By Eurohoops team/ firstname.lastname@example.org
Shabazz Napier is not having the best start to the season at the beginning of his chapter with Crvena Zvezda Meridianbet. After some ups and downs, he even suffered a nasal fracture during a EuroLeague Round 8 match against Fenerbahce Beko in Belgrade.
The former Olimpia Milano player got back on the court already in the Round 10 game vs his previous team but with a protective mask. After a big win over Anadolu Efes, Napier admitted he’ll have to wear it for the rest of the season.
“It takes some adapting, but it’s something I have to use and wear. I must not break it again, so I’ll have to wear the mask throughout the entire season. If I break it again, it will be really bad. It’s part of the game, so I have to keep wearing it to avoid having additional problems,” Napier said to Meridian Sport after the win over Anadolu Efes.
The 32-year-old guard is averaging 9.4 points and 2.4 assists per game in the EuroLeague, and it’s clear that he’s not satisfied with his performances in the red and white jersey.
“I’m not playing well. But victory is important; it’s the only thing that matters to me. When you win, nothing else matters,” Napier added. “I will do whatever is necessary for the team. It’s not a problem for me, nor does it bother me. If I’m given a specific task, I will do it. When you have Yago, Teodosic, and Nedovic, it’s much easier for me to play. The only thing that matters to me is winning, and it’s always important to be in the service of the team. I’m happy for the triumph; the guys did an outstanding job.”
Crvena Zvezda is 4-7 in the EuroLeague but sits at the top of the standings in the ABA League with an 8-1 score. The Belgrade club recently had some injury problems, but the situation is improving since only Adama Hanga remains on the sidelines, with Branko Lazic making his return after a couple of weeks in the Anadolu Efes victory.