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Dušan Bulut's 3x3 Thrill
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No sleep until the Hall of Fame

NOVI SAD (Dusan Bulut's 3x3 Thrill) - After returning from the airport, around noon during the biggest heat wave, my cab got stuck in the traffic jam at the corner of Nraodnog Fronta and Dr.Ivana Ribara street. A couple of metres away there was a basketball court. Because of the shoulder pain, I held my Red Bull can with my other hand and got off the other side. When I looked out the window I saw a child shooting hoops by himself.  The court also known as Mad Boza’s court looked barren and very lonely. Brick board and metal net. Only the fountain that produced a weak stream of water embellished the scene a little bit.

The child was skinny, wearing red shorts and Nike sneakers, shirtless. For a moment I thought that the only rational explanation to practice under that sun is that he wanted to shed a few pounds, which he did not have enough of.
He moved quickly through the entire court, dribbling with great energy – I thought to myself that he is pushing himself too hard and is going to die on the court if he continues like that. For once I was grateful for the red traffic light on this temperature – the entire situation reminded me of myself.

We’ve been a team for little over 3 years now and in that time I think we have accomplished some amazing things. I’ve watched this team grow from 4 buddies from a small town into something that we couldn’t even imagine. We still love what we do and we definitely still love to compete and I think that will never change. Traveling from tournament to tournament has become, no matter how unique they all are, our everyday life. We developed traveling routines like chatting, playing cards or something else, which makes it simple while various countries fly below us. In each one we have met interesting people, dedicated some time to sightseeing, got to know different cultures from Japan, Qatar, Brazil, Czech Republic, Abu Dhabi, Hungary, anywhere we play we have so much fun, luckily for us, our next challenge was amazing: the Baku European games.

Victory, defeat, injuries and bronze medal, you think you've experienced it all and then you get to wear your country’s flag on this multi-sport competition. At one moment of boredom, while other athletes walked around in a circle, around the flag bearer, I realised that I'm very proud – I’ve started on the street and ended up on the world stage. At that moment I was very glad I did not listen to other people and told all those fools, coaches, team-mates, managers and fake friends to eff off.

That's why I liked the sight of that child so much who, with great dedication, kept pushing the ball into the hoop, not allowing anyone to meddle into his little life. Even if he doesn’t succeed he will always remain true to himself.

Now up to me and my team to remain true to ourselves during this exciting new 3x3 World Tour season.

Dusan Domovic Bulut

FIBA's columnists write on a wide range of topics relating to basketball that are of interest to them. The opinions they express are their own and in no way reflect those of FIBA.

FIBA takes no responsibility and gives no guarantees, warranties or representations, implied or otherwise, for the content or accuracy of the content and opinion expressed in the above article.

Dušan Bulut

Dušan Bulut

Strong like a bull and fast as a bullet, Dusan Domovic Bulut was the best fit for the ‘3x3 Thrill’, the first-ever column about 3x3 basketball on FIBA.com. A FIBA 3x3 World Champ with Serbia in 2012, the man also known as ‘Bulut Proof’ continued to shine at the city-based FIBA 3x3 World Tour with Team Novi Sad in 2013, winning the Prague Masters and finishing second at the Istanbul Final. His heroics helped him become the #1 3x3 player in the world – according to the 3x3 Individual World Ranking – from October to December last year. ‘3x3 Thrill’ is a monthly installment but if Dusan types as quick as he crosses the ball over, you might be reading his columns on a daily basis.