Top 16 profiles: Luksa Andric

Jan 03, 2012 by Print
Quietly, Luksa Andric has settled into a role as one of Galatasaray Medical Park’s most consistent and most productive players in helping to lead the Turkish Airlines Euroleague newcomer to the Top 16. The 26-year-old center leads the team in scoring and is second in both offensive rebounding and fouls drawn, all of which have played crucial parts in the team’s success.

It should be no surprise that Andric has been such a prominent piece of the Galatasaray puzzle. He entered the season with 72 Euroleague games under his belt accumulated during five seasons with Cibona Zagreb in his native Croatia. In four of his seasons there, Andric started more than half the games. In three of them Cibona reached the Top 16. And by his last year, 2009-10, Andric was among Cibona’s top three in scoring, rebounding, steals and blocks on a Top 16 team.

Andric grew up in the junior ranks of his hometown club KK Dubrovnik on the coast of the Adriatic Sea. He was considered an elite prospect early and Cibona tabbed him for its under-18 team. After some seasoning on loan for parts of two seasons at Dubrava Zagreb, Andric became an integral part of the Cibona rotation by the time he was 20. At first Andric was mostly an energy player – he fouled out of four games in 15 minutes or less that season and averaged more fouls per game (3.6) than either points (2.9) or rebounds (2.1). But the best was yet to come.

Though he remained somewhat foul prone, Andric became a more important part of Cibona every season. And by the summer of 2010, he decided to spread his wings and head to Istanbul to play for Galatasaray. In his first Eurocup season, Andric not only managed to keep his fouls in check and stay on the floor longer, but ranked among the competition leaders in shooting percentage. And in the Turkish League, Andric helped his team reach the playoff finals and secure a spot in the Turkish Airlines Euroleague Qualifying Rounds.

From the start of this season, Andric has continued to lead the way. He was Galatasaray’s top scorer in the qualifying rounds and has not stopped producing since. Now he looks to establish himself on an even brighter stage in the Top 16. With GS Medical Park poised to face some elite big men in the battle for the Playoffs, the pressure will be on, but that also means another opportunity to shine for Luksa Andric.