Franklin Bulls GM of Basketball Mika Vukona has made his first key appointment in the role, that will help lead the team in the SalsNBL 2023.
The Bulls have appointed head coach Daniel Sokolovsky, who is part of the coaching team for the Sky Sport New Zealand Breakers.
"Our immediate goals to add to and continue building solid foundations for our Franklin Bulls team, encompassing the Franklin spirit and values.
Franklin and the South Auckland region is a blue chip, hard working area, an area rich and colourful in culture and talent. We were looking for a person experienced and able to genuinely articulate the same vision that mirrored ours and to deliver it in their own personal way.
Daniel was the perfect fit for us and answered these questions. Daniel's experience and thirst to help create a genuine pathway for our next talent and to foster the current talent in Franklin to become successful not only on the court but off it as well is an exciting prospect and we’re eager to start and look forward to our roster taking action in the upcoming season." Says GM of Basketball, Mika Vukona.
Bulls Head Coach Daniel Sokolovsky will begin planning for the squad in the new year and work to put together a roster that fits the Franklin style of play.
“My vision for this team is to assemble a group of people that have the character, competitiveness, consistency, and intrinsic motivation to do the daily work required to prepare ourselves to perform at a level of intensity, physicality, and execution that gives us an opportunity to compete against any opponent, regardless of the stage and circumstances.”
“Most importantly, this group should and will embody what is most important to the Franklin and South Auckland communities. A grit, a workmanlike mentality, relishing being the underdog, eager to outwork, and doing so in a modest but confident fashion - knowing that our success will be a result of the time and work invested. “ Adds Sokolovsky
Sokolovsky, studied at Columbia University in New York, becoming an assistant coach for the
men’s program before moving to Russia for two years assisting the Parma Perm squad in the VTB United League. His coaching experience, around the world, is extensive with stints in China CBA, the Israeli Premier League and the German BBL, before landing his first head coaching job in Slovakia for BKM Lucenec, taking the team to the Finals. This saw him recruited by Mody Maor at the Sky Sport NZ Breakers.
Sokolovsky is excited to help Franklin take the next step and help the club further develop the incredible talent in South Auckland.
“Being named head coach of the Franklin Bulls is an honour and a privilege. This is a relatively young club with high ambitions to both achieve, and, more importantly, to leave an indelible mark on the surrounding community. In that description, I find a perfect match for my mindset as a coach as this juncture in my career. “
“I am eager to help create an environment that breeds high performers, and one that yields consistent success. Simultaneously, year on year, I’ve grown to see how impactful sport can be in the lives of people, young and old. The mission we are undertaking with the Franklin Bulls provides an incredible opportunity for me to merge those two ambitions, and to do this alongside incredible people that care a great deal about their community.
This is a special opportunity, and I can’t wait to get started. Go Bulls!”
Head Coach Daniel Sokolovsky will begin his role in March at the culmination of the Australian NBL season.