New Journey in Serbia
Kyle Randall enters his 4th season as a pro but his 1st playing aboard in Europe. He has spent the past 3 season playing in the NBDL and the PBL. He recently signed with OKK Konstantin in Serbia. He shares with myhoopjourney his new experiences of playing in Europe and the adjustments both on and off the court.
What’s up everybody? My name is Kyle Randall and this is a little snippet of my hoops journey… I am going into my 4th year as a pro. My first three years I played in the states in two leagues: NBA D-league and the Premier Basketball League. However, this season I decided to try something different and start my career overseas in Europe. I play in Niš, Serbia for OKK Konstantin. We play in the KLS which is 1st division in Serbia.
I’ve been here for exactly a week now. I left the states on Sunday afternoon, Oct. 23 and arrived in the city Monday night around 11pm. The flight was 12hrs long which easily took the title as the longest flight I have ever been on. The time here in Niš is 9hrs ahead of where I live in the states so sleeping was definitely an issue that night. My first practice was the next morning and I felt super tired but I still had to go out and prove myself to the team and coaches. Thankfully my first game wasn’t until Saturday so I had some time to let my body recovery from some major jet lag.
It’s definitely a different feeling being here than in the US. Going from being the majority to the minority is a weird feeling. I mean the language, food, culture, it’s all different. At first it was kind of shocking like “man I’m a long way from home,” but as the days go by I am becoming more and more comfortable. It’s like once you give yourself a routine everything starts to feel somewhat normal. It helps that the city I’m in isn’t that big so I figured my way around pretty quick.
From a basketball standpoint, I decided to play here because it is a good league to gain exposure and use as a stepping stone to build an overseas reputation. Since this is my first year ever playing in Europe, it is exactly what I was looking for. My team is cool we got some good pieces. The playing style is a lot different than in the states though. Here it’s more fundamental and less athletic. It’s not a bunch of high-flying dunks, iso’s and crazy crossovers. It’s more move the ball, screen, cut, etc. Surprisingly I think it may be more physical here than in the states. I played my first game on Saturday and the defense got away with a lot more bumping than I was used to. At the end of the day though, basketball is basketball so you just adjust and keep it moving. The more I play with my team in practice the better I get at playing their style.
All in all I loved playing in the states, I learned a lot. Now I am excited to learn a new style of hoops, a new culture and gain some experiences that will last my whole life. Until next time people, peace!