Kazembe Abif (201-F-92, college: Drexel) has played in multiple countries in his career so far, including Germany, Denmark and Finland and has established himself as a valuable contributor in today's fast paced game, where Power Forwards just not only operate under the basket, but also space the floor with a good outside game. In 36 games in the Korisliiga last season Abif averaged 9.2ppg, 4.4rpg and shot FGP: 54.6%, 3PT: 41.7%, FT: 70.8%.
Kazembe is currently in New Jersey, preparing his body for his potential next chapter during this crazy Corona times:
Q: Kazembe, tell us a little bit about last season in Finland with the Helsinki Seagulls.
A: My last season is Finland went really well. My team finished at the top of the standings and were able to go undefeated at home during the whole season (18-0). We also won the Finnish Cup, the first championship in team history so that was really exciting. It was also my first time as a champion at the professional level which is always my goal at the start of every season.
Q: The past months have been very different in terms of preparation and concentration for a profesional athlet. How do you work out in this changing environment?
A: Staying in shape has been a lot easier the past few month compared to the early spring when the Corona virus first broke out. We were basically on a total lockdown the first couple months. Parks and gyms were completely closed. Over the last few months gyms have opened allowing for weight training, on court training and full cardio use which has helped me stay in shape.
Q: What are the biggest learnings from your pro experience so far?
A: I have been able to learn a lot over the past few years playing in Europe. I've had the pleasure of playing on teams with both young players as well as experienced veterans which allowed me to really pick their brains for more basketball knowledge. I've really learned the importance of being a professional at all times, showing up to film and practice early, making sure you are taking care of your body with treatment and eating the right foods to stay fueled. I've been able to see the importance of watching film and scouting. Generally the deeper into the season you get the harder the grind is to win games and small details and adjustments can be the difference between wins and losses.
Q: Why should a team sign you for this ongoing season?
A: I am a player who will do whatever it takes to win. Winning has always been my first priority on a team. I am a player who can knock down open shots, rebound, defend, and brings that much needed energy and positivity to a team. I am a proven winner who brings it every night and has all the intangibles to make a team successful.
Q: What are your plans for the next couple weeks?
A: My plans for the next few weeks are to continue to train and stay in the best shape possible until the right opportunity is presented. I will continue to try to stay healthy during this Corona pandemic while perfecting my craft.