Jazz Ferguson: One of the best players in Europe

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In high school, Jazzmarr Ferguson was one of the best basketball players in the state of Kentucky. He played at Moore High School in Louisville. Senior year he averaged 19 points per game and was named an all-region player. The guard would take his talents to Indiana University Southeast and became the best player in school history.

Ferguson became the Grenadier’s all-time leading scorer. He holds the record for most career points with 2,042. Not only was he a prolific scorer, but Ferguson is second all-time in assist with 487 total assists. The guard was named Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Player of the Year in 2010-2011, NAIA first-team All-American, and NABC All-American. During the four years; Ferguson was at IU Southeast, the team won the KIAC championship every year. He is one of the most decorated players in NAIA history.

Photo Cred: RiverStatesConfrence.com

Ferguson is proof that you do not have to play at a big school to make it professionally. He signed his first pro contract with Moncton Miracles in the NBL Canada league. After the season, Jazz moved to Australia, finalizing a deal with the SEABL, the second-tier Australian League. The following season, he joined the Bendigo Braves; in the same league. Playing in Canada and Australia prepared him for playing in one of the best leagues in Europe.

Photo Cred: Scaligera Basket Verona

“The differences between American and international cultures are easy to identify. In American culture, we emphasize highlighting the star players and usually play a lot through them.” Ferguson said.” In international play, team play is always the established culture. The best players usually get everything through a team system. Usually never in isolation situations.”

In 2013 he signed to play in Italy. He played 29 games averaging 17.6 points, 2.7 assists, and shot an excellent 41.8% from three. Ferguson would go on to play for other teams and leagues throughout the decade. In the 2019-2020 season, he played at the Assigeco Piacenza. He would have his best season in Europe with 21.6 points, 3.4 rebounds, 3.1 assists, and 1.4 steals per game. Playing in Europe brought the guard a new perspective on foreign basketball.

Photo Cred: Ucc Assigeco Piacenza

“Adjusting to the international game is necessary for every foreigner that plays in Europe. It takes time and sometimes patience between the teams and players. But once you adjust, it becomes the normal way that you play basketball. It’s your job; most players willingly adjust. Others struggle to adjust, whether by choice or technically. It’s not for everyone.”

The combo-guard has strong offensive skills and has multiple weapons in its arsenal to break down defenses. This year “Andrea Pasca” Nardò announced that it reached an agreement with Jazzmarr Ferguson. The guard returned to Louisville over the summer to sharpen his game.

“My goal for the season is to re-establish myself in the Italian market. Lead by example. I’m on a team with some ambition to make the playoffs. I want to leave my imprint on each game. Especially as the season progresses. It’s a big year for me; that’s my approach every day.”

His love for the game is what inspires him the most. Ferguson is a student of the game. After 11 professional seasons, he still has a passion for the game. The guard draws inspiration from his peers. He has friends and mentees, international and American, that play at every level around the world. Ferguson seeks to let it be known, he’s one of the best players in Europe!

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