Basketballer’s community aim

Basketball player Dejan ‘DJ’ Vasiljevic. (Supplied/NBL).

By Alesha Capone

Professional basketball player Dejan ‘DJ’ Vasiljevic will launch a basketball academy at his former school this year, to give back to the community.

The 3J Academy will open on Tuesday, January 25 at Good News Lutheran College in Tarneit.

Vasiljevic, who plays for the Sydney Kings in the NBL, attended Good News as a youngster.

His sister Ivana Vasiljevic, who plays NBL1 for Diamond Valley in Victoria, also attended the school.

Vasiljevic said Good News has a “special place” in both his and his sister’s hearts, as that is where they began playing basketball.

“All we want to do is to give back to where it all started for us and that’s why Good News will forever be home for the both of us,” Vasiljevic said,

Ivana will be the academy’s main coach to start off with, because Vasiljevic’s NBL commitments will keep him interstate until about April-May.

The 3J Academy, for young people aged between 10 to 18 years old, will have the slogan “Inspire today”.

“The reason for the academy is because I believe no one from the western suburbs, who has made it in the pros, have given back to where it all started,” Vasiljvec said.

Vasiljvec said that once his NBL season is over, he will take over as the 3J academy’s main coach, with the help of Ivana.

He said he would look to expand the coaching department if he decides to play overseas in the NBA or Europe, post-2022.

“The 3J Academy has signed a one-year basic contract with Good News Lutheran College and we will see how things pan out during the year,” he said.

“If we see that the academy is going like we planned we will continue, but our goal is to expand it to an even bigger part of the western suburbs.”

Vasiljvec said his ultimate vision was to collaborate with Wyndham council to build a new basketball stadium in the area, which offers an academy similar to the Australian Institute of Sport.

Details:,, @3jbydjbrand on Instagram.