So I was just looking through the 2014 mock draft, and I see Mario Hezonja at number 15, a name I didn't recognize.. Naturally, I type the name up in YouTube to check him out. He's an 18 year old, 6'7" shooting guard from Croatia. Here are a couple of his videos.
My first reaction is, "How am I just discovering this guy now?!" I sort of feel like I have found a thousand bucks lying on the ground or struck a gold mine or something... Someone answer this question, why am I so damn impressed with this kid? I am worried that I am delusional or something. When will we have a CroatianBaller on this site? There's Dario Saric and Mario Hezonja coming out of Croatia. CroatianBaller wouldn't get negged because he would actually have something to brag about. But back to this Mario kid. He just looks so smooth and has a great feel for the game. His shooting stroke is spot on. Hezonja also appears to have great handles and the ability to create his own shot. On top of all of that, this guy is a major athlete. Of course I haven't seen that much video of Hezonja, but he is definitely worth keeping an eye out for... or maybe I have just discovered my unknown affinity for Croatian people.
is undeniable, it's his attitude that might have some scouts looking the other way.
Scouts have known about him for some time and he could be the best European shooting guard to surface in a very long time. Croatia has a number of promising players coming through the ranks, Dragan Bender (97) is the next in line after Hezonja those two along with Saric will be the backbone of Croatian basketball in the future, exciting times.
Croatians are "to expirianced" to just brag about prospects not haveing sense this guys are still only prospects, not players. Unlike most other europian nations, Croatia was power in basketball since 1970. when former Yugoslavia won first world championship against USA lead by starting 5 Plecas, Tvrdic, Solman, Skansi, Cosic. till early 90is when Croatia had stars like Petrovic, Kukoc, Radja, Komazec..After that Croatia enterd "dark age" of our basketball, had many good players, but no stars. Most importantly had some big prospects that faild to maximize their talent. Most notable were Josip Sesar and Roko Ukic. Especially Sesar who was more talented then Drazen Petrovic.
So there is big difrece betwen having prospects and having players. And also besides Petrovic, Kukoc and Radja from Croatia Giricek had good role in NBA. Also 2 Serbian players Stojakovic and Radmanovic are Serbians but they are from Croatia and leard their first moves in Croatia + there were lot bech wormers in NBA. So Croatians don't feal special excitment abot posibility of haveing good NBA player.
Overall Croatia at moment has potentialy 4 lotto material prospects. Dario Saric, Mario Hezonja, Lovro Mazalin and Dragan Bender, while Nik Slavica might go 15-30
So yeah this kids with some other decent prospects might be end for dark age of Croatian basketball. But for now they are only prospects, they still have to rech their potential
Oh you're new to this site. Hezonja was actually rated much higher on the mock draft a couple months ago, I think top 5. If he gets his head on straight he could be atop prospect even in this loaded class. I've only seen highlight vids of him but he's got tons of potential.