Sunday 9/6

This week I have gotten a dose of reality and how professional basketball is a business. There are no scholarships, it’s not a 4 year free ride like college anymore, it is perform or we will find someone who will. One of my teammates was released because they didn’t think he cut it and they are looking for someone else to fill his position. He is a 25 year old guy who is from Ukraine and played the 3. He is married and has a 14 month old baby girl. I can’t imagine how hard it would be to go home to his wife and tell her that they have to move already and find a new place to play. He had moved up from the 2nd division last year from a city in West Ukraine, and this was his first year in the Superleague. He was here no longer than 1 month and probably collected one months pay and now has to start the process all over of finding a new team, learning the system, getting to know his teammates, and moving his family, or give up basketball. It makes me thankful for everything that I have and motivates me to work that much harder because I know one day when I have a wife and kids, one thing I want to never do, or do as little as possible is to tell them I lost my job.
On a lighter note, this week has gone by fast. I am starting to get more and more comfortable and the days are getting shorter and shorter. I am on the same routine so I am starting to feel very settled and comfortable. I am able to watch a lot of television and movies between practices because I have about 5 hours where I want to do nothing but kick my feet up and relax. I have been able to watch Ray, an unbelievably good movie and great performance by Jamie Fox, that man is talented! He can sing, act, dance, and is a hilarious stand up comedian. The movie is great because it goes through all the ups and downs of a courageous mans life. It’s wild how we take things like our vision or hearing for granted daily, but this movie really makes you appreciate what God has blessed each of us with. It also gave me a great appreciation for Ray Charles was able to accomplish with his never give up, don’t let anything stand in his way, no matter how many obstacles there may be attitude. I have also watched Season 1 and 2 of the OC. The show is so bad, but so good at the same time. There is way too much drama and it is so fake just like most of the acting, Marissa and Johnny are terrible, but it’s so addicting. I love Seth and Summer’s relationship too, its classic, and they use every dynamic which makes it fun to watch the rollercoaster ride of an oddly great relationship. Although the show the OC is nothing like the real OC, it is hilarious to watch and reminds me of the good old days of high school! That was 8 years ago that I was starting my freshman year, time goes by way too fast!
We had our first scrimmage versus another team today that is in our league. We left at 1:30 took a 3 hour bus ride, again bumpy as hell; I am already way over the roads here in Ukraine. We ending up losing by 3 to a team we are better than, but we started the game horribly and we were all just trying to feel one another out and coach was playing different lineups to see who played well with one another. We played much better in the second half and even had a chance to win it, however free throws were missed. It was great to finally play a real opponent and not our second team, because we were able to see the areas we need to work on and that is taking care of the ball. Way too many wild and careless passes led to what must have been at least 25 or more turnovers. The game seemed very long though, because 4 quarters, 10 minutes in length and a stopping clock is much longer than college.
Personally, I played pretty well for my first scrimmage and real look at the Euro game. I had 14 points, 7 rebounds, and 0 assists in around 25-28 minutes of play. It could have been much better if I was able to hit some open threes that I had. I was 2-2 from the free throw line and 6-11 from the field 0 for 3 from 3 point range, 6-8 from 2 point range. Most of my points came off of layups in transition or drive and dishes. I had two face up jumpers in the post as well. Overall, I have a ton of room for improvement, just learning what I can and cant get away with, I was called for a travel which I definitely disagreed with, but they call it tighter over here and they don’t call fouls when you jump into someone, instead on tacky reaching or bump fouls. Also, our team has a ton of room to grow, we have most of the components, and just need to learn how to play together, but that will come with time. Going to Lithuania and playing 7 or 8 games in 10 days will be very beneficial to our growth as a team. I am excited I get to see another country because of basketball so that will make it 5 different countries in exactly a month that I have been here, not bad!
I’m about to jump on the bus and head to Lithuania, peace!


  1. Yo playa check yourself before you rag on the OC. You know that's my show. Greatest show ever you should feel lucky to be able to watch it on the reg in the ukraine. Solid numbers too. 2-2 from the line is my favorite. not like your days at usc hahaha miss u man keep it up

  2. Nice line on that game homeboy! Seems like you are doing your thing and learning a lot as well. That is awesome. Keep doing big things brotha.