CHISINAU, Moldova -- While it may not be the mecca of basketball in the world, former Covenant men's basketball players Logan Dahms and Rosbie Mutcherson recently began their professional basketball careers in Moldova.
Dahms, who played his final year with the Scots in 2010-11, and Mutcherson, who finished up his collegiate career last season, both play with Donbasket-USM in Chisinau. Dahms was signed and began playing in late November, while Mutcherson arrived just after Christmas.
Moldova lies between Romania to the west and Ukraine to the east in eastern Europe. Chisinau is both the capital city and the largest city in the country, while also serving as the home to the former Scots.
"Biggest adjustments off the court is language obviously. Half the country speaks Romanian and half speak Russian," said Mutcherson. "Moldovan culture is very different. Lots of tea, room temperature drinks, and food without any preservatives. Milk goes bad in three days here."
Added Dahms, "Sometimes I joke that I feel like a 4-year-old again, learning to talk, read and write, and complete simple daily tasks all over again."
There has been an adjustment on the court as well for the two former Scots, but both players feel blessed for the opportunity they have been given to extend their playing careers.
"Playing in Moldova has been the opportunity of a lifetime so far," said Dahms. "We're blessed to have some really talented players (and genuine good guys) on our team. Our owners have done a great job bringing together all the pieces we need to be successful - now we're just working to grow together as a team both on and off the court."
"It's an adjustment playing against older players," commented Mutcherson. "Players are much more experienced and savvy. I definitely feel like a freshman physically and mentally again. I am having fun though, a good amount of our teammates speak English and our team is currently second in the league. My goal is to get better everyday, win the Cup, and see what doors if any open up from there."
In addition to playing, Dahms is an assistant coach with the Admirals Elite, an offshoot of the Admirals Basketball Academy, a Christian organization in Chisinau concerned with holistic development of Moldovan basketball players.
LINKS (some stories will need translation):
Logan Dahms Moldova blog: http://eurosteppin.blogspot.com/
Eurobasket website (Moldovan National Leage): http://basketball.eurobasket.com/Moldova/news/Divizia_Nationala_Round_6_results/345544
News piece on MC final game vs. Cahul: http://protv.md/stiri/sport/gama-cahul-a-cucerit-o-noua-cupa-a-moldovei-cum-si-a-invins-vesnica---261741.html
News piece on MC semifinal game vs. Argo (with Mutcherson interview): http://www.publika.md/premiera-rosbie-mutcherson-a-devenit-primul-baschetbalist-de-culoare-care-evolueaza-la-o-echipa-din-moldova_1746861.html
Building Bridges camp 2 (picture with Ambassador): http://diez.md/2014/01/02/foto-40-de-tineri-din-tara-vor-participa-la-o-tabara-de-baschet/?fb_action_ids=10153618576700408&fb_action_types=og.likes
Logan Dahms news piece: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qi7un0xc7SM
News piece of UASM game: http://moldovasport.md/ro/news/dahms-logan-entuziasmat-c-evolueaz-pentru-donbasket-usm-video
UASM recap: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8zQXc2ovTHY
Logan Dahms and Mike Grinder news piece: http://tv7.md/ro/news/in-campionatul-molodvei-vor-evolua-primii-baschetbalisti-americani-si-un-antrenor-29244.html
News piece on "American Invasion:" http://www.publika.md/americanii-au-invadat-baschetul-din-moldova_1685861.html