In notoriously difficult times for young players trying to play important roles in leading European clubs, Taric Biberovic seems to defy the trend. At the age of 19 he has moved to Fenerbahce to play under the watchful eye of coach Zelijko Obradovic and has recorded serious minutes in Euroleague. The next couple of years will decide whether he will be able to emulate the steps of Bogdan Bogdanovic who also honed his skills at Fener before becoming a true NBA star
How important for your career was your move to Fenerbahce?
Moving to Fenerbahce is the biggest thing that has happened in my life, I am feeling honored to be part of this organization and family. Being here is a big motive for me to grind and get better every single day.
It is difficult to escape from comparing you to Bodgan Bogdanovic, whose career tremendously developed under coach Obradovic. Was this a factor in making your decision to move to Fenerbahce?
It’s not difficult, actually I use that as motivation. The decision was easy to make, because being able to learn from the best coach in Europe for the last decade, what else could you ask for?
How challenging was it for you to adapt to coach Obradovic’s style of work?
The coaching style is interesting to me because, Obradovic pays attention to every single detail, he hates to lose so you have to be focused at all times on the small details and become more eager to learn and win. Lets say when I came here I was 17 and didn’t know much about this side of basketball, of course this has now changed.
It had to be a very big adaptation process for you to move from the Bosnian league to the demands of Euroleague. How difficult was it for you to adjust to the demands of the best league outside the NBA?
It was a big change. Being the highest level of basketball besides NBA means these are all serious players. Practicing and playing against them makes me better every day.
This season you have received some serious minutes in Euroleague. Especially against Zalgiris, Barcelona and CSKA, which I’m sure was a great experience for you. How would you assess your performances and progress so far?
It was good experience, I learned lot of stuff in those games, and saw what do I have to work on. My performance was based on helping the team in the best way possible, it didn’t matter for me what role I was playing. Just being there and playing with courage, trying to win the game.
You are a very young player in an incredibly established and talented team. How did you find your place among European superstars and how did they accept you into the team?
Besides being some of the best players in the league they are all good people and friends so it wasn’t that hard to adapt here. They use their experience and knowledge to help me develop more.
Fenerbahce has incredible perimeter players such as Nando De Colo, Kostas Sloukas, Nikola Kalinic and Gigi Datome to mention a few. How has playing and training with such players accelerated your progress?
They are all big names in European basketball, each one of the them Is very experienced and smart. So for example, from Kostas and Nando I can watch their pick & roll game, and to understand how they read the game. From Nikola I can see the fight and tricks how to beat the opponent and from Gigi as an individual, I can develop my postgame. So I can use their talent and skills to learn from and help myself progress.
This season was interrupted in very strange circumstances. When things return back to normality how do you see your future development? Does the NBA feature in your long term plans?
It does, NBA is the dream. I’m not going to lie. It helps me to work harder every day. Right now I’m at the right place and focused on what’s happening here. My mind and passion are in Fenerbahce but when the day comes II’ll be ready.