Thomas van der Mars rules Baltic basketball, takes November MVP honors

Dutch big man Thomas van der Mars has taken the league by storm, proving to be the a mismatch for any opponent. Finally he’s getting more and more recognition for his play, as a terrific month of November has earned the center his first Triobet BBL Player of the Month award.


The University of Portland graduate joined AVIS Rapla in early 2016, after a short stint in Greek club Kavala. Van der Mars didn’t need too much time to get accustomed in his new role, and from the very start of the new season, has shown incredible numbers all over the court.

The 26-year-old averaged 18.7 points this month, while also notching a double-double in every single game to put him at 12.3 rebounds per game. Van der Mars also contributed with 1.7 steals, 1.3 assists and 1.0 block a game. He is currently the league’s third-highest scorer and rebounder, while he comes in at second in overall efficiency.

Not only has Thomas had personal success, but AVIS Rapla has done exceptionally well with the big man supporting a heavy role on both ends of the court. The Estonian club is currently on top of Group A with four wins and two losses and has yet to lose a home game.

Perhaps their most important victory of the month came against Barons kvartals, as the teams share a 4-2 record. For van der Mars, it was both a team, and personal victory, as he battled against one of the top players in the league Denis Krestinin. It was an 86-80 victory for Rapla and the Dutchman had arguably his best game of the month, scoring 23 points and ripping down 12 rebounds. Krestinin was also solid, but his team‘s woes have left him behind in the MVP rankings.

Thomas van der Mars had already notched three Player of the Week awards this season, and will look to continue his dominance after adding a Player of the Month trophy to the cabinet.