Pau Gasol on Peñarroya’s Barça: “It’s a question of mentality”

Pau Gasol on Peñarroya’s Barça: “It’s a question of mentality”
Pau Gasol on Peñarroya’s Barça: “It’s a question of mentality”

06/07/2024 at 13:35

CEST


Pau Gasol This Saturday, the twentieth edition of its campus, a ‘Pau Gasol Academy by Santander’, which every year adds more followers to its ranks and offers hundreds of boys and girls the opportunity to learn values ​​through sport, came to an end. The Sant Boi native spoke to SPORT minutes before the finals of this tournament to review the latest basketball news in our country, with the national team and Barça as the main protagonists.

PEÑARROYA AND THE ‘NEW’ BARÇA

Gasol, already the greatest basketball player in the history of our country, began to cement his legend at Barça, a team that is now looking to build the foundations of its new project with Joan Peñarroya at the helm. The new Barça coach replaces Roger Grimau on the bench and is already preparing for his first season at the Palau Blaugrana. “I think that’s the first step, to bet and sign a coach you believe in. Let this be the starting point, that the project has continuity, stability and on which you can build. This way you can compete against the best in Europe and surpass them.“This is what Pau said, who just a month ago, at the opening ceremony of this campus, stated that Barça, in the midst of searching for a new coach, should commit to a medium- to long-term project.

“Joan can do this job, the players have to do their part, we will see if other players are brought in who can complement and improve the team. From here we have to get to work from day one with the right mentality and demand from ourselves individually and collectively. It is a question of mentality to make a great team and aspire to win all the titles.” said the former Lakers and Bulls player, two of the NBA teams he played for during his North American adventure.

SPAIN, NOW FROM A DISTANCE

Pau was one of the great pillars of the golden era of the Spanish basketball team. With ‘La Roja’, the Catalan won gold, silver and bronze medals between World Cups, Eurobasket and Olympic Games, an international career that few players can boast. Now, already retired from professional basketball, Gasol watches from a distance as Spain seeks to certify its passage to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games in the Pre-Olympic Games in Valencia. Scariolo’s men will play the semi-finals against Finland this Saturday at 8:30 p.m.

“There are two finals left. The first one is against Finland, which is the one they should focus on. They have a good team, very balanced and balanced. “They have very good players with ambition. We are playing at home, in Valencia, so the chances of going through are high and we will support them from afar. I am excited for them” he said about this duel against the northern European team.

If all goes according to plan, Spain could face the Bahamas in the grand final of this pre-Olympic tournament, a team that has NBA players of the caliber of DeAndre Ayton, Buddy Hield o Eric Gordon. Regarding this possible clash, Pau said: “It’s a dangerous team, with very talented players. They would have to play a great game from start to finish to get the win. In the end, they are also pursuing their Olympic dream and making history for their country. We have to take that into account. I am sure that our players and technical staff will do all the necessary preparation work to face the match with the maximum chance of winning.” Remember that there is only one ticket that gives access to the Paris Olympic Games.

THE CAMPUS, A SUCCESS

Gasol is delighted with his campus and made this clear to SPORT: “Very happy. With a number of boys and girls that has increased a lot this year, a very special edition, the participation of Phil Handy (assistant at Lakers), who has come here for a week to work with them and has imparted a lot of quality. The involvement of coaches like Ponsarnau, Pedro Martínez... top national level coaches.”

“He will also come nowto Felipe Reyes to the finals and a former teammate I had in Portland like Jusuf Nurkic“We will also be here trying to provide a nice experience for the kids. I hope it serves them well, excites them, and they go home happy. It’s a journey of many years, trying to improve it with each edition” said a smiling and excited Pau.

 
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