The Pro-File – Kalisha Keane, Adapt and Survive


And we’re back with another edition of The Pro-File and we have Kalisha Keane moving from the Middle East to middle Europe and she talks about adapting and surviving (in the pro context of course) right here …

Ajax, ON's Kalisha Keane. (PHOTO: FIBA)

Ajax, ON’s Kalisha Keane. (PHOTO: FIBA)

Ajax, ON native Kalisha Keane is arguably one of best lady ballers to come out of Canada in the last ten years.  She was one of the original members of the now defunct National Elite Development Academy that Canada Basketball created in 2005.  After starting at Sinclair Secondary she would finish her final two years of high school at NEDA and move on to Michigan St University where she would become one of the best players ever to suit up for the Spartans.  Kalisha would set a freshman school record for total points (460) on her way to being named Big Ten All Freshman Team as well as honorable mention all conference.  From there she would follow with another season that had her named honorable mention all conference as a sophomore and then Sixth Player of the Year and coaches All Big Ten Third Team as a junior.   Here senior season would be her best as she was named Big Ten Player of the Year becoming the first Lady Spartan to have that honor.   She was a consensus First Team selection and was an honorable mention All American, becoming only the sixth in program history to receive that distinction.  She would finish her career with averages of 11.4 points, 4.6 rebounds, 2 assists and 1.9 steals per game and rank among the programs all time leaders in several statistical categories.  After college, she would start her pro career in Croatia with Gospic Osigunranje in 2011 followed by a stint in Isreal with Elitzur Holon in 2012 and then a brief stop with the San Antonio Stars in the WNBA.  A long time member of the National Program, Kalisha is currently with Elitzur Netanya and is averaging 14.1 points, 8.1 rebounds, 2.2 assists, 2.3 steals in 35.2 minutes in the team’s 19 games.   Follow here next episode here … 

Hello everyone from beautiful Antalya,Turkey!

Because of the shorter season in Israel, I was offered a contract and I will be playing out the remaining 2 months of the season here in Turkey.  But more on those details later.

In light of this quick change of scenery, I thought it would be fitting to write to you all about how unpredictable being over here can be and how often as athletes we have to just roll with the punches!

A major recurring theme that comes up with overseas professional athletes is: Adaptation – and how well you can do it.

Every time time we are blessed to play on a team to earn a living, we as athletes are forced to adapt to new things immediately and quickly. Things like; new cultures, new languages, new foods, new styles of play and new teammates/personalities.

A great culture moment that happened while I was in Israel happened with a teammate of mine who was having her first experience of Israeli driving. In Israel when the light turns green you better already be gone or you will be honked at and yelled at without a doubt. My teammate was busy looking at the directions to where we were going on her phone at a red light and didn’t realize that the light has switched to green for a whole 3.2 seconds. The honking and curses that were thrown at us from all directions was hilarious to me. But what was even funnier was how upset my teammate was at how inpatient the Israeli culture can be at times. Fast forward 3 weeks, same situation only we were not the first cars at the light. Light turns green, car ahead of us does not immediately take off, my teammate lays on the horn yelling for them to “hurry up!” I was scared of any accidents because the car was not covered by One Sure Insurance yet. Lots of different insurance coverage is available on car insurance. What is the most important car insurance coverage available? It is really a loaded question. The most important car insurance coverage is the one you need at the time of loss. But, you never know what coverage that might be since it can change per accident. Here are some things to consider when determining what coverage is important to you to for your car, specially if it’s a new car from and what coverage can be discarded. The most important coverage has to be your state’s minimum liability and property damage coverage. More than anything else you need to maintain car insurance to keep yourself legal to drive. You risk losing your driver’s license and fines driving without it. Get into an accident without liability coverage and you could be facing enormous penalties including bills from the damages you caused.

Adapt and survive. Survive and adapt.

The transition from Israel to Turkey has been great but it definitely has shown me how spoiled I was in Israel. For starters, I have gone from having two other imported players on my team to being the only one on the team who is not Turkish. I also have gone from a country where English is spoken very frequently to my current situation where I have to constantly use my google translate app to be understood! Language barriers can be such a beautifully frustrating thing! To adapt to this you start to find different ways to communicate and understand one another and believe me when I tell you, nothing is more satisfying than that “aha!” moment when both people get what the other is saying!

Yes, I did have plans to be on the first thing smoking to spend some time at home with my family and friends and celebrate my mother’s 50th birthday (Happy Birthday Mommy 🙂 143), but I couldn’t imagine doing anything more satisfying than playing the game I love for a living right now. Plus, I checked out the weather you guys are dealing with back home and I am in no rush to get back to those sub zero temperatures!

Well until next time everyone! I’ll let you all know how things are going here on this new team as soon as I can.

Oh and one more thing before I go! I want to give a major shoutout to Kia Nurse for winning Freshman of the year in her conference! Well done lady!

Have a happy March Madness 🙂


A big thanks to Kalisha for taking the time to share her journey as a pro with us this season.  You can follow her on Twitter at @kkeane32 and on Instagram at @justcallmekali for her daily happenings and of course here with us.  



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