Nik Stauskas is one of those basketball players that after spending a few years in the NBA, decide to drastically change his career and pursue a career overseas. The former 8th pick was selected by the Sacramento Kings but they traded him after one season and ever since then he changed several NBA teams before joining Euroleague team Kiroblet Baskonia.
Stauskas admitted he didn't know what to expect when it comes to playing in Europe but after a few months he feels at home. He already recognized the difference in the way basketball is played in Europe and the NBA and in a recent interview for FOX Tel Aviv he explained what is the first thing he noticed as the main difference.
The games here are very competitive” I feel the defense here is a lot better. The guys really pressure the ball, they pick up the full-court press. There’s not as much space in the offense to work with. The defense is the biggest difference”.
Apart from defense, Stauskas also thinks the offense is in a lot of ways different than the one in the NBA. According to Stauskas, the ball movement in Europe is way better and guards themselves are more active on the court in comparison to the NBA where they are mostly standing at certain positions to space up the floor.
“Teams move the ball very well” he mentioned on offensive play in Europe, The guards are consistently running off screens. In the NBA, the shooters often space the floor. Huge difference.”
Stauskas is not the first player that made such a comparison between the NBA and the Euroleague. Luka Doncic also believes it's easier to score in NBA simply because the court is smaller, players put more emphasis on defense and the system that is predominantly nurtured is more team-oriented than in the NBA.