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January 31, 2011

Photo: Denis Svirčić


University of San Francisco freshman, Marko Petrović





This past weekend, CSR caught up with University of San Francisco freshman Marko Petrović in Los Angeles. Petrović is the nephew of late Croatian basketball legend, Dražen Petrović, who tragically passed away in 1993 to a freak car accident. Marko talked soccer, basketball and even girls with CSR. He will represent Croatia at the U-20 European Basketball Championships this summer in Spain.


-Interview by Denis Svirčić




Photo: Denis Svirčić


Commentary by Dennis Fistonić



Ante Kvartuč
Posted By: Ante Kvartuč 56 comments

  1. Ante B says:

    Marko, prijatelju, cestitam i nek' se zna:


    Excellent interview boys! Rack him.

    ps. DINAMO ZAGREB!!!!!

  2. Ante B says:


    Excellent game calling skills and interview session. You gotta do it again. What's the signature line gonna be?

  3. Debeli Amerikanac says:

    ma daj Ante kakve ti imas veze s Dinamom? kaj se pravis ko neki bad blue boy? daj molim te ne jedi govna

  4. Ante B says:

    A i ti si debeli amerikanac? bravo! barem smo isti kaj se tog tice. kakve ja veze imam s Dinamom? Pa……….nista osim kaj sam putoval po Europi i HRV s njim dok si ti doma bil. tebi je bolje da nista ne jedes, vjeruj mi

  5. Dennis Fistonić says:

    Hvala brate.. the interview and game were both great. Marko told us some fantastic stories of his father and uncle during their playing days, classic stuff.

    As far as commentating signatures goes, I guess you'll have to find out at Indian Wells in one month's time.

  6. Branimir says:

    Nice game calling Fisto!!! Im impressed.

  7. CleveCro says:

    Hope Marko can make it to the NBA and get drafted by Cleveland. Been following him since his prep days. Seen his uncle drop 40 on us, hopefully Marko can do the same for us.

    Ante, do you have any more Crottenham shirts available by chance??

  8. dukic says:

    wonderful natural interview. enjoyed everything about it. keep up the good work csr.

    and ante bbb. dude. no more dinamo chance. lets not takeover this post with arguments. we all know hajduk is better…

  9. Ante B says:

    I didn't start. Marko is apparently a hardcore dinamovac and I wrote a chant. If that bothers people in a post about a dinamovac, go ahead and let it. I'm going to go enjoy some napolitanke. Zbogom

  10. ziva istina says:

    @CleveCro…..Nice interview, but this kid has ZERO chance in the NBA. I don't even think he is good enough for the national team back in Cro. Wish him the best, but we wont be hearing much from him in the future. You won't have to worry about him dropping 40 on Cleveland like his uncle. In a few years time you wont even have an NBA team in that dump of a city. Good hrvati in Cleveland, but that city is a shit hole.

  11. Rob says:

    Another great interview guys.

  12. JP says:

    Nice work guys, and Good luck Marko!


    don't let him bother you, that's our resident wet blanket Mr. Istina… he's not much of an optimist.

    btw., there's no reason Marko couldn't be at least as good as Dragic and Vujacic or somewhere thereabouts if he applies himself. Steve Nash isn't built much different. It's about the will and the work, and if Marko has that, he can make it, if not, well then he can hopefully do other things… the other things is what the studying is all about, it'll help his game too. Nash dominates because he plays at a different level mentally. A lot like Drazen did, when i come to think about it.

  13. Ante Kvartuč says:

    @ Fisto,

    Good stuff man! Sounds like everyone loves you. Clippers might need a new play-by-play guy soon. The organization is sick of Ralph Lawler being late for games…

    Marko is a good kid and is still a freshman. He still has plenty of time to develop his game. Looks like he will be able to play that Kyle Korver-like sniper role in the corner for the 3. Time will tell. We wish him the best.

  14. Anonymous says:

    I agree with ziva, watching him play, I mean he's ok… but NBA? Euro-league? Seriously? I would love for him to prove me wrong though 🙂 Follow your dreams and don't listen to people like me kid!

  15. Dan says:

    Hey Ante, are there any more crottenham tops in stock? Lost my old one and i wouldn't mind buying another one.

  16. Allen19 says:

    Another great interview. I really enjoyed that and I loved those funny awkward moments when he said Dinamo and Celtics. As for his NBA chances, guys it's still way too early. I wish he was in a power conference school, but with teams like Gonzaga and St.Mary's in his conference, he has a chance to shine nationally with good performances. If he continues to develop, you never know. I hope to see him in a NCCA tournament one day, thats where anything can happen. Also he's a smart kid, he knows where it's at in Miami!! ( lol idrc im still a disgusted heat fan).

    Great commnentary Fisto, wow it was a breakout game for him. He has that classic European shot and that and one was impressive. I will start to follow him much more now. Maybe they make the NCCA tournament, but I highly doubt they get past St.Mary's in the post season tournament, that's the only way they can make it.

  17. ziva istina says:

    Don't get me wrong, I hope the kid makes it into the NBA. We can surely use another Cro in the league. But, lets also be serious here. There is not much in his game that makes me think he can play in the NBA.

    Someone compared him to a Dragic or Vujacic….He is not even close in the foot speed compared with Dragic. Vujacic seems to be able to knock down the 3-point shot. A quick look at the stats shows little Petro is below 40% shooter.

  18. KING BRONK says:

    The kid came off as a bit of a loser to be honest. Typical of this new generation they don't care about anything except themselves. Trust me this kid is going nowhere fast in basketball. He just plain stinks. He wants to play in Miami. The only way that kid ever dresses for the Miami Heat is if he puts on a Heat apron selling hot dogs at the concession stands.

  19. JP says:

    Just for you Ziva… Klasnic gets bail…

    Just out of curiosity is 17-legal in Hrvatska…? I heard that in Italy the age is 14 🙂

  20. Anonymous says:

    Fisto! You're a natural ;). Keep 'em coming.

  21. ziva istina says:

    If there is grass on the field….its legal.

    True story……maybe 10 years ago in Italy, a female filed rape charges. The case went to court and the judge ruled against the girl and said there was no way rape could have been committed…..the logic offered up by the judge…..the girl was wearing tight jeans and in his view, there is no way any man would have been able to rape her without her consent in remving the jeans because of how skin tight they were.

    I think this defesne might work for Klasnic.

  22. Allen19 says:

    Hey King Bronk… have you watched any full game of him? Don't make comments about his game, when you probably have never watched a full game. Seriously don't just look at stats, watch a damn game. He is still a freshman and still has three more years.

  23. Allen19 says:

    Hey King Bronk… have you watched any full game of him? Don't make comments about his game, when you probably have never watched a full game. Seriously don't just look at stats, watch a damn game. He is still a freshman and still has three more years.

  24. TheGoldenChild says:

    I hope Marko looks at the comments and feeds off the negativity. He knows he needs to improve and that's why he came to college. He doesn't look like the best out there, but there is definitely potential. It all depends on him though, and how hard he wants to work.

    The kid has the name, and glimpses of talent, he just needs to deliver. Hopefully, he won't be on the bench during the final minutes of the game in the future.

    Good luck to you buddy.


    Without people like ziva being the "wet blanket", the forums would get boring. He tells it like it is, and usually has some pretty valid points.

  25. Denis Svirčić says:

    CSR makes Vecernji List:

    Vecernji List

    I will return to comment on Petro

  26. Anonymous says:

    Bravo Crotian Soccer Report! Večernji list picks up your story! Nice interview! Proud to be part of the team! Pozdrav iz Zagreba od Miss CSR

  27. ziva istina says:

    If this kids last name was anything else but Petrovic, nobody would care about him. Hopefully he uses the scholarship and gets himself an education, gets a degree, because he will not be anything as a basketball player.

    I wish him the best.

  28. Anonymous says:

    @ Dukic

    na poljudu na poljudu
    sa ona strana marjana
    navijamo, navijaomo
    navvijamo za hajduka.

    Hajduk zivi vjecno

  29. Anonymous says:

    Na drugom mjestu.

  30. Raptore says:

    Bravo Bravo.. A Classic Interview, All the best to Marko & his future, Just needs to stay positive & determined, Basketball is in his Genes,so his got a good chance & the greatest insperation of all, he has the late Drazen Petrovic watching over him..

    Would dig seeing him get drafted by Milwaukee while Bogut is playing their, Ive heard that Drazen had a huge influence on him, i think he even visited Drazens Cemetery before heading of to the NBA..

  31. Ante Kvartuč says:

    @ Dan,

    We have 3 or 4 left. XL only. Shoot us an email if you want one.

    @ ziva,

    You're right. If his name wasn't Petrovic, people wouldn't blink at the kid. However, he, as well as Duje Dukan and Marin Kukoc, are the future of Croatian basketball. 2 of the 3 have legacies to preserve.

    I like this situation because 1) they are all in the States and accessible to us and 2) we get to see them grow up. We get to interview the kid when he's only 19 years old. We're buying his stock while it's low.

    Hopefully Marko makes an appearance on this board to answer some of these comments, but he was a cool guy…fit right in with the CSR boys.

    In his defense, Marko has huge shoes to fill. Both his uncle and father were Croatian legends, not to mention what Drazen did with the Nets in the NBA. We will follow his progress…all we can do for now.

  32. ziva istina says:

    You can throw Dukan and Kukoc in the same mix… chance of any extended success for an of them. Well, maybe Dukan. Neither have played this year, but that is sometimes the norm at Wisconsin. Not unusual for a player at Wiscy to get more time in his junior and senior seasons. The Wiscy system is set up that way.

    But, I think I can easily proclaim now that none of these three will ever get a sniff in the NBA and I really doubt they will have an impact on the cro national team.

    Both are at good schools, so hopefully they take advantage of that.

  33. Steve V. says:

    In other news, Modric's appendix had to be removed. They say two weeks on the sidelines, but I think it might be longer.

  34. NYC CROAT says:

    i rememeber when drazen died, me and my dad has season tickets to the nets, i was just a little kid maybe 2-3 grade, we went to every game and i can still remember croatians everywhere, i have a nets jersey from that season,i bought it size large,it was so big my dad told me to buy it big so i can always wear it, im glad i did, in summer time i wear it and people always stop me and talk about how great he was going to be…if marko makes it or not thats up to him, im sure he has alot of pressure on him, family and croatians everywhere, we are all wishing for another DRAZEN PETROVIC to come along, he gave us hope at the time croatians needed it most, no matter what those of us croatians who saw him played will always have that memory…MARKO good luck kiddo, dont let this pass you buy, the ball is in your court!

  35. Denis Svirčić says:

    As soon as I finished the interview, I knew that Ante B would be all over this kid. It turns out that Drazen was a Hajdukovac and Marko’s father Aco was a Dinamovac. Drazen and Aco would get into it all the time.

    After the interview, Marko, Dennis Fistonich, Ante Kvartuc and I had drinks at the bar. Good old Fanta for are little friend, while the rest of us were throwing back black label. Marko shared a few stories with us about his uncle. I will not share all of this because some of it was definitely private. I will share one of his stories.

    When Marko’s dad(Aco) was playing for Cibona and Drazen was playing for Real Madrid, Drazen was at the line with 5 seconds left or so and Madrid down 1. Aco came up to Drazen and said “Drazen, miss these two free throws. This win would mean so much to Cibona.” Drazen said “ok” and then sank both free throws. Cibona lose.

    If Drazen was alive in today’s NBA, how would he react to all the match fixing?

    Will this kid make the NBA, probably not. At 6’3” his chances are miniscule. However, who said that we couldn’t dream.

    Ante and I try to make the interviews interesting and fun. Obviously, jumping on Marko over Boston-Lakers was all fun and game. All three of us watched the video 10 minutes after and had some good laughs.

    @Ante B,

    Marko is right in your neighborhood. You should go check out one of his games.


    Shoot me an email:


    Thanks for the kind words.


    A little cold, don’t you think? No one expects him to make the NBA. We are all wishing here. I don’t think anyone here has Petro at 50% making the NBA. The chances of him making it in the NBA are 1/1000.


    Thank you sir


    I agree with you. However, if you look at the odds, a Steve Nash comes around only once every 20 years. If the kid continues to work on his shot, he’ll be fine. The sky is the limit.

    @Allen 19,

    Glad you liked the interview. We are just talking NBA. Just talking “if” not as if he is declaring himself for the draft next season.

    @King Bronk,

    “The kid came off as a bit of a loser to be honest.” Really? How so? I think you are being a little harsh on the kid. First, he said he’s going back to Europe. I was pressuring him with the NBA talk.

    “Trust me this kid is going nowhere fast in basketball. He just plain stinks.” Have you watched his games? Also, he is a freshman playing against juniors and seniors. Is he NBA quality? NO, at least not yet. He could have a decent college career and then a decent European career.


    I couldn’t have said it better myself

    @miss CSR



    Good comment. I wish we had more time with Bogut to ask him about Petro.

    @NYC Croat,

    Nice story, I agree with your Marko take

  36. ziva isitna says:

    That Petro story is well known. Guy was a killer.

  37. shinobi says:

    great interveiw fellas, nicely done. Drazen Petrovic was my idol growing up, its good to see theres a small part of him is still on the court.

  38. NYC CROAT says:

    type in

    or go to and type "Drazen Petrovic @ NBA-Planet"

    what a great story about drazen…marko starts it off actually…i remember watching this 5 years or so ago and i always hoped marko would make it in the nba. i still always hope for the next great croat , but im always happy for what we had in the 90's, i was a kid then and i took it for granted,season nets tickets, watching croatia play the dream team, even world cup 98, but i but i know when ever i talk about it my dads face lights up, i showed him this interview today and u could tell it brought back the memories…will croatia ever be the sporting champs they were in the 1990s? i dunt know but im glad i saw it all, and red n white checkers will always be on my chest waiting for the next great croatian sensation

  39. ziva istina says:

    actually croatia was never sporting champs in the 90's……we never won anything in basketball, although you can consider a silver in 92 as good as gold having to play the dream team.

    The reason we had success in soccer and basketball in the 90's is because of the yugoslav sports system and what they were able to produce…..all our core basketball players and soccer players were produced by the yugo system.

  40. nyc croat says:

    i ment champs as in "more achivements" then we do now. i mean a silver in basket ball, 3ed in WC and a champion tennis player are outstanding…i fear those days will be few and far inbetween

  41. JP says:

    Ziva are you saying that Yugoslavia is to account for all of our wonderful sporting achievement in the 1990's… ?

  42. dukic says:

    ziva istina. es ti kreten? if jugo used more croatians they wouldve been champs in many more sports. croatian athletes in the 90s gave all their heart for croatia because they were proud. they had a burden on their shoulders to lift the spirits of the country and they did that successfully. wc 1998 made everybody forget about the war. what difference that this generation have talent wise in football then 98? none at all. samo si oni imali vise srca onda. thats why i hate that eduardo plays for croatia. sure he is a nice guy ali nema hrvatsko srce. hrvatsko srce i ljubav za domovinu su nama pomogli u devedesete godine ne partizansko govno od jugoslavije. sram te bilo sto si uopce rekao to.

  43. ziva istina says:

    I don't doubt any of that, but I think the yugo system is what made the basketball team. Yes, they played with heart, but they also played well because of the coaching and the system they grew up in.

    Where have we gone in basketball since croatian coaches began developing our talent?

    We have good coaches in soccer, rukomet and water polo. But, even back in the day the best coaches were all serbs for baskeetball. Look at the Jugoplastika teams of the late 80s and early 90s….serb coaching.

  44. Ante B says:

    Politics aside (I know, shocking), the only positive thing about old yugo that all parties can agree on was the sports. Definitely top tier in Europe. I'm pretty sure even the left and right will agree with that statement. Just look at nogomet and kosarka. Two reasons why the sports were so good was because the excellent youth systems of most clubs AND keeping the talent in the country until they reached the age of 27. That is virtually impossible today when a kid can leave Croatia at 18-23 to go play wherever they want.

    Dukic, you sound like a young guy who probably doesn't remember too much of the old yugo sports which is fine; that's not a negative and I'm not using that against you. But, if you look at old VHS tapes of the games, you can see the difference in the quality of play. Now, if your argument is based purely on hrvatsko srce, I'll agree but one of the main reasons our teams of the 90's were so good was because of the old yugo system. Heart, pride and determination were definitely other key factors.

    Ziva is absolutely correct with that statement he made earlier.

  45. Denis Svirčić says:


    Thanks for the link. Great video.


    thanks for the kind words

  46. JP says:

    @Ante B and @Ziva

    I'm intrigued that you guys think this way… it's an easy conclusion to come to, but I don't agree at all for the most part.

    You're forgetting at least one very huge factor, which is population size. Comparing Croatian sports to Tito-sports is a false comparison.

    And furthermore, were Serb b-ball coaches (who are/were supposedly superior) better because they had the opportunities to get better, while others did not?

    If today's Croatian government took as active an interest in sports development, as Tito did (and many other commie nations did for political reasons), the current/future results would be even better than the 90's.

    I agree that "srce" was an important factor to post-independence successes, but that's largely learned/chosen, and can be taught again. If you look at Draz, he had the desire and will of a warrior. He wanted to be the absolute best, and he put in the work to get there. Certainly he was a gifted athlete, but he was no Shawn Kemp. He was fearless, accepted every challenge, had a superior mind and will, and worked continuously to improve himself and sharpen his skills.

  47. Denis Svirčić says:

    I wont get into this argument guys. Its been a loooooooong week. Besides, this is as controversial as it gets. No right or wrong answer.'s sports website) likes what they see on CSR. picks up video

  48. ziva istina says:

    I don't really see how it is controversial. The results speak for themselves with the players brought up in the "yugo" basketball system and players brought up post "yugo".

    Kukoc, Radja, Vrankovic, Petrovic, Tabak, Komozec…..all players who achieved something in the NBA or Europe were all products of the old system. What do we have from players who were schooled by croat coaches….Vujcic and that is it.

  49. N.K Croatia Versmold e.V says:

    Dragi Marko


    Croatia Versmold

  50. Anonymous says:

    Ime Isusovo bilo mi u pomoci…

    It is for the first time that I agree with Ziva and Ante B at the same time. I can not explain the reasons for it, but that system did produced better players.

    Pozdrav iz Splita

  51. Ante B says:

    I see absolutely nothing controversial in any of our statements either.

  52. ziva istina says:

    anyone see what Marko Petrovic did last night….dude had a chris webber moment. not good.

  53. Denis Svirčić says:

    @Ziva Istina,

    I watched the second half. Yes, reminded me of Chris Webber back at Michigan.

    I blame the USF coaches for failing to tell their players that they are out of time outs. Everyone on the bench was signaling for a time out and after it was called, the entire USF team looked like they didn't know they were out of time outs. Yes, Petro was on the bench flashing the time out signal, however, he wasnt the only one. What a terrible way to end the season.

  54. Denis Svirčić says:

    Yes it did look like Walters approached Petrovic in the end. Here is what Marko said in an email:

    "Hvala ti puno prijatelju…na kraju mi nismo imali timeout I kad je rashad ukrao loptu zvao je timeout I kak nismo imali gonzaga je dobila 2 bacanja."

    For those of you that dont speak Croatian… He basically said that Rashad called the timeout.

    Petrovic wouldnt say if the coaches mentioned anything about not having a timeout during the timeout. From the reaction on Rex Walters face, it looked like he didn't know himself. Also, I dont believe anyone mentioned anything about a timeout in the huddle.

    Petro has a good grasp of the English language. No way he would have called a timeout if he knew they were out of time outs. I blame the coaches on this one.

  55. Ante Kvartuč says:

    Chris Webber part Deux…

    Petrovic might have a decent shot and the energy of a Red Bull, but with all that he still lacks composure. Yes he's still a freshman, but in the two USF games we covered this year (plus what I saw in the final seconds vs. Gonzaga) he's more of a cheerleader on the bench than a basketball player. He needs to learn how to focus that energy in gametime moments instead of wasting it cheering on the bench.

    He got decent playing time this season. Averaged 15 mins a game. You can't be going crazy on the bench cheering for teammates and then come into the game 30 seconds later.

    He would immediately become a 30% better player if someone sat him down and told him to become more composed on the bench. To focus his energy on the game. It's a small immature freshman quality that I see in Petrovic. Something I hope he can dust off in the offseason.

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