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3×3 World Cup – One on One With Alexander Zuev

3×3 World Cup – One on One With Alexander Zuev

At 22-years-old, Zuev is currently the NO.1 player in Russia. All eyes will be on this rising star from Russia, as he has proven that he can already hold his own, and lead his team on the 3×3 court.

You’re called one of the most talented 3×3 players. Does that put any pressure on you?

Yes, I heard about it. But it does not disturb me. 

How did you become the best 3×3 player in Russia?

We played well at a lot of tournaments tournaments. I scored a lot of points and became the best. 

Why do you think you’re better than other 3×3 players?

I do not think I am better than other players. Each player has his own strengths. I believe that you do not need to compare yourself with others. The main thing is getting better and stronger for yourself. 

Why is your game so well suited for 3×3 basketball?

I love the fast game. I’m pretty good at throwing a three-pointers. For 3×3 basketball this is very useful. 

What is your biggest 3×3 achievement so far?

That we became U23 World Champion

Who will be your biggest competitors during the World Cup?

National teams of Serbia, Latvia, USA, Netherlands. The rest of the teams will also be very strong. 

What are your expectations for the World Cup in Amsterdam?

I think that the World Championship will be organized at the highest level. Conditions will be excellent. And our task is to show the best game. 

What do you and your team need to do to have a chance to win the World Cup?

It is necessary to concentrate on each game as on the last. And of course in 3х3 good fortune and luck is very important. 

Photo: Fiba

What does your ideal 3×3 team look like?

We now have the perfect team and the ideal trainer. I like to play with my partners. We are Family. 

How many 3×3 games do you play per month?

On average, we play 3 tournaments per month. It means about 10-15 games. In breaks between tournaments we train. 

5×5 basketball is quite popular in Russia. How big is 3×3 basketball?

Basketball 3×3 is not as popular as 5×5 in Russia. But over the last year, the Russian Federation of Basketball began to invest in this sport. 3×3 is a very fast, interesting and entertaining game. Just a few people know about this sport. If on TV showed this sport, the popularity would greatly increase. I hope that to the Olympic Games more and more people will love this sport. 

How did you get involved with 3×3?

I played in the 5×5 league. When the season ended, I spent every summer in the 3×3 street tournaments. But it was rather to keep in shape. And last year I received an invitation to come to the Russian national team 3×3 training camp. So it was my arrival in this sport. Now I can say for sure that the 3×3 game is a great love for me. I am very grateful that fate linked me to this sport. 

What’s the best part about playing tournaments everywhere in the world?

I like atmosphere 3х3, show, passion of a game, rivalry, music, the best fans, loud tribunes. In general it is possible to tell that 3х3 is the whole whole trend with its own culture. 

What is the ultimate goal? The Olympics?

I think each athlete dreams to get and win the Olympic Games. And I among them. And in general our task to become the best team in the world. Time will tell. For now we will train hard, play at a high level and make our fans happy.

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