It's not a secret that the Balkans are a basketball land. Serbian players and teams are often amongst the elite in the Old Continent, and we continue to see a rise in Balkan players making it to the NBA.
Nonetheless, you could argue that Serbian basketball has never been as good as it is right now, as they become the first country to have an NBA and Euroleague MVP in the very same year.
As you may know by now, Denver Nuggets star Nikola Jokic beat Joel Embiid and Stephen Curry to capture this year's MVP, while Vasilije Micic of Turkish team Anadolu Elfes earned the honors in the European competition:
"Micic, 27, was previously named EuroLeague MVP and went on capturing the Final Four MVP award leading Anadolu Efes to the top of Europe’s premier club competition for the first time in team history. The Serbian pair, expected to compete against each other in the next NBA season, lifted their country to the unique achievement," reported Eurohoops.
It's also worth noting that the NBA has named a European MVP for the third year in a row after Giannis Antetokounmpo won the award in the past couple of years. Moreover, the Defensive Player of the Year award has also gone to Europeans, with Rudy Gobert winning a couple and Giannis taking home the other.
Foreign players continue to make their way into the NBA and being from outside of the U.S. is no longer a problem for young hoopers, as we've seen in recent drafts with Luka Doncic, Theo Maledon, Kristaps Porzingis, Frank Ntilikina, and big etcetera.
So, congratulations to Serbia for the talent they've developed recently, and let's hope they continue to shine and give us some of the best basketball players on the planet.