Basketball Federation of Serbia has for the fourth time officially pronounced the best man and
woman basketball player of the year. In the ceremonial atmosphere at the New Year’s and
Christmas cocktail organized by the Basketball Federation of Serbia at the Crowne Plaza hotel
the best man and woman player of Serbia in 2018 were awarded.
Like in the previous years, in order to have the most possible objective election, Basketball
Federation of Serbia trusted voting to sport journalists of all eminent Serbian media who monitor
basketball and activities in the Federation.
According to the jury, consisting of daily papers’ sport desks, television stations with national
frequency, radio stations with national frequency, as well as the most eminent internet portals
that monitors the activity in basketball and are specialized in basketball broadcasts, the best in
2018 were Aleksandra Crvendakic and Nikola Jokic!
NBA player of Denver triumphed with 28 votes, last year’s winner of this award Bogdan
Bogdanovic won three, and Miroslav Raduljica and Vasilije Micic won two votes.
Sopron basketball player, who won Hungarian League and Cup last year, played Euroleague
finals and was drafted in WNBA, won 22 votes, ahead of Sonja Petrovic with nine votes, Ivana
Race with three and last year’s winner Jelena Milovanovic who won one vote.
Today’s gathering had additional significance. Along with the announcement of the winners, the
contract between Raiffeisen Bank and Basketball Federation of Serbian was signed. Predrag
Danilovic, the President of Basketball Federation of Serbia and Zoran Petrovic, the President of
Raiffeisen bank Executive Board put their signatures and announced this new cooperation, and
Danilovic presented Petrovic with a women’s national team of Serbia game shirt with
Raiffeisen bank advertisement, that will in the future be on the backs of our best women
basketball players.
After that numerous guests were greeted by the President of Basketball Federation of Serbia,
Predrag Danilovic.

– I would like to thank to Raiffeisen bank and it’s director Zoarn Petrovic as they will be
with us next four years and support us in our achievement of the best possible results.
Thus the Raiffeisen remained part of the our successful sponsor team. Last year we
renewed many years’ contracts with Roda Company and Triglav Insurance, and we are
in the process of signing a new contract on the continuing cooperation with company
Marbo, while our successful team has been recently enlarged by Heineken company
with their well-known brand Lasko. We still have NIS, Nektar, Ford, Blic and VIP
Physical with us. On this occasion I thank to all our business partners for their great
support, because without them it would be very difficult for us to make such good results
and win medals. A year that is behind us was another very successful year for Serbian
basketball. Even though we did not have big senior competitions , basketball players are
just one step to qualify for the World Cup in China next summer, U18 team has become
European Champion, and U20 girls are Vice Champions of Europe. Senior 3×3 national
team of Serbia has for the fourth time become the champion of the world, for the first
time even the champion of Europe, and U18 team is vice champion of Europe. Basketball
Federation of Serbia has successfully responded to big challenges, and it has, with all
compliments from FIBA, organized several games within WorldCup qualifiers, as well
as U16 European Championship in Novi Sad this summer. In December we had three
big events in one day. We have discovered the monument to the founders of the
basketball in our region, the draw for FIBA Women’s EuroBasket held in the city
Assembly and we had Solemn Academy. We have celebrated 70 year’s anniversary of our
Federation and 95 years of basketball in Serbia in our National Theatre.
The President of the Federation spoke about the events in 2019, too.
– In 2019 we have to organize Men’s and Women’s Cup, there are qualifiers for WorldCup
in Chine in February and what is the most demanding –organization of the big event –
Women’s EuroBasket organization in Nis, Zrenjanin and Belgrade. We are thankful to
Government of Serbia, Ministry of Youth and Sport and Minister Udovicic, Government
of Vojvodina and the city of Novi Sad, Belgrade , Zrenjanin and Nis, Olympic
Committee of Serbia, for their enormous help they give us. With New Year’s and
Christmas wishes, I wish we will have the opportunity to award large number of
successful individuals and teams next year in this same place.
Zoran Petrovic, the President of Raiffeisen bank Executive Board, was pleased that his bank has
become business partner of the Basketball Federation of Serbia.
– I have great pleasure to be here today, when we use this opportunity to celebrate the
beginning of a new cooperation between Raiffeisen bank and Basketball Federation of
Serbia. I am proud to announce that next four years Raiffeisen bank will be official
sponsor of Basketball Federation of Serbia , both Women’s and Men’s national teams.
Our bank has for 18 years, that is how long it operates in Serbia, supported this
community, both through humanitarian actions and help and through investments in real
values – sport and culture, as the most important among them. Remarkable results that
our basketball, not only men’s but also our women’s basketball, has been making year by
year, confirms the fact that we should invest in quality. I am glad that this has been

recognized by other companies, too, since the support to the top sport is always
important. Of course, the government support is also important, particularly for sport in
which we make exceptional results and that has celebrated us in Europe and in the world.
As a man who respect this sport, I would like to say that I particularly appreciate the
Federation management and I believe that at the forthcoming championships our men
and women basketball players, headed by their management, will continue the serial of
successes that have been made in the previous years. And why not – go one step more!
We are proud that we will be with them on their path.
This was followed by award ceremony, and Mr. Branislav Jokic, Nikola’s father, was the first
to receive it from the President of the Basketball Federation of Serbia, Predrag Danilovic. Best
Serbian basketball player’s father thanked to the present guests in the name of the family
Jokic , while Nikola addressed the guests by video message from Denver.
– I am sorry that I am not with you to receive this award personally. I have been practicing
for many years as to be pronounced the best player of Serbia, the country of basketball. I
hope that I will have even better games to justify this award. See you….- said Jokic.
Then on the stage came the best woman basketball player in 2018 Aleksandra Crvendakic and
she received her award from Predrag Danilovic.
– I am honored and pleased to receive this award. I have always considered the individual
awards as the team ones. In basketball we share beautiful and less beautiful moments. I
am thankful to all my teammates, coaches, people who have supported us, to all of you
who voted for me. And for the end I would like to thank to my family for their enormous
support and love they have for me. I wish you all the best for the forthcoming holidays
and wish you all stay with us, particularly at this very important event, Women
EuroBasket that will be held in Serbia this year – said Ms. Crvendakic.
Basketball Federation of Serbia has decided to hand special awards for previous year. The first
who received this special award was U20 Women’s basketball national team of Serbia, the team
that won silver medal at the European Championship held in Sopron. The award was received
by Katarina Tomic, U20 team manager, and she received it from Dusan Projovic, the Vice
President of Serbian Basketball Federation in charge for competitions.
– I am glad to receive this award on behalf of these girls, they have won silver medals on
the previous two European championships… I hope that third time they will also be
lucky and that this summer we will win gold.
The winner of the special award is also U18 men national team of Serbia, which has won gold in
Riga at European championship. The award was handed by Igor Rakocevic, Vice- president of
Basketball Federation of Serbia in charge for Men’s basketball, to Aleksandar Bucan, the head
coach of this team, who after being granted this award said:
– Thank you for this award. It is the result of good game on previous U18 Men European
Championship, all the merits goes to the players and coaching staff. Success as a success
means lot of words, but even more than that. We can define success as a matter in which

each of us will give maximum and we will do our best to give as much as we can in next
period.
Of course, our best basket players have been awarded, too. Senior 3×3 national team has in 2018
the world champion for the fourth time and European Champion for the first time, while U18
3×3 national team of Serbia won silver medal at the European championship in Debrecen.
Special award from Predrag Danilovic, the president of Serbian Basketball Fedeartion, was
received by Goran Vojkic, the head coach, and Danilo Lukic, the coach, on behalf of these two
national teams.
– Thank you for this award. In this pre-Olympic year, huge temptations are ahead of us as
we want to qualify at Olympic games – said Vojkic.
This voting for the best has been organized by Serbian Basketball Federation since 2015, when
the laureates were Ana Dabovic and Nemanja Bjelica. One year later the best were Sonja
Petrovic and Milos Teodosic, and in 2017 this award was granted to Jelena Milovanovic and
Bogdan Bogdanovic.