Feb. 20, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Washington Wizards forward Jan Vesely during game against the Phoenix Suns at the US Airways Center. The Suns defeated the Wizards 104-88. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Eurobasket 2013: Jan Vesely Is Showing Improvement

Unlike some of the other players around the NBA, Jan Vesely has actively played basketball throughout the entire off season, which includes playing for the Czech Republic in Eurobasket 2013.

As one of the more notable basketball players from his native country, Vesely has gotten a  lot of pressure to live up to the NBA standards which earned him a spot in the world’s greatest basketball league. Despite his struggles in the NBA, Vesely is still seen as a leader on the Czech national team, and to everyone’s surprise, he’s certainly lived up to expectations.

Averaging 20 points and nearly 11 rebounds per game, Vesely has emerged as a star in the Eurobasket, but more importantly, he’s shown significant signs of improvement. Jan Vesely is leading the entire Eurobasket in field goals made, total rebounds and offensive rebounds. In fact, his NBA counterparts such as Jonas Valanciunas, haven’t played nearly as well as Vesely has throughout the tournament. Of course, Vesely has taken on a much bigger role than some of the other NBA players participating, but that hasn’t stopped him in shining in Slovenia.

Jan Vesely has taken advantage of some of the tools he has, which we’re certainly not used to seeing in the nation’s capital. Even though he still struggles offensively and hasn’t shot the ball well from the perimeter, Vesely’s superior athleticism has elevated him amongst the competition, which could translate into this upcoming season. At 6’11, the former sixth overall pick has shown a unique ability to run the floor like a wing player, giving John Wall another option in transition. Tomas Satoransky, who the Wizards selected in the second round in the 2012 NBA Draft, has done a great job finding Vesely, leading him to easy buckets under the basket.

For one, Vesely will probably never develop a polished enough game where he could become dependable each and every night. Unfortunately, most of Vesely’s made field goals have come from awkward looking hooks/runners which probably won’t work in the NBA. Even though he’ll inevitably struggle to score the ball, his confidence has grown exponentially and his ability to run the floor could come in handy in this upcoming season. Vesely hasn’t been nearly as hesitant as we’ve grown accustomed to seeing, especially since he’s put up more shots than nearly anybody playing in the Eurobasket. His ability to distribute the ball at his size will give the Wizards another option, especially if Nene unexpectedly misses a large chunk of games.

Vesely is often characterized as being a hard worker, so I’m definitely glad his work is paying off. Even though it’s on a much smaller scale, some of the things we’re seeing from Vesely could potentially translate into the NBA.


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