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
KK Danilovgrad (Erste Liga) landed 26-year old Montenegrin guard Milorad Sutulovic (196-90). He played most recently at Lastovka in Slovenian Liga Nova KBM. In 21 games he averaged 11.0ppg, 2.8rpg and 2.0apg last season. Sutulovic helped them to make it to the cup final. He also played that season for Studentski Centar Podgorica where in 6 Erste Liga games he had very impressive stats: 21.7ppg, 4.2rpg, 1.5apg and 1.5spg. Among other achievements Sutulovic's team won Bosnia and Herzegovina... [read more]
KK Danilovgrad (Erste Liga) landed 26-year old Montenegrin guard Milorad Sutulovic (196-90). He played most recently at Lastovka in Slovenian Liga Nova KBM. In 21 games he averaged 11.0ppg, 2.8rpg and 2.0apg last season. Sutulovic helped them to make it to the cup final. He also played that season for Studentski Centar Podgorica where in 6 Erste Liga games he had very impressive stats: 21.7ppg, 4.2rpg, 1.5apg and 1.5spg. Among other achievements Sutulovic's team won Bosnia and Herzegovina League Regular Season in 2011. He represented Montenegro at the European Championships U20 in Croatia six years ago. His stats at that event were 8 games: 2.5ppg. Sutulovic is a very experienced player. He has played also professionally in Serbia (OKK Beograd), Slovenia (Un.Olimpija), Montenegro (Buducnost, KK ABS Primorje 1945 Herceg Novi, Buducnost II Podgorica and KK Podgorica), Bosnia (Leotar, Igokea and HKK Zrinjski HT Mostar) and Kosovo (Futura).
Danilovgrad also announced the signing of Bojan Ratkovic who last year played for Ibar Rozaje.
KK Gusinje Strsljen (Erste Liga) agreed terms with experienced 34-year old American forward Carl Lee (198-102kg-82, college: Utah Valley). The last time (9-10) he played at Lusitania in Portuguese LPB league. Lee missed last season and had one year break from professional basketball. The list of the past achievements is quite long as among others Lee won Portuguese Proliga championship title in 2010. He was also voted Eurobasket.com All-Portuguese Proliga Honorable Mention back in 2010. L... [read more]
KK Gusinje Strsljen (Erste Liga) agreed terms with experienced 34-year old American forward Carl Lee (198-102kg-82, college: Utah Valley). The last time (9-10) he played at Lusitania in Portuguese LPB league. Lee missed last season and had one year break from professional basketball. The list of the past achievements is quite long as among others Lee won Portuguese Proliga championship title in 2010. He was also voted Eurobasket.com All-Portuguese Proliga Honorable Mention back in 2010. Lee is quite experienced player. He has played also professionally in USBL (Brooklyn K.), ABA (Tampa Bay SD), ABA BC (Brooklyn C.) and NPBL (NY Strikeforce). Lee attended Utah Valley University until 2004 and it will be his 13th (hopefully lucky) (!!!) season as a professional player.
Split completed their roster for the upcoming season by inking their former member Mateo Kedzo(206-F/C-84) on an open contract. Kedzo arrives from Greek side Doxa Leafkadas, where he averaged 8.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 0.6 assists and 0.3 steals in 27 Greece A2 League games last season. He already played for Split from 2002 through 2007 and during the 2014-15 season, averaging 15.3 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 8 Croatian A1 League games. [read more]
Split completed their roster for the upcoming season by inking their former member Mateo Kedzo (206-F/C-84) on an open contract. Kedzo arrives from Greek side Doxa Leafkadas, where he averaged 8.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 0.6 assists and 0.3 steals in 27 Greece A2 League games last season. He already played for Split from 2002 through 2007 and during the 2014-15 season, averaging 15.3 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 8 Croatian A1 League games.
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