After a stellar university basketball career, UBC Thunderbird Doug Plumb has signed a contract to play professionally in Europe.
Plumb, who is from Pitt Meadows and still has family here, will join Zalakerámia ZTE KK of the Nemzeti Bajnokság I/A, the top league in Hungary.
Basketball has been such a huge part of Plumb’s life, and he didn’t want it to be over.
“I had more sleepless nights this year, not knowing what I was going to do,” he admitted.
To be paid to play basketball is a dream for any college player, but most leagues limit the number of import players allowed, and those spots generally go to American players coming out of NCAA programs.
“For a little, skinny white kid from Pitt Meadows to get this experience is pretty rare. I’m excited.”
His new club has won four national titles, with the most recent coming in 2010. It is located in Zalaegerszeg, a city of about 62,000 people.
“I’m very excited to be continuing my career with ZTE KK,” said Plumb. “The organization has a rich history of success and I am looking forward to helping them compete and contend for the Hungarian league title.”
Plumb scored 1326 points in 97 non-conference, regular season and playoff appearances with UBC for an average of 13.7 points a game. He also grabbed 457 rebounds (4.7 per game) over his time with the T-Birds.
This past season, the 6’4” guard was a first team Canada West all-star and a second team CIS All-Canadian, after leading his squad to a conference championship and a berth to the CIS Final Eight in Ottawa. He averaged 14.9 points and 5.2 rebounds a game in his last season.
The 25-year-old has studied psychology. He is hoping to one day join the coaching ranks, and said having professional experience can only help his resume.
Plumb also played college ball with Fraser Valley (CIS) and Minnesota State (NCAA) before becoming a Thunderbird.
“We are thrilled for Doug that he will continue his basketball career as a professional athlete,” said UBC head coach Kevin Hanson. “He has landed on a top team in a great league. He has worked exceptionally hard to get to this stage of his career and we are all very excited for him. We wish him the best as he enters this next stage of his life.”
Plumb joins several other UBC graduates already in the professional ranks. Nathan Yu (Hong Kong), Alex Murphy (Denmark), Matt Rachar (Austria), Kamar Burke and Josh Whyte (both NBL-Canada) are all representing UBC and the CIS in basketball leagues around the world.
“I would like to ride this out as long as I can – keep playing ball, and see the world,” said Plumb. “It doesn’t get any better than that for me.”