If you really know your San Antonio Spurs history then the name Victor Sanikidze should sound familiar. If not, allow me to enlighten you.
Sanikdze was acquired by the Spurs in a 2004 NBA Draft day trade with the Atlanta Hawks. He played with the Spurs' Rocky Mountain Review team but that was the closest he ever came to wearing the Spurs colors. He became synonymous with the phrase "draft and stash" among Spurs fans who feel he may never come to the NBA.
But as Sanikidze, a member of the Italian team Virtus Bologna, points out, an injury discovered after the draft hampered him from coming to the NBA sooner.
After quite a successful first season in France I was taken to NBA Draft, which was the biggest event for me. It was amazing to have achieved such success at a young age, but unfortunately after a medical check it appeared that I had an injury which I had to look after.
I came back to France and played there, but my injury became even worse and I had an operation on my knee. I then trained again and was able to continue playing. I signed a new contract with one of the Spanish basketball teams. I played there for 1 year and continued playing for the Georgian National team. Unfortunately my injury flared up again so I came back to Georgia and was cured at Tatishvili Clinic.”
And if that wasn't enough, the NBA lockout continues to put that NBA goal on hold.
"I had quite a good season this year, and I had a chance to play in the USA but NBA announced Lockout, it’s a kind of strike and until February I’ll not have a chance to play there, however I am still in contact with one of the NBA teams,” Sanikidze said.
Seems Sanikidze has been a victim of circumstance but he continues to work hard on and off the court in the hopes of one day joining the NBA.
The main point for achieving success in basketball is to work hard but talent plays a key role. No matter how hard you train, if you don’t have talent you can’t achieve success. You should have both talent and desire to train all the time. Nowadays I am really content with what I have achieved in basketball, of course there could have been better situations at times, but taking in to account my trauma and injuries I am quite content with what I have done until now.
The good news is he us still young, 25-years old, and has recovered completely from his injury so it's not out of the realm of possibility he can join the Spurs. But if Spurs fans want to see Sanikidze play and perhaps get a glimpse of what he can bring to the San Antonio, he is playing for the Georgia national team at Eurobasket 2011.
"As a member of the national team I will do my best to participate successfully in the European Championship. It’s really important for me. We feel much support from Georgians and we will try to make our country proud.”
Well let's hope that he makes it to NBA soon and become a new member of the Spurs. Hope to see us going all the way again in 2012.
if Mr. Sanikidze is better than pachulia then he deserves to play in the nba. Is the spurs mgnt to blind to pass over this guy? They are famous for "draft and stash" and maybe this guy is one of them. How unfortunate. The same fate awaits e. lorbek and r. richards? By the way, the lockout may be lifted sooner than later. Whart is the spurs plan in filling the pf/c and pg positions? Have they considered free agents k.fesenko, c. landry and r. sessions? What about stashed draftees r. richards, e. lorbek and n. deColo? Mona Lisa?
best georgian player way better than zaza pachulia just take a look on european championship even today's match georgia vs bulgaria he had pts 18 reb 9 ast 3 bs 2 7/8 ftp.s.
each quarter's time is 10m
Just in case you have no idea about Sanikidze:
He is a 6'8 215lbs SF/PF