Doug Plumb is a former CIS All-Canadian that suited up in his final year for the UBC Thunderbirds last season. Plumb’s CIS career ended on a stretcher, where he suffered a concussion at the national championships in Ottawa. Naturally, it would not be the last time that he would play high level basketball. Doug Plumb is currently playing his first professional season in Hungary, where he will check in periodically. Those that have followed along would know this is not his first NPH appearance, as he was our first CIS diary holder.
Editor’s Note: We don’t understand everything Doug is saying all the time, but we love him anyways; he has a language of his own.
After nine years of college eligibility, fifteen thousand offside tweets and much the same as that creepy dude liking your girlfriends pictures on Instagram…I won’t go away…I’M BACCKKKKKK. In the words of the every so classy Miley Cyrus, “I can’t stop, I won’t stop”.
When T [Tariq Sbiet] asked me if I was interested in doing another blog this year to give you guys a look at what life is like as a ‘Professional basketball player’ over the pond, I was all over it. I had a great time doing the blog last year and everyone who knows me, knows I love to talk…especially when there is no one on the other end telling me I am wrong. If you love doing blogs as well, why not look here at outreachkings.com to be familiar with the latest marketing tool that boost ROI.
So, for better or worse, here we go.
Round 2: ding ding.
As I sit here, its a cold and rainy Sunday night in Zalaegerszeg, Hungary. Z-town, as we call it, is a ‘city’ of 60 thousand people. When I say ‘city’ I mean city as in the same way that I say Pitt Meadows (the swamp) is the greatest place on earth/ the center of the universe…it simply is not true.
After last season I had no idea how I would go about landing a job over here but like every other basketball player who is scared of the transition to real life I was dead-set on the idea of, ‘oh when I’m done I’ll play overseas.”
Little did I know just how difficult it is to not only get a contract, but to keep a contract.
To give you an idea of what I’m talking about, a few of you might remember a guy by the name of Durrell Summers (started at Michigan St. and took them to the final four)…well he has been cut from two teams here in Hungary because he did not meet ‘expectations’. The margin for error here as an import is razor thin. Two bad games and you could be back at home on your couch…no matter if your contract is guaranteed or not, it’s that competitive.
Luckily for me Spencer Mckay, who is the new UBC assistant and a kick ass dude, went to work for me and negotiated a contract with the club I play for. The name of the club is Zalakermámia ZTE KK (http://www.ztekosar.hu/) and Spencer actually used to play for the club in his second year playing professionally.
What I’ve learned is it’s 100% not what you know, but who you know. There are so many guys back home that could absolutely murk Europe but just don’t know how to play the game outside of the game. Politics, hate it or love it, are a part of the game from grade school to the pros.
The club is in the first Division in Hungary and as it sits right now we are 4-4. We have beat some team we weren’t expected to and lost to some we should have beaten. It’s quite the learning curve but I feel like slowly but surely I’m getting a grasp for the european game.
From the get-go here I’ve been flying by the seat of my pants. Frankly…I have no idea what’s going on. The language barrier makes it next to impossible to communicate all the details of not only basketball but life in general. When they tell me to play, I play.
I got here September 1, and I had my first preseason game on the 3rd. How it works in Hungary is every import has a ‘trial period’, which is essentially a tryout to cover the clubs ass and make sure that the dude they saw on film hasn’t been screwing the pooch for the past four months and looks like the Michelin man.
Every day you are on pins and needles.
It’s a nine hour time difference here so getting off the plane and having to not only practice right away but play games was tough. Naturally, in my first game I busted open a new scar on the same eyebrow I exploded at nationals last year and had to get eight stitches. I survived the first month and my tryout…talk about relief, I could not work a real job yet.
We started 4-1 and everything was golden…then my achilles started to bug me. Initially, I just sucked it up and played. One thing about playing for Kev at UBC [Coach Kevin Hanson] that you learn quick time is that if you are injured you can quickly lose your spot if someone outplays you and no way in hell I was down with that. So I played anyways. Bad idea. As we speak I’m rocking DAS BOOT and have been living in rehab. Luckily for me, the team has been very transparent about their plans and support of me through the injury so my mind can rest easy. This is rare in Europe.
I’m currently doing everything and anything I can to get back on the court but the achilles is a royal pain and has a mind of its own when it comes to healing. (Insert reference about how much of a BOSS the mamba is for coming back from a ruptured achilles in 7 months. FEAR HIM).
The doc estimates I’m 2-3 weeks away from game action which is killing me and my ADHD. Sitting still is the hardest thing for me to do…ask my seventh grade teacher, detention for days.
Outside of basketball life is good. It still feels weird to me to get paid to play. When I wake up and my wire transfer is put into my account on the 15th of every month I’m like ‘wait..what? You mean you actually pay me to offensive foul, shoot suspect fadeaways and pump biceps?!’ http://instagram.com/p/g0GG9UNYLV/
I miss home, no doubt. Vancouver is the absolute business but what I’ve realized is that right when I think I’m missing out on something…you really aren’t. I’ll be able to have adult beverages, sit around and talk junk with the boys for the rest of my life.
This window of my life will be over before I know it and I would be remiss if I didn’t soak it all in. It doesn’t hurt that @REALhotGARBAGE and @tnorr are coming to visit and we are doing #DaCRAWLeuroEdition in a month tho…
Life here is very different, eastern Europe is another world and there are moments where I get frustrated but the people here LOVE hoops.
Our fans are too legit to quit. I’m talking these dudes get the club fined by the league because they go too hard. LOLLLL #YoMOMMA.
Anyways, I feel like I should wrap it up because it would be bad if a blog post was longer than any University paper I handed in.
Thanks for reading my jargon once again everyone…and this is the part where I shamelessly promote my twitter and Instagram…@dougplumb #DoITTTTT
Until next time, fear the mamba, go T-birds and twerk twerk miley miley miley.