site.btaBasketball Player Vezenkov on NBA Rookie Year: Weird Season with Ups, Downs, Injuries Held Me Back

Basketball Player Vezenkov on NBA Rookie Year: Weird Season with Ups, Downs, Injuries Held Me Back
Basketball Player Vezenkov on NBA Rookie Year: Weird Season with Ups, Downs, Injuries Held Me Back
Bulgarian basketball player Sasha Vezenkov (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

Bulgaria's Sportsperson of the Year 2023, basketball player Aleksandar ‘Sasha’ Vezenkov, gave a press conference commenting on his first season with the Sacramento Kings in NBA. In their final match, the Kings missed out on booking a spot in the NBA playoffs, losing to the New Orleans Pelicans 98-105 in a play-in tournament elimination game.

"Overall, I can say it was a weird season. Ups and downs. New game, new life. A couple of injuries, you know. I tried to adjust as fast as possible. Unfortunately, we finished too early. Everybody wanted to continue and go deep into the playoffs. We have to learn from that. It was a new experience and I wanted to become better every day. Unfortunately, those two injuries held me back. That situation was a little bit difficult and different," Vezenkov explained.

"First of all, the talent the players have here [in the NBA], it is insane. You can see it from [the] TV but live, it is something else. Other than that, the pace of the game, how fast the transition [is], everything. I need to improve everything […] The only good part is that the offseason is long, so everybody has plenty of time to work and become better," he added.

Vezenkov admitted he does not have any plans for the season break yet. He said he feels like he is at home in the US] but will go back to Bulgaria first and then will see. The Bulgarian noted that he always trains during the offseason. In Europe, there is not that much time because basketball seasons end in mid-June, Vezenkov stressed, adding that now he has some five to six months until next season and will that time to improve his overall performance.

In his words, it is quite difficult when there is a core of some seven players in the team and the others have to wait for their chances to play. It is hard to maintain rhythm with limited time on court. You need mental resilience and to be physically healthy, so you can make it throughout the season, Vezenkov further said.

"I made the right choice [to continue his career in the NBA], no doubt about it. If I doubt about other things, 100%, but not about the choice to come here. It was a great opportunity, [you] can't say no, it is the NBA," Vezenkov said, noting that it is still difficult for him to adjust from being the EuroLeague MVP and reach the level of play in the NBA.

In his debut season in the NBA, Vezenkov played 42 games in total, missing much of the second half of the campaign due to injuries. Here are his per-game averages: 12.2 minutes, 5.4 points, 44% shooting success rate, 37.5 long-range shooting success rate, 2.3 rebounds, 0.5 assists, 0.5 steals and 0.2 blocked shots.

/VE/

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By 22:35 on 23.05.2024 Today`s news

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