Interview: Kasım Ersoy, TrendBasket


The Sacramento Kings, who are about to put an end to the season, hosted the third-placed team in the Western Conference, the Houston Rockets. Visitor team managed to win with ease. Prior to tip-off, Kings’ veteran center Kosta Koufos answered our questions.

First of all, how did the season go for you guys?

It’s still a learning curve for everybody and we’re improving. We understand the game of basketball is a business right now. Everybody is improving every single day, which is good.

After Cousins trade, you have won seven out of 22. Do you think there was a change in your game and/or team’s overall performance without him?

Like I said, it’s a business. Cousins is one of the best bigs in the NBA. For us, there are young guys who are developing nicely and everybody here has a bright future.

You played one season in Ohio State and then moved to the NBA immediately. Unlike the other European players, why did you decide to not play in Europe?

You know, I was an American-born citizen. So, it is a different scenario. For me, though, playing in Ohio State was always one of my dreams. I fulfilled that dream and time was right. You have to go when time is right. You never know what can happen in the future. I’ve been very fortunate to be healthy throughout my whole career. God has blessed me with the ability to play basketball.

Kasım Ersoy/TrendBasket

Kasım Ersoy/TrendBasket

Recently, we have seen a lot of European talent coming to play in the NCAA. What is the main thing that a European player could get by playing in the NCAA?

Just getting a little bit more prepared for the NBA. At the same time, though, there are a lot of super-talented European players who play in Europe right now. They can play in the NBA but they choose not to. You know, the NBA is always changing, every single year. I feel like there will be more European players coming over and I feel like it’s changing the dynamic of the league in a good way for the NBA.

In the NBA, you have played in five different teams. What is your most favorite location to live in out of these five?

It’s always different cities you play in, especially when it comes to restaurants, fans etc. I’ve been very lucky, coached by very good coaches in my whole career. I’ve had a good career, you know, almost 10 years now. I’ve learned a lot from each city. Each has special dynamics. Here in Sacramento, I’ve learned that fan base is really strong, regardless of scenarios on the court. As players, we’re very fortunate for that.

Are we going to see you in EuroBasket 2017, representing Greece?

Oh, I don’t know yet. I’m not thinking about it. I’m just thinking about the game today.

In the summer, you’ll be a free agent. Are you willing to stay in Sacramento for a longer term?

I’m not thinking about that either. That is not the right time right now. I’m focusing on taking it day by day. When an opportunity arises, I’ll cross the bridge when I come to it.

Kasım Ersoy

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