25 February 2019 - In the direct clash for Europe’s last World Cup ticket, Latvia won 80-74 against Montenegro on the last game day. However, the Latvians needed a win with 9 points or more to qualify; hence, Montenegrians will be the ones traveling to China.
Latvia was holding the lead for all forty minutes and was above the needed margin multiple times during the game. In fact, Dairis Bertans shot twice in the last 15 seconds to reach the nine-point margin but fell short while on the other side, Derek Needham banked the free throws to secure Montenegro’s World Cup ticket.
Needham nailed 22 points while Marko Todorović scored 13 in addition to Bojan Dubljević’s and Aleksa Popović’s 11 points each.
For Latvia, Janis Strelnieks had an excellent game notching game-high 25 points while missing only one shot from the field (8-9). Martin Meiers added 12 and Janis Timma 11 points.
"It is difficult to find the words to explain how I feel tonight, especially because I remember very well when we started a year ago without any idea, but really any idea at all of going to the World Cup. We competed to get to the Second Round and it was our goal. Tonight I am delighted because all of these guys who played, they all deserve this. Like Blagota (Sekulić) kept saying, we are really, really, extremely happy. And for our country, you saw the atmosphere; it was really amazing tonight. Congratulations to everybody," said Montenegrin coach Zvezdan Mitrović.
Montenegrin forward player Blagota Sekulić also noted that the game was very hard and that this is a historical win for sports in Montenegro.
"It was a challenging game. We knew that this team is different from the previous game with five players who never played in the Qualifiers before. So we knew it would be a tough game because those players are great shooters and it isn't easy to guard them. Somehow we made it come true, and we did something historically great for basketball and sport in Montenegro," said Sekulić.
Head coach of Latvia Arnis Vecvagars congratulated Montenegro and wished the players good luck in China.
"First of all, I would like to congratulate Montenegro for qualifying to the World Cup. Good luck to them there. Talking about today's game, the main reason we did not get the result we wanted is defensive rebounding. We allowed too many offensive rebounds. We allowed too many second-chance points, and in the second half, we had a lot of plays one on one where we did not execute defensively as necessary. Obviously in the last minute of the game, our team's offense was different because of the injury to our point guard Janis Strelnieks. As you all could see, the Montenegro team could not stop him," concluded Vecvagars.
17 February 2019 - Devin Williams has decided to part ways with Büyükçekmece and will continue the rest of the season with Budućnost Voli.
Basketball Club Budućnost Voli Podgorica (Erste Liga) just signed a contract with 24-year-old American international centre Devin Williams. Williams started the season at Demir İnşaat Büyükçekmece Basket in Turkish BSL league. In 17 games he had very impressive stats: 17.7ppg, 11.9rpg, 1.9apg and 1.0spg this season.
Williams arrived last night in Podgorica and in an interview for CdM, he said that his desire was for the team to defend the ABA League trophy. The former centre of Turkish Büyükçekmece was brought by Budućnost with the goal to help the current champion of the Adriatic in winning the second consecutive title.
"I just landed and all I can say is that the city is not too big, but you can feel the community, that the whole city stands behind the club, like a large family. I just want to be the best I can, find my role and work hard as always," Williams said.
To recall, 2018 was a very spectacular year in Williams’ career as he was named to Turkish League All-Star Game and League Player of the Week (2 times). Williams ended the last season at Team Fredette in U.S. semi-pro league The Basketball Tournament, as he helped them to make it to the semi-finals. But the most of that year he spent at Vaqueros (BSN) in Puerto Rican league where in 21 games he recorded 13.6ppg, 8.8rpg (#2 in the league) and 1.6apg. For him, this was a quite impressive season as he was named to Latinbasket.com All-Puerto Rican BSN Honorable Mention, All-Star Game and also here League Player of the Week.
"This is my first season in Europe and the chance to play in ABA and Euroleague is a blessing and reward for the hard work I have invested in me. I want to help the team win as many victories as possible and defend the ABA League title. I would like to thank the team, city, president of the club, coaches and everyone who gave me this opportunity, "added Williams.
The 24-year-old centre will get a chance to debut in the next game against Zadar, which is scheduled for March 4 in Podgorica.
17 February 2019 - The reconstruction of the indoor swimming pool "Nikša Bućin" in Kotor has reached its final phase. Minister of Sports and Youth Nikola Janović said that the Kotor pool is a symbol of Montenegrin water polo and swimming sports, and that it has huge importance for the Montenegrin sport, as well as for children and youth throughout the Bay of Kotor.
"I am one of those people who started their first career adventure in this very pool. That's why I know its significance and its potential. Part of the policies of the Government and the Ministry of Sports and Youth relate to the establishment of sports infrastructure in every city, in every place where it is possible to do so. By reconstructing this pool, water polo returns to Kotor," said Minister Janović.
He added that the sports facilities will be reconstructed or built throughout Montenegro and that the Ministry will continue with precise policies and measures from now on - that the sport comes to life in every Montenegrin quarter, in every settlement.
The director of the Public Works Directorate, Rešad Nuhodžić, said that the Government provided all the money needed for the next stages of the reconstruction of this pool and that the Public Works Directorate will ensure that the works will be completed within eight months, as foreseen by the planned period of development.
"As we promised during the conclusion of the contract on the start of the second phase of the reconstruction of the pool in Kotor, today Minister Janović and I visited the construction site and officially held the final meetings with both the contractor and supervision unit. Now it is time for us to finish the reconstruction in the deadlines agreed upon, which is until the end of this year, and make this pool operational," said the director of the Public Works Directorate.
He added that it is particularly satisfying that this is an object that, in addition to water polo players, can be used by the citizens of Kotor, which is an additional motive for completing the works in time and in full.
"What I will particularly insist from the position of Director of the Public Works Directorate is that the works are completed within the agreed time and that their quality will be in accordance with the highest standards," said the Director of Public Works.
February 16, 2019 - He knows they’re building mementos in his hometown, he embraces the fact he’s the first NBA All-Star from his country and he appreciates the love.
In short, Nikola Vučević sounds elated to represent Montenegro in the 2019 NBA All-Star game.
“It’s an amazing feeling to be the first player from Montenegro ever to do it,” said Vučević. “I’ve had a lot of people from back home reach out to me, and text me to let me know how proud they are. Actually, the city I’m from put a billboard with my picture on [it]. Things like that make this even more special.”
Amidst the train of events and engagements, Vučević was found sitting on a bench coaching international youth basketball players at the NBA’s ‘Basketball Without Borders’ camp Friday in Charlotte.
Vučević, at times, could be seen rooted on sidelines next to Montenegro’s own, 17-year-old Jovan Kljajic.
“It’s funny, I saw [Kliajic] over the summer when he did the BWB in Europe, and now he’s here,” Vučević said. “He actually reached out to me a couple of days ago telling me he was going to be here. It’s fun to see him, and I try to give him some advice when I see different stuff.”
Kliajic is unavailable for comment until after camp.
For ‘Vooch’ as he is affectionately called here in the states, coaching international players at the camp is a way to give back to over 60 teens from more than 30 countries who are following in his path.
Vučević was joined by fellow 2019 NBA All-Star Nikola Jokić (Denver Nuggets; Serbia), 2018s No. 1 pick Deandre Ayton (Phoenix Suns; Bahamas), and Bogdan Bogdanović (Sacramento Kings; Serbia) to coach the top high school age talent from Africa, the Americas, Asia, and Europe.
This year marks a changing of the guard, in some respect, as international NBA icon and 14-time All-Star Dirk Nowitzki makes his final appearance in the game.
Most understand Nowitzki is a big reason why this generation of international players is reaching back to guide today’s international youth.
Nowitzki seems content with the future of international players in the NBA under the charge Vučević and others.
“He does everything the right way, and I'm a big fan of his game,” Nowitzki said.
The 40-year-old Nowitzki reflected on what it was like for him to return Würzburg, Germany, after his first All-Star selection, and compared it to what Vučević is probably feeling right now.
“It's awesome. Friends, family, and fans are excited about your success,” Nowitzki said. “The people who have gone through the tough times - the good times - they’re excited for you. The country is excited for you, and this should be a fun time for him.
After all the events that require his presence, Vučević will lace it up Saturday to compete in the Taco Bell Skills Challenge at 8 p.m. EST, and then he’ll don a team Giannis jersey for the 67th NBA All-Star Game Sunday at 8 p.m. EST.
“I’m proud to represent my countrymen here,” Vučević said. “It’s a huge honor, and I’m going to do my best to represent them in the right way.”
Text by Christopher Cadeau
15 February 2019 - The 15th Open Swimming Championship of Montenegro, a sporting event organised within the official program of the 50th Mimosa Festival will be opened at the Simo Milošević Institute in Igalo on February 16, followed by the 24th International Swimming Meeting "Montenegro Mimosa Cup". This year's swimming meeting will gather over 400 competitors from all countries which were a part of the former Yugoslavia, as well as from Italy, Hungary, and Russia.
The delegates' meeting and cocktail gathering at the Institute, which will be held on February 15, will precede the competition, organized by Herceg Novi Municipality and Public Culture Institution Herceg Fest.
The opening of the 24th International Swimming Meeting is scheduled for February 16 at 4:45 pm, with the City Music and the performance of the city majorettes, while the first competitors will enter the swimming pool already at 8:30 am, when the first debrief is scheduled.
The first part of the competition will start at 9 am, which is a 50 metres women swimming race. The second part begins with the competitors’ preparations at 3:30 pm, after which a 100 metres swimming race of mixed style swimming for men will start at 5 pm.
The third phase of the program will begin on Sunday. From 8 am to 8:45 am the competitors will warm up. The 100 metres mixed style swimming race for women will start at 9 am.
Last year's winner was Swimming Club Olimpija from Ljubljana.
The event is supported by the Government of Montenegro, Water polo and Swimming Federation, Olympic Committee and numerous sponsors.
Source: Radio Jadran
In the month of three defeats in four games (two in the European and one in the ABA league), Buducnost Voli basketball players have the chance to qualify for the first trophy of the season.
They are the hosts of the final tournament of the Cup of Montenegro, and will play against the main competitor, Mornar, in the semi-finals.
"The Cup is such a competition that always carries more uncertainty than any other competition, simply because it is to be or not to be in one game. Our commitment as a club and me as a coach is to confirm that we are, at this moment, the best club in Montenegro, which has to be confirmed on the court as well. We need to play well and appropriate to such a competition, to give our best to get to the trophy," coach Jasmin Repesa said. In addition to playing at home, in Buducnost’s favor is their quality. Since only three foreigners can play, Repesa will have to decide by Friday whom he will send to the stands out of the Americans Norris Cole, Earl and Coty Clarke, James Bel, the Frenchman Edwin Jackson and Nemanja Gordic (Bosnia and Herzegovina).
If there are no unexpected events, the Croatian expert will not be able to count on Georgian Goga Bitadze, who hurt his ankle against Partizan. Repesa, therefore, has at his disposal a number of high-quality Montenegrin players, Suad and Sead Sehovic, Filip Barovic, Petar Popovic, Danilo Nikolic.
"Bitadze's injury is such that it will be difficult for him to play the Cup. I think it would be inappropriate to force it because of the great obligations that are waiting for us later. However, I am still waiting for official confirmation regarding his current state of fitness, recovery length and all that that can affect such an injury. In the last period, we had a lot of problems with the flu, many players missed one or two days of training, and the drop in the quality was visible. A stabilization program is in progress, hopefully, by Friday we will succeed to put each player in their places," added Repesa.
Specialized basketball website Sportando yesterday sent Blagota Sekulic to Buducnost Voli, but the Montenegrin representative rejected that option. Now, supposedly, as Sportando reports, the wish of the team from Podgorica is Milko Bjelica, the wing center, but the final word still needs to be given.
The final deadline for the registration is Friday. "As for new players, we have not signed a contract at this point, and I think the timing is too short for a player to get in the game system and adjust to playing in the Cup, no matter who he is," concluded Repesa. The match Buducnost - Mornar is on Friday night at 8 p.m. Lovcen and Sutjeska will play at 5 p.m. The final in "Moraca" is scheduled on Saturday at 7 p.m.
Text by Sasa Joncic, on February 13th 2019, read more at Vijesti
February 9, 2019 - The traditional regatta of the Mimosa Cup gathered today the young competitors of all active Montenegrin sailing clubs for the 45th time. The race in the waters of the Herceg Novi Bay is a traditional sports event within the program of the Mimosa Festival.
07 February 2019 - Thanks to Stefan Marković’s three-pointer in the final minute, and Jordan Mickey’s incredible performance, Khimki Moscow Region escaped from Podgorica with a tight win, after defeating Budućnost VOLI, 90-98. Khimki currently sits in the 12th spot with a 9-13 record and is still in the fight for a playoff spot.
With three minutes remaining, the game was all tied at 80. Norris Cole scored a crucial three-pointer, and Goga Bitadze put up four points to put the hosts up by two points (87-85). Jordan Mickey, on the other hand, also made huge free-throws down the stretch and tied the game yet again at 87 with a minute remaining. With 48 seconds on the clock, Marković came up big and knocked down the most important shot of the contest (88-90). Mickey scored yet another basket, and since that point, the game was over.
Mickey had a phenomenal game for the visiting team. He was one-point shy of his career high, as he put up 25 points (7/9 2FG) and four rebounds. Besides, he also came up big in the final minutes of regulation. Jenkins added 17 points.
For Jasmin Repeša’s squad, former NBA champion, Cole, finished with a double-double of 20 points and 11 assists, while 19-year old prodigy, Bitadze, put up 17 points and seven rebounds.
Khimki’s head coach, Rimas Kurtinaitis, focused on the limited turnovers his team had on Thursday night: “First, I am happy that we had full control for 40 minutes. OK, for the first two quarters it was so-so. But especially the end, in the fourth quarter, it was really good for us, we played smart. One of the things we did better than other games was we made just seven turnovers. Usually, we have an average of 14, so this improvement helped us to win. [Shved] is coming in a couple of weeks, but for the moment we aren’t thinking that far. We have to think about just the next game and play all of them to win. That’s it. With that, maybe playoffs will come.”
The game was competitive in the first half, as both teams were playing great basketball, showcasing their offense. After 20′, the hosts had a one-point lead (46-45) in what was a high-scoring half. Bitadze and Charles Jenkins were leading the way for the two teams. Thanks to Jenkins’ offensive crescendo in the final minutes of the third period, Khimki went up ahead and had a three-point advantage to start the fourth-quarter (65-58).
Buducnost Voli wants their fourth consecutive victory of the European League at home, as said by the coach Jasmin Repesa before the upcoming duel with Khimki.
The team from the Moscow region comes to Podgorica for the 22nd round of the European League.
The match at Moraca Sports Center will take place at 7 pm.
"This is another opportunity for us to show ourselves on the biggest basketball scene in Europe, we are fighting against a team that is very good lately, and we want to continue with good games and wins at home. We will do our best to achieve a new triumph," said Repeša.
Buducnost has won all the matches in Podgorica since the arrival of the Croatian coach - in the European League against Darüşşafaka, Real Madrid and Gran Canaria, and in the ABA League against Igokea, Cedevita and Mornar.
The team from Podgorica has six wins in the European League - two less than the team from the Moscow region.
"The European matches are always heavy, although it is easier for us when we play at home, given that we spend a lot of time on the road," said the Frenchman Edwin Jackson.
"Khimki has played better since they changed their coach, we are close in the table and the match will be hard, just like it was against Darüşşafaka, or Gran Canaria," added Jekson. Khimki, who will be in Podgorica without their best player, Alexey Shved, won in the last round against Žalgiris at home.
Text by Danilo Mitrovic, on February 6th 2019, read more at Vijesti
06 February 2019 - Jordi Bertomeu, a Spanish professional basketball administrator and the President, Chairman, and CEO of the Euroleague Basketball Company will come to Podgorica on Thursday, February 7, as a guest of the Basketball Club Budućnost Voli, announced the club’s management.
"The first man of Euroleague, Jordi Bertomeu, will visit the club premises where he will meet with the president of Basketball Club Budućnost Voli. Bertomeu will also attend the duel of the 22nd round of Euroleague, in which our team is waiting for the Khimki basketball club from the Moscow Region," the statement said.
As explained on the official website of the Euroleague, Budućnost is on a three-game home-court winning streak and has been able to down teams like CSKA Moscow and Real Madrid in the Montenegrin capital. Norris Cole (18.7 ppg., 4.3 apg.) and Goga Bitadze (12.6 ppg., 6.6 rpg., 3 bpg.) have been critical for their team's improvement. Khimki comes off a brilliant come-from-behind home win against Zalgiris Kaunas and looks for its first road win since early January. Jordan Mickey (13.9 ppg., 5.2 rpg.) is currently its main pillar, along with Tony Crocker (9.3 ppg.) and Malcolm Thomas (7 pp., 4.3 rpg.).
Khimki defeated Budućnost 85-69 at home on November 21, 2018. One week before breaking his finger, Alexey Shved led the winners with 22 points, seven rebounds, and seven assists. Jordan Mickey added 18 points and seven assists for Khimki, which led 45-30 at halftime and kept a safe margin all the way. Earl Clark led Budućnost with 19 points.
"We expect victory, for sure. I hope we have a good defensive game, to drop them down to around 70 points, and with a good attack, the defence will be crucial, "said Edwin Jackson for News Agency CdM.
The match will take place on February 7, at 7 pm at Morača Sports Centre.
Awards for the best sportsmen and sports workers of the Bijelo Polje municipality were presented in the hotel "Franca". The best athletes prize for 2018 was given to volleyball player Ljubomir Popović and was awarded by the President of the Municipality Petar Smolovic.
The best club is OK Jedinstvo, winner of the Montenegrin Cup and Montenegrin Championship and Champion League participant, coach Osman Erović (AK Jedinstvo and Montenegrin national team selector).
Risto Drobnjak was chosen for the most promising sportsman, while the best sports worker is Slobodan Šebek, sports director of OK Jedinstvo.
The Association of Sports Journalists from Bijelo Polje and the Public Institution Center for Sports and Recreation have chosen several young athletes who, with the achieved results in the last year, drew attention to themselves.
These are basketball players Vasilije Vučinić, handball player Nikola Jelić, athletes Boris Vujošević and Edin Erović, footballer Rijad Džafić, handball player Ema Kolić, judo player Kristina Milićević, boxers Zdravko Vlaović and Darko Mrdović. Recognition in this category was also given to a new member of the Paralympic Montenegrin National Team Adnan Kujovic. Posthumously, Nebojsa Milošević, a basketball player who played in Jedinstvo, and later a prominent player of a large number of clubs and basketball manager, was awarded for the merit of contributing to the development of the sport in Bijelo Polje.
On behalf of the Sports Journalists Association, numerous guests were greeted by the president of that association Milovan Novović.
Athletes did not attend the awards ceremony.
President Smolovic said that there are about 2500 athletes in Bijelo Polje and pointed out that local Self-government will help the development of sports.
Text by Jadranka Cetkovic, on February 5th 2019, read more at Vijesti