|2007 was the most productive season for Delisha Milton-Jones in the EuroLeague Women. She averaged 20.8 points per game and led Ros Casares to the Final, where they lost to Sparta&K |
By Paul Nilsen
A delighted and proud Delisha Milton-Jones has described passing the 2,500 points barrier in the EuroLeague Women as ‘monumental'.
Speaking in the wake of her achievement which came during Wednesday's USK Prague game against Uni Seat Gyor, she was quick to reflect on the tireless work which has went into making it past a quite stunning landmark.
"Moments like these assure oneself that all the sacrifices and countless hours in the gym, training to improve your skills to become more versatile, wasn't done in vain" explained the forward.
"I thank God for the ability and health to do what's been done.
Milton-Jones follows in the footsteps of Belgium international Ann Wauters (3,176 points currently) retired Lithuanian 'executioner' Jurgita Streimikyte (3,087) and the late legendary Malgorzata Dydek (2,787).
She becomes consequently the first non-European to write such a wonderful line in the history books.
"Achieving the 2,500 point mark is definitely a monumental moment for me in my European career.
"Having the luxury of playing alongside some of the games greatest players has helped tremendously.
"Other landmarks I can recall are winning titles and participating in the EuroLeague Women Final Four for several different clubs. I think that's pretty cool and difficult to do - especially for a foreigner," the American player admitted.
Despite registering such a wonderful line in the history books, Milton-Jones had no idea heading into the game with Uni Seat Gyor that she was on the verge of a personal high and one which will no doubt be subject of congratulations from many of her peers.
"I had no idea what so ever that I was close to making history in the world of European basketball," she revealed.
|The late Malgorzata Dydek is third on the EuroLeague Women all-time scorers list, just ahead of Milton-Jones, with 2,787 points|
"If it weren't for the USK General Manager Marek Kucera presenting me with flowers after the game, I wouldn't have known a thing. Thank God for media releases!"
"I'm not sure of what moment in the game it occurred but I'm hoping it was one worthy of the highlight reel!
"With further thought, it was probably a free-throw attempt seeing how physical the game was that night and how often I frequented the free throw line!
"Especially since our General Manager told me at practice this morning that all I needed to reach the mark was four points, so it definitely happened early in the game!"
Of course pouring in 2,500 points in an elite level competition takes dedication but above anything else, longevity - a fact certainly not lost on Milton-Jones.
"I've been able to play at this level for so long because I take a lot of pride in taking care of myself.
"I love the fact that I can call myself a professional athlete and the best way to pay homage to the game is to be at my best at all times.
"Another driving force is my truly natural love of the game and the competitiveness it brings. I live for it!
"My secret to longevity has been a number of factors. They include things such as taking vitamins and minerals daily, eating a healthy diet, yoga and constantly working on the weaknesses I find in my body."
When asked to recall where it all started, Milton-Jones could not help laughing: "I think my first basket in EuroLeague Women play was during my tenure playing in Italy but since I didn't have a jump-shot back then, I'm guessing it was a Hakeem Olajuwan-esque post move!"