Predrag Lukic is a German/Serbian coach with extensive experience. He has coached most of his life in Germany for teams like TSV Quakenbrueck Dragons (Germany-2.Bundesliga) women team, ChemCats Chemnitz (Germany-DBBL) women team, evo New Basket Oberhausen (Germany-DBBL) women team, MTV Wolfenbuettel von 2012 Herzoege (Germany-ProB), and Buergerfelder TB (Germany-Regionalliga). He made the big step to Asia in 2015 joining BC Rise Sport Foshan (China, Guangdong province) and this season is an assistant for the
NANHAI (Foshan) Longlions
(China-ABL). He spoke to German Hoops about basketball in China.
Predrag thanks for talking to German Hoops Where are you at the moment an how is basketball life for you at the moment?
Thank you too. I am now in my third year in China, Foshan City. That’s a 7,5 mio Population in the Guangdong province. An absolute Basketball province and City. Here you have, 3 CBA teams (GZ Longlions, Guangdong Tigers, Szenzhen Leopards) and now the new pro team Nanhai (Foshan) LongLions ABL League.So its a nice life for a Basketballer.
You have been in China for some years now. What have you learned to appreciate the most about the basketball there and the country?
Chinese people are hard working, have discipline and want to learn. That’s especially for Sport as a Coach a big plus.
You coached the last 2 years the BC Rise Sport Foshan (Highschool Team) youth program. What kind of experience was that for you and how do you feel did you grow as a coach?
That was a great new experience for me. Before I came to China, long years ago I had training with youth teams, than to come to a different culture, to train youth is a nice feeling, many new, interesting and different things I had seen. I have enjoyed it.
You coached in the past German teams like TSV Quackenbruck, Wolfenbuettel and Buergerfelder TB. How was it different in general for you coaching young Chinese boys in comparison to young German players?
In the beginning, it was not very easy, because of the different culture, level, etc. But at least, Basketball is Basketball, everywhere.
What is the state currently of Chinese basketball. What strides has it made in the youth area and in the professional ranks in the time that you were there?
Basketball is number 1 in China. There are Many supporters. And I can see and feel, that every year its getting bigger and bigger.
You have a new coaching gig with the NANHAI (in Foshan) LONG LIONS. How did you get this job and what are you most excited about being able to do now coming from the youth area to the professional area?
Yes after two years coaching youth here, I got the offer from the club from president Mr. L.Peng. It´s nice to be able again to be in coaching staff of a pro team.
You will be competing in the up and coming ASEAN league. Ex NBA players have played here and former BBL player Chris Oliver. How has this league developed in the last years from your perspective?
I saw the finals last year (Hong Kong Eastern – Singapore), the league is very interesting with good imports and potential.
How do you see NANHAI (in Foshan) LONG LIONS doing this season? How much potential does the club have?
Our roster is made up of CBA Youth team dropouts, Imports and Young CBA players who have recently been cut (From GZ LongLions). We want to win and be competitive, but we also want to develop our players and our brand. The club goal in this first ABL Season are the Playoffs.
Do you see yourself having good input as an assistant and what will be your biggest goal from the bench in your coaching?
For sure. I am glad to be the assistant coach of this team and club, I will share my experience and help where ever it needs.
You have been some years now in China. Do you ever see yourself returning to Germany or could you see yourself staying for an extended time in China?
At moment my family and I are very happy in China. But of course, when the time comes, returning to Germany, home sweet home.
What have you missed most from Germany from the basketball side and from the culture?
Like I told you before, Basketball is Basketball everywhere in the World. But for sure, at least I missed my family, culture, friends, food, etc. But that´s it, we are professionals, that´s our life.
Thanks Predrag for the chat.