their game against Spars Sarajevo (6-5) in the Bosnia and Herzegovina Division I. Despite his very good performance last Sunday Marojevic was the top scorer with 30 points. He also added 8 rebounds (was perfect 8-for-8 from the free throw line).
Marojevic averaged so far 14.1ppg, 6.7rpg and 1.4apg.
#6.Nikola Korac (185-G-86, currently plays in Balkan League) couldn't help Bashkimi in their game against Sigal Prishtina in the Balkan League, despite his very good performance on Tuesday night.
He was the top scorer with 22 points. Korac also added made 4 passes and 3 steals (went 5 for 5 at the free throw line) in 37 minutes. It was his first game for Bashkimi this season.
But his team lost 81-87.
#7.Milos Komatina (206-F/C-84, currently plays in Romania) couldn't help BC Timisoara in their game against Pitesti in the Romanian Liga Nationala. Despite his very good performance in Sunday night's game Komatina recorded 13 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists.
Komatina averaged so far 12.6ppg, 3.3rpg, 2.4apg and 1.4spg.
#8.Nikola Mirotic (207-F/C-91, currently plays in NBA) couldn't help the Chicago Bulls in their game against the Dallas Mavericks in the NBA.
He scored 6 points and grabbed 5 rebounds in 22 minutes.
His team were edged 99-98 in the NBA.
Mirotic averaged so far 9.4ppg and 5.5rpg in 37 games.
He has both Montenegrin and Spanish nationalities.
#9.Mensud Julevic (200-PF-85, currently plays in Slovenia) couldn't help Terme Olimia in their game against Hopsi Polzela in the Slovenian Liga Nova KBM, despite his very good performance in Saturday night's game.
Julevic scored 17 points, grabbed 6 rebounds and dished 5 assists in 33 minutes.
But his team was edged 95-93.
Julevic averaged so far 12.2ppg, 6.3rpg, 2.4apg and 1.2spg in 14 games.
He also holds two passports: Montenegrin and Slovenian.
Despite Julevic's Montenegrin nationality, he previously played for the Slovenian U21 national team.
#10.Stevan Milosevic (211-C-85, agency: Interperformances, currently plays in Slovenia) managed to help Union Olimpija Ljubljana in a victory against the league outsider LTH Castings crushing them 90-70 in the Slovenian Liga Nova KBM in Tuesday night's game.
Milosevic scored 5 points in 17 minutes.
Milosevic has averaged so far 5.5ppg, 4.6rpg and 1.3apg in 13 games.
Jermaine Anderson (ex Chalons-Reims) is a newcomer at Mornar Bar - 1 day ago
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KK Mornar Basket Bar (Erste Liga) added to their roster experienced 34-year old Canadian ex-international point guard Jermaine Anderson (188-83, college: Fordham). He started the season at Chalons-Reims in French ProA. In 12 games he recorded 3.4ppg, 1.8rpg and 3.9apg this season. Anderson ended the last season at Braunschweig in German BBL where in 12 games he averaged 7.7ppg, 2.3rpg and 2.3apg. But the most of that year he spent at Betis Energia Plus Sevilla in Spanish Liga Endesa. In 1... [read more]
KK Mornar Basket Bar (Erste Liga) added to their roster experienced 34-year old Canadian ex-international point guard Jermaine Anderson (188-83, college: Fordham). He started the season at Chalons-Reims in French ProA. In 12 games he recorded 3.4ppg, 1.8rpg and 3.9apg this season. Anderson ended the last season at Braunschweig in German BBL where in 12 games he averaged 7.7ppg, 2.3rpg and 2.3apg. But the most of that year he spent at Betis Energia Plus Sevilla in Spanish Liga Endesa. In 15 games he had 3.3ppg, 1.3rpg and 1.1apg. The list of the past achievements is quite long as among others Anderson won Montenegrin League championship title in 2012. He was also voted Eurobasket.com All-Croatian A1 League Honorable Mention back in 2010. Anderson represented Canada at the World Championships in Turkey seven years ago. His stats at that event were 5 games: 8.4ppg, 2.2rpg, 3.0apg, 1.6spg, FGP: 28.6%, 3PT: 27.3%, FT: 75.0%. Anderson is quite experienced player. He has played also professionally in Greece (Panionios), Poland (Swiecie), Russia (Zenit), Germany (Gladiators and Walter Tigers), Croatia (Cibona and Cedevita), Montenegro (Buducnost) and Canada (Halifax Rainmen). Anderson attended Fordham University until 2006 and it is his eleventh (!!!) season as a professional player.
KK Mornar Basket Bar (Erste Liga) tabbed experienced 35-year old forward Cedomir Vitkovac (201-82, agency: BeoBasket). He played recently at KK Napredak Rubin Krusevac in Serbian KLS league. In two games he averaged 12.5ppg, 7.5rpg and 2.0apg this season. Vitkovac also played earlier that season for Apollon Patras in Greek A1 where in four KLS games he had 3.3ppg and 2.8rpg. Among other achievements he won Montenegrin League championship title in 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2014. Vitkovac... [read more]
KK Mornar Basket Bar (Erste Liga) tabbed experienced 35-year old forward Cedomir Vitkovac (201-82, agency: BeoBasket). He played recently at KK Napredak Rubin Krusevac in Serbian KLS league. In two games he averaged 12.5ppg, 7.5rpg and 2.0apg this season. Vitkovac also played earlier that season for Apollon Patras in Greek A1 where in four KLS games he had 3.3ppg and 2.8rpg. Among other achievements he won Montenegrin League championship title in 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2014. Vitkovac received also Eurobasket.com All-Montenegrin League Honorable Mention award back in 2014. He has played also professionally in Bosnia (Igokea) and Montenegro (Buducnost). Vitkovac is close to retirement age as a player. It may be one of last seasons in his extensive career, which he may end at Mornar Bar.
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