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Montenegro Internationally
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Darko Pekic

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Erste Standings
 1. Teodo Tivat 19-3 
 2. Ibar Rozaje 16-7 
 3. Lovcen 16-8 
 4. Sutjeska 15-9 
 5. Ulcinj 13-11 
 6. S.Centar 9-14 
 7. Jedinstvo 8-16 
 8. Danilovgrad 6-18 
 9. Primorje 1945 4-20 
Play in international cups:
 1. Buducnost
 2. Mornar Bar
Full Standings
Last:3/26/2017
Prva B Standings
 1. Berane Bobcats 11-4 
 2. Zeta 8-7 
 3. Centar BP 8-8 
 4. Rudar 6-9 
 5. Strsljen 5-10 
Full Standings
Last:3/27/2017
Eurocup Standings
Group E
 1 Lokomotiv 5-1 
 2 Gran Canaria 4-2 
 3 Fuenlabrada 2-4 
 4 UCAM Murcia 1-5 
Group F
 1 B.Muenchen 6-0 
 2 Khimky 4-2 
 3 Lietkabelis 2-4 
 4 Ratiopharm 0-6 
Group G
 1 Hapoel J-M 5-1 
 2 Zenit 3-3 
 3 Lietuvos rytas 3-3 
 4 N.Novgorod 1-5 
Group H
 1 Valencia 6-0 
 2 Unicaja 3-3 
 3 Cedevita 2-4 
 4 ALBA 1-5 
Stage One Standings
Last:2/8/2017
Basketball Champions League Standings
Group A
 1. Monaco 12-2 
 2. Banvit BK 11-3 
 3. CEZ Nymburk 10-4 
 4. Aris 8-6 
 5. Fraport SKY 7-7 
 6. Ironi Nahariya 5-9 
 7. Helios 2-12 
 8. Bakken 1-13 
Group B
 1. Le Mans 9-5 
 2. Umana VE 9-5 
 3. Pinar Karsiyaka 9-5 
 4. Avtodor 7-7 
 5. Maccabi Rishon 7-7 
 6. Oradea 6-8 
 7. Kataja Basket 6-8 
 8. Khimik 3-11 
Group C
 1. ASVEL 10-4 
 2. Neptunas 10-4 
 3. EWE Baskets 10-4 
 4. PAOK 7-7 
 5. Ventspils 7-7 
 6. Usak 5-9 
 7. Openjobmetis V. 4-10 
 8. Rosa Radom 3-11 
Group D
 1. Iberostar Tener. 11-3 
 2. Scandone AV 10-4 
 3. Strasbourg 9-5 
 4. Juventus 8-6 
 5. Oostende 6-8 
 6. Cibona 5-9 
 7. Mega Leks 4-10 
 8. Mornar Bar 3-11 
Group E
 1. Besiktas 12-2 
 2. AEK Athens 9-5 
 3. Partizan 8-6 
 4. Ludwigsburg 8-6 
 5. Banco di Srd 7-7 
 6. Spirou 6-8 
 7. Stelmet ZG 4-10 
 8. Szolnok 2-12 
Last:1/25/2017
ABA League Standings
 1 Crvena Zvezda 25-1 
 2 Cedevita 20-6 
 3 Partizan 19-7 
 4 Buducnost 18-8 
 5 Igokea 13-13 
 6 Mega Leks 11-15 
 7 Cibona 11-15 
 8 Mornar Bar 10-16 
 9 FMP 10-16 
 10 Karpos Sokoli 10-16 
 11 Un.Olimpija 10-16 
 12 Zadar 9-17 
 13 Krka 8-18 
 14 MZT Skopje 8-18 
Last:3/13/2017
Balkan League Standings
Group C
 1 Beroe 5-1 
 2 Kozuv 3-3 
 3 Feni Industries 2-4 
 4 Sutjeska 2-4 
Group D
 1 Kumanovo 5-1 
 2 Teodo Tivat 3-3 
 3 Peja 3-3 
 4 Karpos Sokoli 1-5 
Last:3/1/2017
Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
 Milorad SUTULOVIC
  Danilovg.
  (196-G-90)
  Avg: 21.8
 1. Sutulovic, Danilovg.21.8 
 2. Miljanic, Primorje.19.5 
 3. Bjelic, Jedinstvo18.8 
 4. Latkovic, Lovcen18.6 
 5. Koljevic, S.Centar18.3 
 6. Jelenic, Ulcinj18.0 
 7. Knezevic, Lovcen17.1 
 8. Hadzibegovic, Danilovg.17.1 
 9. Bogojevic, S.Centar16.7 
 10. Felec, Ibar Rozaje16.4 
Rebounds Per Game
 Milos LOPICIC
  Lovcen
  (216-C-90)
  Avg: 10.3
 1. Lopicic, Lovcen10.3 
 2. Hadzibegovic, Danilovg.9.8 
 3. Jocovic, Primorje.9.5 
 4. Bjelic, Jedinstvo9.0 
 5. Draskovic, Jedin.8.3 
 6. Ljujic, Ibar Rozaje8.1 
 7. Miljanic, Primorje.7.5 
 8. Knezevic, Jedinstvo7.2 
 9. Bacovic, Primorje.7.2 
 10. Cekic, S.Centar7.1 
Assists Per Game
 Milos LATKOVIC
  Lovcen
  (196-G-93)
  Avg: 6.3
 1. Latkovic, Lovcen6.3 
 2. Stanojevic, Teodo T.5.7 
 3. Miljanic, Primorje.5.3 
 4. Jovanovic, Lovcen4.6 
 5. Ratkovic, Danilovgrad4.5 
 6. Kalic, Ibar Rozaje4.2 
 7. Fisik, Jedinstvo3.6 
 8. James, Sutjeska3.4 
 9. Nurkovic, Ibar R.3.2 
 10. Ljujic, Ibar Rozaje3.0 
Steals Per Game
 Milos LATKOVIC
  Lovcen
  (196-G-93)
  Avg: 2.8
 1. Latkovic, Lovcen2.8 
 2. Stanojevic, Teodo T.2.1 
 3. Ratkovic, Danilovgrad2.0 
 4. Lalic, Sutjeska1.9 
 5. Hadzibegovic, Danilovg.1.8 
 6. Ivanovic, Danilovgrad1.8 
 7. Gajovic, Sutjeska1.7 
 8. Kalic, Ibar Rozaje1.6 
 9. Nurkovic, Ibar R.1.6 
 10. Vukovic, Ibar R.1.6 
Blocks Per Game
 Marko LJUJIC
  Ibar Rozaje
  (207-C-90)
  Avg: 2.3
 1. Ljujic, Ibar Rozaje2.3 
 2. Bjelic, Jedinstvo2.0 
 3. Cekic, S.Centar1.6 
 4. Draskovic, Jedin.1.0 
 5. Vujovic, Sutjeska0.9 
 6. Lopicic, Lovcen0.9 
 7. Djurkovic, Sutjeska0.7 
 8. Hadzibegovic, Danilovg.0.6 
 9. Jeknic, Ulcinj0.6 
 10. Salic, Sutjeska0.6 
Poll

Montenegrin men teams in Euro cups 2016-2017
 Eurocup:
 Adriatic League:
 Balkan League:
 Bb Cham.League:

Next Round Schedule

Round 20 (Regular Season)

Berane Bobca Apr.1 Zeta 53%
Rudar 52% Apr.1 Strsljen
Next Round Schedule

Game 1 (Finals)

Valencia 84% Mar.28 Unicaja
Next Round Schedule

Game 2 (Quarter-Finals)

Iberostar Te 60% Mar.28 ASVEL
Umana VE 52% Mar.28 Pinar Karsiy
Ludwigsburg Mar.28 Banvit BK 63%
Banco di Srd Mar.28 Monaco 64%
Next Round Schedule

Game 2 (Semi-Finals)

Buducnost Mar.28 Crvena Zvezd 56%
Next Round Schedule

Game 2 (Semi-Finals)

Kumanovo 73% Mar.29 Peja
Beroe 66% Mar.28 Teodo Tivat
Exclusive New Year Interview with Soumaila Samake, former NBA center and big man of Mornar Bar - Dec 31, 2015


POSTED BY:
DARKO PEKIC
E-mail Darko:
Darko's Articles 
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Soumaila
Samake
Soumaila Samake (215-C-78) is a center from Mali, Africa, who started his professional career in Slovenia and reached the heights of NBA stardom, playing alongside Kobe Bryant (198-SG-78) in the Lakers. His career is also linked to Montenegro so take a look at this motivational story that proves once again how nothing is impossible,

Hello Soumaila, you took a very interesting basketball road. Born in Mali you were the first player from your country to get international recognition. Now players like Cheick Diallo (206-C/F-96) are following your footsteps. Could you tell us more about your childhood in Mali and how did you fall in love with basketball?

I Indeed I took a very interesting basketball road; especially if you look as far back as my childhood in Mali, which has absolutely no predictor that I will be a basketball player despite my God given gift of height.

As you know, Mali is a third world country in west Africa where soccer is the dominant sport perhaps because it requires minimum resources to be played; all you need is something round shaped like a ball. Basketball on the other hand, requires a lot more in term of resources and is a far less popular sport, which is mostly played in the capital, Bamako, and a little bit in few other regions of the country. I was born and raised in Bougouni, a rural locality of Mali located a little less than 200 Km from Bamako. Most of childhood was spent going to school, farming a lot, and playing soccer or other games with friends. Basketball was no part at all of my life or the life of other kids from Bougouni and I had never seen basketball being played until my teenager years when I finished secondary school and was sent to Bamako to continue studying.

My family did not have much financial means and in Bamako I was hosted by my sister (cousin) and was attending school and also working at the local market as a helper pushing shopping carts for some modest change. The market was located near the main athletic complex of the country where were located the only indoor basketball stadium of the country at the time, and outdoor practice courts for the top teams in the country. Working at this market was the turning point of my life as many people appeared impressed or amazed with my height and asked why I was not playing basketball. It is also that time that I met some very good friends who were very into basketball and wanted to try to teach me some basic skills. I then started venturing more often into the sport complex after a long day of school and work at the market to learn to play basketball. Of course, I quickly realized that my height could be a blessing in this sport when a local coach and very good friend named Serime dedicated his time in trying to develop my skills. He had very limited resources himself, but he was committed to helping me learn this game that I was starting almost too late; like many, he thought with hard work I could change my life playing basketball.

Well, it did not take too long for the first signs of a life changing opportunity to show. Only a year after I was first introduced to basketball, I drew the attention of one of the elite team, Stade Malien, which practiced in the sport complex. They asked me to join their junior team and started working more aggressively to develop my skills. This was the real beginning of my life as a basketball player, and from that point it was more better and better opportunities... with first international exposure coming through the junior national team of Mali the same year that I joined State Malien.

So yes, I took a very interesting basketball road, and as you can see from the little snapshot of my childhood, I could not have dreamed to be the first player from Mali to get international recognition. I am very blessed to have had the opportunities and I believe by being the first to achieve a certain level, my experience has directly or indirectly impacted many young athletes from Mali. It drew the attention of international basketball scout toward Mali and also inspired I hope many young kids to want to do as well or better than me. As I look back, Mali have had many outstanding international basketball players, both males and females, since my journey began and I hope that trend continues.

Today, when you look at guys like Cheick Diallo and others upcoming athletes that I believe would accomplish far more than I did, it shows you how far along Mali has come on the international scene and makes younger guys understand that everything is possible when you make the most of your opportunities. It is great for Basketball but it is even greater for MALI !!!!

The first stop on you basketball journey was a small basketball club Idrija from Slovenia. You joined them in 1996. How did you get a chance to play in Slovenia and was it a cultural shock at that time?

As I mentioned earlier, it did not take too long in my early days of playing basketball to join the junior national team of Mali; this was really my ticket to Slovenia. During the early 1990s, Mali was not very well known by international recruiters in basketball. Travels by teams, including junior and senior national teams, were for the most part limited to regional tournaments and, if qualified, to the African Championship that takes place every two years. However, this began to change in the mid 1990s when the junior national team started getting invitation to participate in tournament in France. It is during my first travel with the junior travel to France that I was approached by recruiters from Olimpija Ljubljana who asked me if I would be interested in playing in Slovenia. Shortly after the tournament and the return of the junior national team to Mali, I was on my way to Slovenia through Olimpija Ljubljana; to make a long story short, It is Olimpija that 'loaned' me to Idrija.

Slovenia was a real cultural shock at that time for many reasons. As you know, before going to Slovenia I had not really travelled much outside Africa, which is mostly not a cultural or racial difference from Mali; only that one short trip to France, but french is our official language in Mali. In Slovenia, however, everything was just different and I mean very very different from Mali in all aspects. One of the most difficult thing was making the language and diet adjustment, but I had to adjust very quickly to be able to achieve my goals and make the most of the opportunity. At the end I was able to quickly learn the language by taking private courses and I truly believe that this first step in my career was the most challenging one. However, I also believe that it prepared me psychologically for the remaining of my international career and my ability to adapt culturally to the many places I visited during my journey.

After a season with Idrija you joined a bigger club, Slovan Ljubljana and stayed there for two seasons and there you got noticed by NBA scouts and moved to United States to prepare for the 2000 NBA draft. How did playing few seasons of professional basketball in Slovenia affect you as a player? Did you consider yourself ready for NBA draft?

Playing few seasons in Slovenia was very instrumental in my basketball career. When I arrived in Slovenia, I had only played basketball for a few years and did not really have much skills. In retrospect, that was perhaps a good thing, because I did not have much of a bad habit and was able to learn the game the right way. Obviously being very tall and athletic, I was a great potential at the center position and there were no better place than Slovenia to develop the skills I needed. I spend tremendous amount of time working on all aspect of the game, from shooting, to moving without the ball, to using both left and right hands jump hook . even ball handling. So yes, I did consider myself ready for the NBA when it comes to my skill sets. But I was also aware of the fact that the NBA was another level and different than the style of basketball in Slovenia; given that I had only played basketball for a few year, I knew that I would need to continue developing both my skills and physically if drafted in the NBA.

At the draft night former New Jersey Nets selected you at draft pick number 36. You were better placed than some well known names in European basketball in later years: Igor Rakocevic (191-G-78), James Penn (178-PG-77, college: Ohio St.) or Pete Mickeal (199-F-78, college: Cincinnati, agency: Tycoon Sports Inc.). Could you tell us how did you feel that night knowing that you would be the first ever Mali player to represent your country in the NBA?

Draft night was a very the most memorable moment in my life. It was unbelievable to be drafted in the most dominant and advertised basketball league in the world. Yes, I was drafted before some of the more known names in both european and US collegiate basketball, but that was not really all that important to me. What really mattered is that a young man from a very rural part of one of the poorest country in the world was about to join the major league of the richest country in the world. It was not something I could have ever dreamed of and I am sure many asked themselve that night the following question: Where in the world is MALI? And that was important to me that night of course I was also thinking about my family back home and what I would be able to do to help them now.

You played for Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Lakers and after two years in NBA you moved to China where you spent most part of your career. What did you like most about playing in China?

What I like most about playing in China was the people and their passion for basketball; the Chinese people really love basketball! Playing in the NBA I was already aware of how international and global the sport of basketball was, but I was still amazed by the interest and passion that the Chinese people had for the sport. I remember every game so many fans coming, sometime in very cold gymnasium, and cheering with such great passion for their teams. I also want to mention how humble people are in China, and that was everyone that I met from regular citizens to basketball stars, all were very nice and humble; I appreciated that. Great Place! Great People!

In March 2010 you joined Mornar from Bar and played for them in Montenegrin league and Balkan league. You made it to the Semifinals of Montenegro league and you showed your class even though you were already a veteran. Why you decided to move to Montenegro at that point of your career?

Going to Montenegro was just an opportunity that came up, which I welcome very much. I decided to move to Montenegro because I had already spend a lot of time in China and I was edging toward the last stretch of my career, so going back close to where it all started sounded good to me. I did not expect it to be any different than Slovenia in term of style of basketball and wanted to see how I will do in the Montenegrin League.

Knowing that Slovenia and Montenegro were part of former Yugoslavia it was not probably hard for you to adapt to the living conditions and language barrier. What are your impressions from Montenegro?

You are absolutely right that adapting in Montenegro was not hard for me giving their historic relationship with Slovenia. In fact, there were not much to adapt for me and it felt almost like a homecoming. You know, wherever I have been it is really the people that I enjoyed the most. And Montenegro was not any different, people were very welcoming and nice to me. Sports is one of the best way to break all barriers in my opinion; whether it is barriers between races, countries, cultures, or even religions, sports just seem to bring people together and that is very nice I think.

After playing two more seasons in Iran and Canada you decided to retire at the end of 2011. Did you feel it was perfect time to call it the end at the age of 34?

Yes, I did feel it was the perfect time to end. As you know, I had been doing a lot of travel around the world during my basketball career, flying in very tight airplane seats for some time more than 10 hours, sleeping in hotel beds that were not even close in length to my height, eating out almost every day, etc. Although all this is nothing compared to some of the conditions that I lived while growing up in MALI, it start taking a physical and even a psychological toll on you as you get older. I was blessed and very thankful that throughout my career to that point, I never had any major injury, and looking at the direction that my career was taking I felt that it was time to end while healthy and enjoy a more stable lifestyle.

How did your organize your free time after retirement and does Soumaila Samake have plans to stay inside basketball world?

After retiring, I took some time to relax and figure out what is next for me. I have two great sons that I now have a better relationship with, which is probably the most important thing to me. Of course at 34, I also need to find something else that I could do for income and one of the thing that I always wanted to do is start a trucking business in the US. So right now, I am driving a huge 18-wheeler interstate in the US and plan to start my own trucking company in 2017. What is interesting about this is that I would not have ever dream of driving or owning a car in my life had not been for basketball. So yes, I do plan to stay inside the basketball world. I don't even thing it is a choice since all my good and closest friends were met through basketball, and almost all my former teammates in MALI are basketball coaches; whether it is local teams or national teams. I follow the NBA on a daily basis and I look forward to seeing another player from MALI step in this great league and I believe that will be very soon with talented guys like Cheik Diallo and his generation.

Thank you for this interview Soumaila. I wish you all the best in all your future endeavours.

Thank you very much for an opportunity to tell my story. And a special thanks to all the great and helpful people that I met throughout my career way too many to name.   




Milos
Vujovic
Erste Basketball League Round 27: Ho luck for home teams in last round of the regular season - 1 day ago
The regular season has finally ended and the the top 6 teams (Teodo, Ibar, Lovcen, Sutjeska, Ulcinj and Studentski centar) will play in the play-offs while everybody else are on a long vacation until next season. Even though everything was decided before the last round there is a curiosity- in the last round no home team was able to get a win! Let's start with the game Jedinstvo-Ibar (69-77). The game was pretty close until last quarter but then Ibar proved to be a better team and increas...   [read more]

Bojan
Dubljevic
Bojan Dubljevic selected the top Montenegrin playing abroad in last week's games - 4 days ago
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 power forward Bojan Dubljevic (205-91, agency: BeoBasket). He led Valencia Basket to a victory over the league leader CB Canarias in the Spanish Liga Endesa in Sunday night's game.    [read more]

Igor
Cvorovic
Erste Basketball League Round 26: Home teams got all wins, big men dominated and Teodo won the regular season - 5 days ago
Everything is known in Erste Basketball League and everybody are waiting for the play offs so the Round 26 did not bring much excitement as the previous round. Ibar finally got a win after few defeats and this time against Studentski centar at home (93-83). Post players Nikola Rondovic(207-PF-91, agency: Interperformances) (24 points) and Marko Ljujic (207-C-90) (21 points) played well for the winners while Marko Koljevic had another scoring night and had 24 points for the guests. Lovce...   [read more]


1 | 2 | 3
Orleans add Milosevic to their roster - 5 days ago  
Prva B Round 18: Centar BP defeat leader Berane Bobcats - 6 days ago  
Ratkovic's 17 points and 7 assists give him Player of the Week award - 7 days ago  
Best players of Montenegrin Erste Liga round 23 - 9 days ago  
Erste Basketball League Round 25: Danilovgrad defeated Primorje in Herceg Novi and deserved to stay to keep its place in first division - 10 days ago  
KK ABS Primorje 1945 Herceg Novi inks Brandon Bilbija, ex Ryerson - 11 days ago  
Erste Basketball League Round 24: Lovcen and Ibar upset favorites, another big win for Danilovgrad - 12 days ago  
Prva B Round 17: Strsljen defeats Zeta in the closest game of the week - 15 days ago  
Erste Basketball League Round 23: Big win for Danilovgrad in Podgorica - 15 days ago  
Bojan Dubljevic's double-double lands him Player of the Week award among Montenegrins playing currently abroad: - 18 days ago  
Cekic number one in Montenegro for round 22 - 21 days ago  
Milos Latkovic's triple-double lands him Player of the Week award - 23 days ago  
Erste League Round 22: Three exciting games in the most interesting round of the regular season - 23 days ago  
Adriatic League: Mornar Bar roll past Igokea - 24 days ago  
Prva B Round 16: Zeta top Centar BP - 24 days ago  
Erste League Round 21: Home teams show no mercy. Milos Latkovic got a tripple double - 25 days ago  
Best players of Montenegrin Erste Liga round 20 - 29 days ago  
Erste Basketball League Round 20: Big win for Teodo against Sutjeska, Danilovgrad looses by 1 at home and the battle to avoid relegation intensifies - 25 days ago  
Nikola Vucevic selected the top Montenegrin playing abroad in last week's games - 1 month ago  
Adriatic League: Union Oimpija rally past Buducnost - 1 month ago  
1 | 2 | 3

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