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Darko Milicic: “I thought as a kid that talent was God-given, but it’s not. God gives you talent and you should use that talent with the real meaning of that word. I was stubborn. Maybe being young had something to do with it. There was option then of going to the NBA or staying in Serbia because Hemofarm knew that if I went to NBA they would get more money than they would get if I went to some European club. Here you had poverty and money was there.”
Darko Milicic: “Their system is cruel and I don’t like it. If a young player doesn’t succeed, they don’t look after him. That sucks. You have players who are first or second in the draft that get a chance to play. I didnt get the chance. LBJ is a killer now, but he did get a chance in his first year, he could shoot from the stands if he wanted. I barely got the chance. I had that situation in Orlando where if I shoot from perimeter, my coach Hill would yell, “Pass to Howard.” In Detroit nothing went right. Larry Brown always told me to go near the basket. They offered me a $40 million, four-year contract in Orlando, and then their manager blows it off, out of nowehere. My manager told me he would deal with it. I said OK, but just not Memphis. Anywhere but there. And, of course, I went to Memphis. Then I got injured, didn’t play much.
Darko Milicic: “I wanted to go back to Europe but then the Minnesota offer came. I tried to talk them out of of signing me, I said I won’t practice, I will make trouble in the locker room but they were persistent. They told me give it two weeks, if it doesn’t work you can go. I accepted, it was nice and I played but we didn’t win. Rambis was fired and after Adelman came I realized it’s not gonna work. Pekovic started playing well, and I thought, “Never mind, I’ll come off the bench.” But it just didn’t work. And then I just quit.
Darko Milicic: “I can’t play with American players. They only talked about who dunked on whom, who crossed over whom. I was weird to them because I didn’t think that way.”
Darko Milicic: “It’s all funny to me. I finally get a chance to play and (Mutombo) starts taunting me and daring me to fight. Why would I need that? I didn’t understand half of what he said. I mean, he’s been there 20 years and still doesn’t know the language well enough. Nobody in particular annoyed me, but Kobe Bryant is the dirtiest player with the things he does on the court… But without a doubt he is a beast. He was amazing.”
“I don’t miss basketball. I live very well, thank God. I have my interests, interests in agriculture,” says Darko Milicic in an exclusive interview for Blic.
Former NBA center Darko Milicic, a 7-foot Serb who spent 10 years with various teams after being the second overall pick in the 2003 draft behind LeBron James, has lost his first kickboxing fight. The 29-year-old Milicic sustained a bloody cut on his left leg in the first round of an exhibition match Thursday night against Serbian fighter Radovan Radojcic. The World Kickboxing Association bout had to be stopped in the second round on doctor’s orders. “The next time, it will be better,” Milicic said. “I’m invincible.”
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July 24, 2016 | 4:25 pm EDT Update
Reports in the Venezuelan press seem to indicate that Greivis Vasquez’s status with the Venezuelan Olympic team remains uncertain. Vasquez didn’t play this weekend in a “friendly” game vs. Spain, meaning that of the Venezuelans’ four friendlies so far, he’s only played in one vs. Lithuania and only 17 minutes in that one, contributing three points, an assist, and a rebound. In the matches against Belarus and the Netherlands he did not participate at all because he was working out the details of his contract with Brooklyn. He signed a one-year, $5 million contract, including bonuses, in New York on July 10.
In explaining why Vasquez did not play against Spain, Venezuelan coach Nestor Garcia said he has been “concentrating on getting in shape physically.” Vasquez had surgery in December to remove a bone spur and loose bodies from his ankle. He was expected to be ready to return in April, but the Bucks season had already ended by then. There’s been no indication that Vasquez won’t be ready for training camp in October.
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson: New York traffic and rent are disrespectful!!! Y’all gotta compromise take some cars out or take some numbers down lol. If you do not live in NY you should have to drive to the surrounding areas to park in a garage and have to use public transportation.
July 24, 2016 | 12:20 pm EDT Update
Beasley has played with four teams in eight years, including two stints with the Heat. He’s only 27 and perhaps with discipline and a couple of breaks could develop into a dependable rotation player. That’s why he was in Las Vegas. “I feel as if I’ve always been prepared. I’ve been one to take my game seriously, but it’s just a little more special, a little more precious, just slow down and enjoy the ride this time,” he said. “My first time, I was 19, 20 years old, I thought I knew everything and y’all gave me all the money in the world, so I wasn’t thinking to look at y’all [in the eye] anymore. I’m doing it the right way this time, slowing down, enjoying the process, falling in love with the process.
“That’s the misconception a lot of people get, NBA guys go to China and average big numbers and automatically you think the talent is not as good,” he said. “It isn’t, but it’s not that far off. It will be the same thing if I was here [in the NBA] and my team was giving me the ball all 48 minutes. “You get the ball a lot, so you ain’t gotta force no shots or take no bad shots — always taking the right shots, making the right plays. Your IQ and talent will take over from there.
Instead of pursuing a front-office position, Howard decided he wanted to coach. “I couldn’t turn that offer down and I have the bug because of him and learning from a guy like [Spoelstra], one of the best coaches in the NBA,” Howard said. “He doesn’t win championships by mistake, obviously he’s doing something right. This is one of the most bright individuals I’ve ever met and that is a fact.” Howard played for one of the most popular and recognized teams in NCAA history with the Michigan Fab Five of the early 1990s. Now he’s coaching players who were born after the quintet left Michigan and have only YouTube video to reference those days. Twenty-plus years later, Howard fully understands the dismay he may have caused some of his coaches, and he uses that experience with his twenty-something crew.