Credit: FIBA
Credit FIBA

It's been eight days that the news of Stevan Jelovac's passing shook the basketball world.

2-pointers this season

Points made: 18,8
Accuracy: 47,8%
Place in standings: 19
Record max: 23
Record min: 16
Most made 2FGs: Ivan Buva

The Serbian forward left an indelible mark not only on the court but also in the hearts and minds of the people he was associated with. The people of Rytas Vilnius were among them.

Jelovac was a beloved figure in Vilnius where he played during the 2013-14 season. The FIBA Basketball Champions League game hosted in the Lithuanian capital featuring Rytas and Oldenburg did not just include one minute of silence to honor the memory of the departed athlete.

Credit FIBA

When the presenter of the arena read a nice farewell letter that Rytas center Ivan Buva wrote for his friend Stevan Jelovac, players, staff and many fans of the home team couldn't hold back their tears.

Jelovac and Buva were teammates at Turkish side Gaziantep in the 2019-20 campaign.

The letter, written by the 30-year-old Croat, read:

"Brate, these days leagues all over Europe are remembering the player you were, they are showing your highlights. But I don’t want to do that.

You were so much more than a basketball player. You were a son, brother, husband, a friend… To many of those closest to you you meant the world. I will never forget the love you had towards your family, the bond you shared with your sister, the respect you had for your parents, and your loyalty to your friends.

Your character was an inspiration and I know people whose lives you touched will always remember that. I promise to never forget you, maybe just the part how you used to always beat me in shooting games.

Rest in peace Stevo, I love you."

Before tip-off, Buva received the Champions League November MVP award.

Credit FIBA
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Stevan Jelovac

Stevan  Jelovac
Stevan  Jelovac
MIN: 31.63
PTS: 16 (51.52%)
REB: 4.5
As: 0
ST: 1
BL: 0
TO: 1
GM: 2