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Former farm boy turned NBA prospect

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Former farm boy turned NBA prospect

Hlinason celebrating at the U-20 European Championship

Photo: FIBA Europe

Tryggvi Snær Hlinason shone once again on the basketball court as he outplayed NBA star Jonas Valanciunas yesterday. Visir reports. The Lithuanian had high praise for Hlinason after the match. „He’s really good. He is still young, but has a great size & a lot of potential “. The Icelandic giant, who clocks in at 2.1 6 meters (7 foot 1), had 19 points, 7 rebounds and shot an outstanding 80% from the field. Tryggvi also chipped in with two blocks. He outscored the Lithuanian big man, who plies his trade with the Toronto Raptors in the NBA, comfortably as he had 14 points and 11 rebounds.

The 19-year-old Tryggvi only started playing basketball four years ago with Þór Akureyri. He moved to Akureyri to attend a high school there but beforehand he was a farm help on the family farm Svartarkot. When asked about working a farm, Tryggvi commented: „Man, it never stops. It’s a forever job. You’re always working “. His rise has been meteoric as he has gone through the ranks from the Icelandic U-18 team to the national team itself in only a matter of 40 months. He recently signed a four-year contract with Spanish outfit Valencia who are the current title holders of the ACB division.

He will have a chance to showcase his talents this summer against Europe’s elite at Eurobasket, the European basketball championship. If he makes it to the NBA he will join an elite rank of player from Iceland to have been on the ranks of an NBA team. There have only been two Icelandic players on NBA rosters so far, even though basketball is the second most popular sport in Iceland. Pétur Guðmundsson played for the Lakers and the Spurs amongst others while Jón Arnór Stefánsson was on the roster of the Mavericks.

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