FanPost

A conversation with a king

Imagine having to shoulder the weight of an entire country. A country where basketball is the second most popular sport, trailing only soccer. A country where you are the first citizen to ever lace up a pair of shoes in the N.B.A. A country where for the first time, N.B.A. fans finally have a hero to look up to. A King in fact. This is the reality for Israeli born player Omri Casspi.

In this year's N.B.A. draft, Casspi was drafted 23rd overall by the Sacramento Kings. Playing at the Small Forward position, Casspi has so far had a remarkable rookie season in a league where foreign players usually need a couple of years to adjust. Averaging 12.2 points per game and 4.8 rebounds, Casspi has become an instant fan favourite on the young and exciting Kings and alongside fellow team mate and rookie, Tyreke Evens, will represent the Kings at this year’s All Star Weekend in the Rookie Challenge.

Casspi's season might come as a surprise to many. Coming from Israel’s most successful basketball club, Maccabi Tel Aviv, Casspi has the credentials to back up the selection, which include being a key player on a championship team in 2009 and being awarded the Israeli League Sixth Man of the Year trophy for the 2008-2009 season. However, even with his background, talent and desire to succeed in the N.B.A. the results have been remarkable. As of December, Casspi has been ranked 3rd in the Rookie of the Year discussion by ESPN.com behind teammate Evens and Milwaukee Bucks Brandon Jennings, both of which were drafted in the top 10.

 

Shalom Life had a chance to speak to Casspi before the Kings game versus the Toronto Raptors on February 7th:

SL: How has your adjustment been to the NBA?

OC: It's been pretty good, you know. I had to make an adjustment on the court and off the court, obviously coming from a different country to a new city, new town, new house. Leaving all my family and friends in Israel and on the court, obviously this is the best league in the world with the best players, so I had to make quick adjustments to be able to play here.

SL: How does it feel knowing that you're the first Israeli playing in the NBA?

OC: It's a good feeling. It was never a goal to be the first Israeli player. Since I was young I dream about the NBA and it was a big dream for me and I'm just happy that I accomplished it and to represent me and my family and Israel.

 

Read the rest at the source: http://www.shalomlife.com/eng/4946/A_Conversation_with_a_King/

www.shalomlife.com

(This is a FanPost from a member of the Sactown Royalty community. The views expressed come from the member, and not Sactown Royalty staff.)

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Sactown Royalty

You must be a member of Sactown Royalty to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Sactown Royalty. You should read them.

Join Sactown Royalty

You must be a member of Sactown Royalty to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Sactown Royalty. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9347_tracker