Mindaugas Kuzminskas

Mindaugas Kuzminskas (born October 19, 1989) is a Lithuanian professional basketball player for Zenit Saint Petersburg of the VTB United League and the EuroLeague. He also represents the Lithuanian national team. He is 2.05 m (6'8 34") tall, and he can play both the small forward and power forward positions.

Mindaugas Kuzminskas
Mindaugas Kuzminskas by Augustas Didzgalvis.jpg
Kuzminskas with Lithuanian national team
No. 19 – Zenit Saint Petersburg
PositionSmall forward / Power forward
LeagueVTB United League
EuroLeague
Personal information
Born (1989-10-19) 19 October 1989 (age 31)
Vilnius, Lithuanian SSR, Soviet Union
NationalityLithuanian
Listed height6 ft 9 in (2.06 m)
Listed weight215 lb (98 kg)
Career information
NBA draft2011 / Undrafted
Playing career2006–present
Career history
2006–2007Sakalai
2007–2008Perlas
2008–2010Šiauliai
2010–2013Žalgiris
2013–2016Málaga
20162017New York Knicks
2018–2019Olimpia Milano
2019Olympiacos
2019–2021Lokomotiv Kuban
2021–presentZenit Saint Petersburg
Career highlights and awards
Stats Edit this at Wikidata at NBA.com
Stats at Basketball-Reference.com
Medals
Men's basketball
Representing  Lithuania
EuroBasket
Silver medal – second place 2013 Slovenia
Silver medal – second place 2015 France
Kuzminskas with Olimpia Milano in 2018

Professional careerEdit

EuropeEdit

Kuzminskas started his basketball career in 2006 with Sakalai where he played for one season. For the 2007–08 season, he moved to Perlas. In the summer of 2008, he signed with Šiauliai.

In September 2009, Kuzminskas signed with Žalgiris, but he stayed one more season on loan with Šiauliai.[1] In 2010, he joined Žalgiris and stayed with the team for three seasons.

In June 2013, Kuzminskas signed a contract with the Spanish team Unicaja.[2] On 22 October 2015, Kuzminskas scored his EuroLeague career-high 23 points and led his team to triumph versus the Maccabi Tel Aviv 93–82 in Tel Aviv.[3] Then on 13 November, Kuzminskas played his most efficient EuroLeague game of 30 PIR points (22 points (2FG: 6/7, 3FG: 3/5, FT: 1/1), 4 rebounds, 3 steals) and led Unicaja to another outstanding away-game victory, this time against CSKA Moscow, winning 86–78.[4][5][6] In 36 league games for Unicaja in 2015–16, he averaged 10.3 points, 3.0 rebounds and 1.1 assists per game.

NBAEdit

On 9 July 2016, Kuzminskas signed with the New York Knicks.[7][8][9] On 25 October 2016, he made his debut for the Knicks in their season opener, scoring seven points in nine minutes off the bench in a 117–88 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers.[10] On 12 January 2017, he scored a season-high 19 points in a 104–89 win over the Chicago Bulls.[11]

On 12 November 2017, Kuzminskas was waived by the Knicks to make room for the return of the suspended Joakim Noah.[12] He appeared in 68 games during his rookie season, but just one game to begin his second season.[13]

Return to EuropeEdit

On 1 January 2018, Kuzminskas signed with the Italian club Olimpia Milano.[14] On 1 July 2019, Kuzminskas parted ways with Olimpia Milano after a season and a half playing for them and winning one Italian championship.

On 22 July 2019, Kuzminskas signed a two-year contract with Greek club Olympiacos.[15] On 9 November 2019, with playing time declining since October, Kuzminskas was released from the Greek club. On 11 November 2019, Kuzminskas signed a 1.5 million deal with Lokomotiv Kuban.[16][17] Kuzminskas was selected to the 2020 VTB United League All-Star Game where he scored 14 points, grabbed 1 rebound and dished out 4 assists.[18] During the 2020-21 season, Kuzminskas averaged 13 points και 4.5 rebounds in 40 games in the VTB United League and the EuroCup.

On July 5, 2021, he signed with Zenit Saint Petersburg of the VTB United League and the EuroLeague.[19]

Career statisticsEdit

Legend
  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field-goal percentage  3P%  3-point field-goal percentage  FT%  Free-throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  PIR  Performance Index Rating
 Bold  Career high

EuroLeagueEdit

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG PIR
2010–11 Žalgiris 8 1 6.8 .357 .167 .667 1.0 .1 .3 .0 1.6 1.3
2011–12 12 0 8.4 .555 .143 .706 1.3 .2 .2 .0 2.8 2.8
2012–13 23 5 14.1 .527 .324 .829 3.1 .3 .5 .2 7.1 7.7
2013–14 Unicaja 24 16 14.2 .472 .314 .633 2.3 .5 .5 .3 6.3 5.6
2014–15 24 20 21.8 .450 .275 .813 4.5 1.5 .9 .4 10.0 12.5
2015–16 23 20 21.3 .486 .377 .827 3.4 1.0 .6 .3 12.0 11.6
2017–18 Olimpia 14 13 21.6 .474 .432 .795 2.4 1.4 .5 .6 10.9 9.6
2018–19 30 1 17.0 .514 .469 .859 3.3 .7 .5 .3 8.5 8.8
Career 158 76 16.5 .475 .359 .800 3.0 .8 .5 .2 8.1 8.3

EurocupEdit

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG PIR
2019–20 Lokomotiv 4 0 23.3 .500 .385 .846 2.0 1.5 .5 .3 12.5 11
2020–21 19 15 26.4 .550 .344 .775 4.4 1.5 .3 .7 12.4 13.6

NBAEdit

Regular seasonEdit

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2016–17 New York 68 5 14.9 .428 .321 .809 1.9 1.0 .4 .2 6.3
2017–18 New York 1 0 2.0 .000 .0 .0 .0 .0 .0
Career 69 5 14.8 .426 .321 .809 1.8 1.0 .4 .2 6.2

Personal lifeEdit

Both of Kuzminskas' parents were professional athletes, his father, Vladas, played table tennis, while his mother, Zita, was a professional basketball player.[20] He also has an older brother, Saulius, who was also a professional basketball player between 1999 and 2015.[21] When Kuzminskas was 13 he visited Canada. During his trip to Canada, he toured the Toronto Raptors' arena[22] and went to Kretinga, a Lithuanian Youth Summer Camp in Wasaga Beach, Ontario.[23] In 2017, after 6 years of dating, he married Lithuanian ballet dancer Eglė Andreikaitė. The couple announced their separation in 2019.[24]

Don't Snooze On KuzEdit

While in the NBA, a fan-made Instagram account entitled "dontsnoozeonkuz" gained popularity through various satirical and serious postings about Kuzminskas. The account mainly focused on promoting Kuzminskas as a basketball player, and frequently requested his then-current team, the New York Knicks, to increase his playing time. Kuzminskas followed "dontsnoozeonkuz," which as amassed over 1,200 followers, on June 29, 2017. "Dontsnoozeonkuz" is still active today despite the end of Kuzminskas' NBA tenure.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Zalgiris inks Kuzminskas". Sportando.com. 11 September 2009. Retrieved 22 November 2014.
  2. ^ "Unicaja announce Mindaugas Kuzminskas". Eurobasket.com. 28 June 2013. Retrieved 22 November 2014.
  3. ^ "Rekordinio Mindaugo Kuzminsko vakaro atgarsiai: "Nesustabdomas. Užkariautojas. Žvaigždė"". 24sek.lt (in Lithuanian). Retrieved 23 October 2015.
  4. ^ "CSKA Moscow vs. Unicaja Malaga - Game". Euroleague.net. Retrieved 13 November 2015.
  5. ^ "Mindaugas Kuzminskas sužaidė geriausias karjeros Eurolygoje rungtynes". BasketNews.lt (in Lithuanian). Retrieved 13 November 2015.
  6. ^ "Ispanija ekstazėje – su Kuzminsku nors ir į pasaulio kraštą". 24sek.lt (in Lithuanian). Retrieved 14 November 2015.
  7. ^ "Knicks Sign Mindaugas Kuzminskas". NBA. 9 July 2016. Retrieved 9 July 2016.
  8. ^ "M. Kuzminskas – jau oficialiai NBA žaidėjas: tapau "Knicks" šeimos nariu!" (in Lithuanian). Delfi. 9 July 2016. Retrieved 9 July 2016.
  9. ^ "Mindaugas Kuzminskas: apie atradimus Niujorke, Porzingio pagalbą ir muzikinius sugebėjimus". BasketNews.lt. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  10. ^ "Knicks vs. Cavaliers – Box Score". ESPN.com. 25 October 2016. Retrieved 25 October 2016.
  11. ^ "Knicks beat Bulls with big games from Anthony, Rose, Noah". ESPN.com. 12 January 2017. Retrieved 13 January 2017.
  12. ^ "With Joakim Noah returning from suspension, Knicks waive Mindaugas Kuzminskas". ESPN.com. 12 November 2017. Retrieved 12 November 2017.
  13. ^ "New York Knicks waive forward Mindaugas Kuzminskas". NBA.com. 12 November 2017. Retrieved 12 November 2017.
  14. ^ "Mindaugas Kuzminskas is coming to Milan". Olimpiamilano.com. 1 January 2018. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
  15. ^ Γραβιά, Τζένη (22 July 2019). ""'Έπιασε" Λιμάνι ο Κουζμίνσκας!". Olympiacos BC (in Greek). Retrieved 23 July 2019.
  16. ^ "Mindaugas Kuzminskas joined Loko!". lokobasket.com. 11 November 2019. Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  17. ^ "Oficialu: 1,5 mln. eurų uždirbsiantis M.Kuzminskas padėjo parašą po sutartimi su "Lokomotiv-Kuban" ekipa". krepsinis.net (in Lithuanian). Retrieved 17 February 2020.
  18. ^ ""Pasaulio" rinktinei atstovavę A.Juškevičius ir M.Kuzminskas žibėjo Rusijos žvaigždžių mače". 15min.lt (in Lithuanian). Retrieved 17 February 2020.
  19. ^ "Миндаугас Кузминскас – новый игрок БК «Зенит»!". fc-zenit.ru (in Russian). 5 July 2021. Retrieved 5 July 2021.
  20. ^ Vorkunov, Mike (30 January 2017). "Why Not EuroKnicks? For Struggling Team, Hope From Abroad". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 May 2017.
  21. ^ "S.Kuzminskas pranešė apie karjeros pabaigą" (in Lithuanian). Retrieved 6 May 2015.
  22. ^ "Instagram post by Mindaugas Kuzminskas • Jan 15, 2017 at 7:07pm UTC". Instagram. Retrieved 27 September 2017.
  23. ^ "Lithuanian Youth Camp Kretinga / Kretingos Stovykla". www.facebook.com. Retrieved 27 September 2017.
  24. ^ "M. Kuzminskas patvirtino gandus apie skyrybas su žmona: aš norėjau šeimos ir vaikų" (in Lithuanian). Retrieved 17 September 2019.

External linksEdit