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Bogdanovic: NBA adjustment not that easy

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- It was late in the third quarter Saturday night, and Brooklyn Nets shooting guard Bojan Bogdanovic was wide-open from beyond the arc, not a Detroit Piston near him.

It was a 3-point shot from the right wing that Bogdanovic made regularly throughout his career in Europe.

But the 25-year-old "rookie" -- at least by NBA standards -- did not make it.

And on the next possession, he threw a bad pass, enabling the Pistons to start their comeback before swingman "Joe Jesus" Johnson bailed out Brooklyn.

Through the first two games of what is a very, very young season, Bogdanovic has struggled, posting 4.5 points on 30.8 percent shooting in 25.5 minutes. He is 1-for-6 from 3-point range, and the Nets are giving up 129 points per 100 possessions defensively with the Croatian on the court.

"I thought my adjustment [was] gonna be easy, but it's not as easy as I [expected]," Bogdanovic said after Sunday's practice.

"I'm happy to have minutes to play, to be on the court, but I know that I have to be much more aggressive and start to play better."

Aggressive. The word has been thrown around what feels like a million times when it comes to Bogdanovic.

He came over with massively high expectations from both outside and inside the organization. But it's always a process -- to use a favorite word of former coach Jason Kidd -- with prospects who come from overseas.

So many adjustments must be made. It's a different game on foreign soil in a foreign culture.

"I just told him keep playing, being aggressive and just play your game," Nets coach Lionel Hollins said when he pulled Bogdanovic early on Saturday night. "You're missing shots, so what? Next time you have a wide-open shot, take it. When you drive, go drive to score, go drive to make a play. It's just basketball. I want him to stay aggressive and stay confident."

Imagine standing on the court with four All-Stars: Deron Williams, Joe Johnson, Kevin Garnett and, starting Monday night, Brook Lopez.

Then factor in all of the above.

Should he shoot? Should he pass? It can probably get pretty overwhelming.

"He helps me a lot, especially in the practice, [telling] me to be more aggressive," Bogdanovic said of Hollins. "When he took me out, he told me I have to be much more aggressive. That's the reason why he took me out, so the second half I was trying to be more aggressive, but I didn't score on those shots that I had."

Bogdanovic continues to say that the toughest parts are his adjustment to the 3-point line being farther back and playing a lot of one-on-one defense, as opposed to the many zones they typically play in Europe.

"Everybody is trying to help me and give me confidence," Bogdanovic said. "They've been telling me I'm a good player and I have to play the same way I did in Europe, because I look shy on the court, so I have to be more aggressive. ... The best thing for me is that tomorrow is a new day, so I hope that tomorrow is gonna be better."