Tomorrow kicks off before the Olympics in Belgrade. In theory, what Serbia should have played: they were the favorites to win the gold medal at the 2019 World Cup in China. But the defeat in the quarter-finals and the victories of France (over the United States) and Spain at the same time have two effects: the need to qualify despite the silver medal in office, as well as the end of an era Sasha Djordjevic.
So let’s get to know the men who Igor Kokoskov He wanted in the pursuit of defending the silver of Rio despite the numerous defections (Nikola Djokic, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Alain Smilajic, Alexei Bokosevsky, the most important of them, in addition to various injuries).
Milos Teodosic He occupies the role of captain of the Serbian formation. The Wizard of Virtus Bologna in every sense of the word from the 2019-20 season. To define it, one definition by Kevin Durant at the beginning of 2021 would suffice: “The best trail I’ve ever been on.” They only encountered each other once. Believing that in the NBA, due to injury problems, Teodosic had little left, and with Durant he met, as an opponent, only once. However, sometimes, one is enough. Just for the numbers, this year he averages 15.4 points and 6.9 assists in the European Cup, and 12.7 and 6.7 in the League. But they are really numbers. They do not convey the idea of what you see with your eyes.
Philip Petrushev He is a 21-year-old midfielder who, after two college seasons, has decided to go pro with Mega, in Belgrade. 211 cm for 107 kg, he traveled with an average of 23.6 points and 7.6 rebounds. His interpretation of the game near the basket is usually Slavic, because he adds excellent technique to his excellent physical skills. At Gonzaga, he did well in the second year before going home.
Nemanja Bielica He plays in the NBA with the Miami Heat. At 33, the 208cm x 106kg winger had a season in decline, after the best year of his career, the previous year with the Sacramento Kings. Pay attention to how well he throws the three points: When he’s good, he’s easily overtaken by 40%.
Nikola Kalinic He is one of the most famous men in basketball in Europe, and not just for his distinctive face. In Valencia five years after Fenerbahce, the 203cm x 105kg winger often lived between the starting lineup and the substitute. In Spain he traveled about 10 points on average between Liga ACB and Euroleague, but when it comes to being there in the hot moments, he’s there.
Dragan Milosavljevic He recently joined Mega, in Belgrade, after four years at Unicaja Malaga. A goalkeeper with a weight of 198 cm and a weight of 91 kg, has actually been really unlucky for the past two years: while preparing for the World Cup in China 2019, he broke his cruciate ligament, and had to stay abroad for 15 months. Moreover, Unicaja kicked him out last February. Perhaps the greatest unknowns.
Stefan Jovic He plays as a theatrical and in the last two seasons he was in Khimki Moscow, and he is currently experiencing very serious financial problems. His year has been pretty choppy, a little bit because of his problems and a little bit because of the team’s problems. This would be a change for Teodosic, but he would be the owner in almost any other version of Serbia.
Vasilije Micic It has only one definition: an outstanding figure. This is the only way to determine one of the drivers of Anadolu Efes, 196cm in 92kg, towards the historic first European League. He finished it with very powerful blows for Barcelona, with 25 points in the final. He has an average of 16.7 on the continent, and the good (or bad depending on your point of view) is that he can literally score goals whenever he wants.
Diane Davidovak He is among the newest faces in the Serbian formation. The red star’s young striker goalkeeper, 203 cm in 95 kg, was of moderate use in the last Euroleague with 7.2 points per game. He should not be among the main heroes, but he will find him for a few minutes.
Alexa Avramovich We know him in Italy, and also very well: he played at Varese from 2016 to 2019, and exploded in third place with more than 17 points on average and around 40% off three points per game. It is very good to see him on the field, with a length of 192 cm and 87 kg, he then went to Spain, first to Unicaja and then to Estudiantes.
Ognjen Dobrić He is Davidovak’s classmate at Red Star. The goalkeeper winger is also, 200 cm against 93 kg, often leaves the bench with the red and white club, putting himself in the spotlight with an average of 8.3 points and above all 45.6% of three. It’s like he’s saying it’s better to be careful of him when he steps on the field.
Danilo Angusic Virtus Bologna had hosted him for several years (2013-2014 season), but in the meantime he became a translator for the role of goalkeeper. At the age of thirty, with 195 cm in 92 kg, JL Bourg has raised the bar a lot: he will be one of the guys to watch out for as a potential surprise.
Boban Marjanovic It is definitely not new. 32 years, 224 cm and 132 kg of service experience he uses with the Dallas Mavericks when needed, he can show his qualities more in Europe than in the ocean with the Dallas Mavericks because he is underutilized. Potentially a mystery to defenses, it’s not entirely ideal to send it to the line, as it always shoots over 70% (in certain seasons even over 80%).
Photo: La Presse