Two of Chicago State's best players during the 2008-09 season have decided to follow their professional basketball dreams to faraway places. David Holston (left) is heading to Pinar Karsiyaka in the Turkish Basketball League. Cantrell is playing for BC Odessa in the Ukraine Basketball League.
Holston one was of the most exciting players in college basketball last season. Unfortunately, since he played for the Cougars, very few people on a national stage got to see his pinpoint passing and quick moves. The 5'8" point guard was invited to the Portsmouth Invitational, but his performance there wasn't enough to convince an NBA to overlook Holston's lack of size.
Now Holston will head to Pina Karsiyaka in Izmir, Turkey - more than 5,500 miles away from Chicago. Last season Karsiyaka finished ninth in the Turkish League. Gerald Brown and Mike Benton are two American's that should be able to help Holston adjust. Brown played his collegiate basketball at Pepperdine University and played 33 games for the Phoenix Suns in 1999, so he might be able to give insight to Holston about what it takes to get the elusive phone call to the NBA. Benton - a 6'9" center - attended the College of Charleston and played a year in the D-League before heading abroad.
Holston's ability to get steals might help Pina more than his outstanding outside shooting. The team allowed 2440 points in 30 league games last season - that mark was 5th worst in the league.
Cantrell is part of a BC Odessa squad that is currently .500 overall in league play. Odessa is 4-4. The super-athletic Cantrell joined former St. Louis guard Justin Love in the backcourt on Odessa. Love led the team with 17.3 points per game during the 2008-09 season.
Odessa is more than 5,200 miles away from Chicago. Both Cantrell and Holston are going a long way to follow their dreams.