Arvydas Sabonis RumorsAll NBA Players
The 1992 U.S. Dream Team is largely credited with starting a revolution across European basketball. For the NBA, though, the revolution came a few years earlier. In 1989, the league welcomed a wave of eastern European players led by Vlade Divac from Yugoslavia, Alexander Volkov from Russia, Drazen Petrovic from Croatia, and Sarunas Marciulionis, a 25-year-old shooting guard from Lithuania. Marciulionis adopted basketball as a full-time passion midway through his childhood. But even as he took to the game, it wasn’t clear that he’d be a superstar. While friends like Arvydas Sabonis were marked for a bright future early on, Marciulionis took longer to establish himself. He went to college and studied journalism, he played club basketball in Lithuania, and while the Soviet National Team monitored his progress as part of its juniors program, he was cut from the senior team three times throughout the 80s.
Paspalj talks about the gold medal that Serbia won in the 1995 EuroBasket Final after beating Arvydas Sabonis’ Lithuania in the Final. “You do not feel comfortable while it’s happening. That’s how it was before. We definitely did something great. We thought it was something completely natural and normal and we deserve to happen to us.”
Kerr called Jokic “one of my favorite players in the league” because of his vision and passing ability. And the Warriors coach has seen Jokic’s wide skill set first-hand, as he recorded a triple-double (17 points, 21 rebounds, 12 assists) the last time the teams met. “I always love watching players who just seem to be a move ahead on the chess board, and he’s one of those guys,” said Kerr, who also compared Jokic to Arvydas Sabonis “… They run everything through him and around him. He’s like the middle of the pinwheel, and you’ve got all these cutters and shooters around him. That’s why they’re so dynamic.”
“I worked on it this summer, just better basketball understanding, better reading so I think that’s the next step I’ve got to take on offence,” said Valanciunas, who even got some advice from countryman Arvydas Sabonis, one of the best passing big men in the history of the sport. “It’s not just about scoring, right? It’s about making the right play, being on the right spot, right timing, seeing the open cutters. You cannot be selfish if you want to win.”