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Paulius Jankūnas
Paulius Jankunas1.2009-07-31.jpg
Position Power Forward
Height 6 ft 9 in (2.06 m)
Weight 240 lb (110 kg)
League Euroleague
Baltic League
Lithuanian League
Team BC Khimki
Number 13
Born April 29, 1984 (1984-04-29) (age 25)
Kaunas, Lithuanian SSR, USSR
Nationality Lithuania Lithuanian
Pro career 2003–present
Awards 2003 LKAL MVP
2004 Lithuanian League All-Star
2006 Baltic League All-Star
2009 Baltic League MVP

Paulius Jankūnas (born April 29, 1984) is a Lithuanian professional basketball player in the Euroleague, the Baltic League and the Lithuanian League with the Žalgiris. He is also a member of the Lithuanian national team. He plays the power forward position.

Contents

Early years

Jankūnas played two seasons with the LKKA-Žalgiris and led them to a LKAL (Lithuanian League 2nd Division) title in 2003 and was named the MVP after averaging 20.0 points, 12.3 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per game.

He competed at the Reebok Eurocamp in Treviso in 2003.[1]

Pro career

Jankūnas made his pro debut with the Žalgiris in the 2003-04 season. When asked about playing with European basketball legend Arvydas Sabonis in his rookie season, Jankūnas responded: "No doubt it was the most remarkable season. It was fantastic to play with Arvydas Sabonis. I was very young and it was very exciting. In the beginning, I was little bit afraid and uncomfortable, but later things got easy and I learned a lot from him. When I was a kid, I used to watch him playing on TV and never dared to dream that I would be playing with Arvydas Sabonis. One day I woke up and Sabonis was my teammate. It was great. He had huge experience and gave a lot of advice to me. It was big honor to play with him and I hope I learned something from Sabonis."[2]

He was originally an early entry candidate for the 2005 NBA Draft before withdrawing his name from consideration.

Jankūnas helped the Žalgiris win two Baltic League titles in 2005 and 2008, four Lithuanian League titles in 2004, 2005, 2007 and 2008 and two Lithuanian Cups in 2007 and 2008.

He averaged 13.8 points and 8.0 rebounds in the 2008-09 Euroleague season and scored a season-high 23 points in a win against the Asseco Prokom Sopot on December 18th, 2008.[3] However, the Žalgiris finished with a 2-8 record and did not qualify to the Top 16.[4]

Jankūnas was named the 2009 Baltic League MVP after averaging 15.4 points and 7.7 rebounds.[5]

Jankūnas is currently the captain of the team.[6]

Lithuanian national team

Medal record
Competitor for  Lithuania
FIBA European Championship
Bronze 2007 Spain Lithuania

Jankūnas played at the 2003 World U-19 Championship where the Lithuanians won silver medals.

Jankūnas led the 2004 European U-20 Championship in rebounding (12.3 rpg) in addition to posting 12.5 points per game. He led Lithuania to a 2005 World U-21 Championship title.[7] He averaged 12.8 points and 8.6 rebounds per game.

Jankūnas was a member of the Lithuania national team that won fifth place in the 2005 European Championship. He averaged 8.2 points and 4.0 rebounds.

He also helped the Lithuanians win a bronze medal at the 2007 European Championship.

Player profile

A young and athletic 6 ft. 9 in. power forward, Jankūnas is a master in rebounding and scoring. He prefers inside scoring and often provokes fouls from opposing team's players.

Personal

Jankūnas married to wife, Ieva, in the summer of 2007.[8]

References

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