Glasser ready for his next career chapter

Glasser ready for his next career chapter

Up until now Derek Glasser had only heard stories of how beautiful Israel is. Starting next month he will get to experience this Middle Eastern country first hand. ASU's outgoing senior point guard signed a one-year contract with Maccabi Haifa of the Israeli Basketball Super League and couldn't be more excited to embark on this unique journey.

"We were looking at a few countries when I was thinking of playing overseas," Glasser said. "Being Jewish we thought playing in Israel was going to be the best situation for my career. It was easy researching everything on the Internet and I got to talk to some guys who played in Israel and in other countries too.

"So many of my friends have been to Israel and had a lot of amazing things to say about it. From what I can tell Haifa is a really nice beach town and one of the nicest cities in Israel."

In the last couple of seasons Maccabi Haifa has been of the elite teams of the Israeli Basketball Super League, recording a 4th place finish last season and losing in the championship finals the year before that.

"I really like where Maccabi Haifa is going," Glasser stated. "They are a young and upcoming team. Their owner is American who knows a lot of basketball in the U.S. and that definitely helped my decision. They have a good coach.

"The style of play there is really a team game, pick and roll sets and not a lot of one on one game. So I feel that this will benefit me. I'm just going there to be a leader and help the team any way I can and I'm excited to get over there and start my career with Haifa."

The 6-1 190 Glasser was a three-year starter for ASU where he played in a school record 131-games (20 of them turnover-free) and shattered ASU's all-time assist record, posting 551 career assists. Glasser averaged 30.2 minutes per game, starting in 104 games, which is fourth-most in ASU's history.

The point guard is the all-time leading free throw shooter at ASU, making 295-of-352 (.838) free throws and is the first ASU player to total more than 1,000 career points (1,028) and 500 assists (551). Glasser finished with 149 career three-pointers, which is ninth all-time at ASU.

During his senior season, Glasser averaged 10.1 points per game, where he led the conference in assists (4.8) and in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.16) with 158 assists and just 73 turnovers in 33 games. Picked 7th in the Pac-10 preseason media poll, the Sun Devils finished the regular season in 2nd place. Their last two losses of the season were in the opening round of the Pac-10 tournament and the NIT.

"It was a good experience and I learned a lot about myself and the game itself," Glasser reflected. "We did have a lot of ups and down as a team, but we stuck together and grinded it out. We exceeded everybody else's expectations but our own."

Just as any American player signed for a foreign team, Glasser will undoubtedly be expected to provide immediate impact for his new club. Nonetheless, the former Sun Devil isn't apprehensive of his chances of succeeding in his new surroundings.

"I don't know if I feel any pressure," Glasser commented. "You're going to experience the natural barriers that you have living in a different country, but I'm excited about playing in Israel because that is the next chapter of my basketball career."

Maccabi Haifa will travel to the United States to play the New Jersey Nets in the first preseason game at the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ on October 3, 2010.

Throughout the Israeli Basketball Super League season Fans can also follow Glasser and his new team on Maccabi Haifa's online 30-minute magazine TV show Inside Israeli Basketball which is aired monthly from November to June.

The Israeli Basketball Super League begins play in October. Maccabi Haifa's games can be watched live or on demand at triangleinternet.tv

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