In a recent interview with Igor Marinovic of Sportske Novosti in Croatia, the Magic's Nikola Vucevic said that Bojan Bogdanovic's recent troubles shouldn't cause him to panic, that the transition from the Euroleague to the NBA is never easy.
"Basketball as a game in the NBA is not the game it is in Europe nor in college," said Vucevic, who is from Montenegro and has known Bogdanovic for years. Bogdanovic had what was probably his worst game vs. the Cavaliers, going scoreless in only two minutes of action. He has lost his starting job to another European, Sergey Karasev who coincidentally had his best game in Cleveland.
A shooting slump, like the one Bogdanovic experienced, or even a few bad games, shouldn't discourage Vucevic, who had a tough start in the NBA and is now one of the league's top big men.
He explained, "Bogdanovic certainly is not accustomed to this pace because in Europe you do not play three, four or even five times a week. A crisis will be quite normal and expected, and it happens to the best. In the season you have 82 games and it is only natural that the two or three you play poorly."
Vucevic also said nothing is more important in the transition than being familiar with the English language. "It's not easy when you get the instructions in the noisy hall during important matches."
He still likes Bogdanovic's chances.
"I first met Bojan at the 2009 U-20 European Championship in Rhodes. By then I saw that he will be a great basketball player. He's demonstrated it," said Vucevic. :He came into a good and ambitious team, brought a great game and fought for a place in the starting five, which is no small matter."