Filip Petrusev: I was one of the “collateral damages” of NBA trades

2024-02-25T11:43:12+00:00 2024-02-25T11:43:12+00:00.

Antonis Stroggylakis

25/Feb/24 11:43

Filip Petrusev discussed his tough time in the NBA, where he found himself getting traded twice and lacking the time to prove his worth.

By Eurohoops team /

Olympiacos Piraeus big man Filip Petrusev described himself as “collateral damage” in the NBA trade game that led him out of the Philadelphia 76ers before his eventual return to the EuroLeague.

“Literally, I had nothing to do with it, it was some numbers and some other things around the contract that got me traded,” Petrusev said to Mozzart Sport. “I received calls from the coach later, at a time when I didn’t know I was going to be traded. That’s how it is in the NBA when superstars move from team to team, there is a lot of collateral damage if you can say that, and I was one of them.”

Petrusev was moved by the Sixers to the Los Angeles Clippers as a part of the James Harden deal. He was then sent to the Sacramento Kings that waived him after just two appearances.

“In the NBA, when in the middle of the season you move as a young and unproven player to another team, it is very difficult to impose yourself. During the season, there are no trainings and it’s really inconvenient, if that team is full and ready, as in my case it was in Sacramento, you don’t have time to prove yourself and find a place. Then they send you to the Development League and then everything was quite different for me, who played in the Euroleague and had success in it. It’s hard to navigate all that, especially the next few weeks or a month after the trade.”

Shortly after his release by the Kings, Petrusev signed a multiyear deal with Olympiacos to come back to EuroLeague. It took the Serbian player some time to adjust but when that happened he became a steady contributor to the Reds, helping his team get some important wins.

Most recently, Petrusev had 10 points in the Greek Cup Final victory of Olympiacos over archrival Panathinaikos AKTOR.

“When I started playing, even he [Olympiacos coach Giorgos Bartzokas] didn’t know exactly what to expect from me, because it was already known who was doing what in the team,” Petrusev mentioned. “Olympiakos was not in great shape at that moment, they won some games, lost some, but it was known what they needed and what they lacked. That’s where I found my place, even more so in the ‘four’ position. Barcokas, again, uses a lot of players in the rotation, in the first five it is already known who does what, in the second there were a lot of doubts. I jumped into that space and together with a few other players we understood what was required and expected. Everything came by itself, I imposed myself with personal qualities with which I can help”.