July 7, 2012

Where are they now? A Look at the career of Josh Heytvelt

Few basketball players have the grit, determination, and maturity to not only overcome adversity, but to excel. Josh Heytvelt exhibited these attributes when as a sophomore facing a felony drug charge he stood up in center court and delivered an apology to the entire Kennel Club nation.  That day is one of the most memorable days I ever experienced in K2.  The stands were filled with students crying- both hurt that the excitement of the post season would have to be endured without our best big man, and with admiration for the strength of character it took for him to deliver that apology.  At that moment, I knew I would always respect Josh Heytvelt. 

So, where is he today?

Heytvelt has spent the last four years trying to make a name for himself in Europe.  After successful stints in Turkey (Team: Oyak Renault Bursa) and Italy (Team: Lottamatica Virtus Roma), he made his way to Croatia for the end of the 2011 season and remained for the 2011-2012 season.  A fan favorite for his new team KK Zagreb – Josh recorded season averages of 9.1 points and 5.6 rebounds per game (avg 22.8 min) during the Euroleague season in 10 games played, and 6.3 points per game and 4.2 rebounds (avg 19.1 min) in the 10 games played in the Adriatic League.  Note: The Adriatic League is a league comprised of the best teams from the former Yugoslavia. 

In the 2011-2012 season, Josh ranked highly in several categories in the Euroleague ranks:

o   Ranked #6 in Defensive Rebounds with 48
o   Ranked #14 in 3-pointers made with 16 (shot 38%)
o   Ranked #16 in 2-point % at 66.7%
o   Ranked #18 in Total Rebounds (56)
o   Ranked #32 in Fouls Committed (28)

Notable Achievements:

o   Helped KK Zagreb win the 2010-2011 Croatian National Championship and the 2011 Croatian National Cup
o   Participated in the 2012 Croatian All Star Game and led all scorers with 29 points

This Summer:
Josh spent last week participating in the Spokane Hoop Fest.  His team, comprised of former Gonzaga players David Pendergraft (AKA: Pendo) and Brian Michaelson, as well as Nik Raivio (younger brother to Derek Raivio), won the Men’s Elite Championship with a game-ending alley-oop to Josh Heytvelt.

Although all of us would love to see Josh playing in the NBA in the near future, it doesn’t look to be in the cards for this season as he is set to return to Turkey with his new team Tofas Bursa for the 2012-2013 season.


Mary Taylor said...

Well done! thank you!

Brianna Brooks said...

Thanks Mary! Glad you enjoyed it.

Gonzagapride said...

Great article! I can't wait to read about more of our favorite Zags!

gaz-tastic said...

I too had a lot of respect for Josh. That must have been extremely hard to open up his heart like that to so many people, and admit his wrongs.

I remember being irritated at Coach Few because I thought he was being to much of a hard a** and felt he needed to give Josh a second chance. Few said that if not for the administration's push for redemption, he would have cut him loose. Is forgiveness not a Catholic teaching?

I will also never forget how Josh absolutely handled Tyler Hansborough and played better than anyone in the Hershey's All-Star game.

Very talented, and I for one am glad he turned it around and ended up having a fantastic career at GU.

Wonderful job Brianna!!~