By Eurohoops team / email@example.com
Pablo Laso returns to the… crime scene this weekend in Vitoria-Gasteiz, the place where he was born, raised and shaped as a basketball player. He will make his return to his hometown with hopes to seize yet another trophy with Real Madrid.
“I wish there was a secret to it, so I would keep it and go to the Final Four every year! But there are no secrets I am afraid, he tells EuroLeague.net. “To me, the first practice of the season in September is as important as the one before the EuroLeague final. Every year is like this. You have to get your team ready and it makes me happy because I have been a basketball person since I was a little kid. I truly feel that I have the best job that I could have and I am working for one of the best clubs in the world. If you get those things together, you are very proud of reaching that goal six times in eight years. I am sure that when I got here many people thought that I would not be in Real Madrid for eight years because it’s very difficult for a coach to stay that long on the same club. But I don’t think about that, I just look ahead to tomorrow.”
Last season, Real overcame many injuries to reach the Final Four. But does having a relatively healthier season make a team stronger? Coach Laso explains the hard times Real has been through.
“Every year is different. It’s true that last year it was unbelievable to the point when I got to practice and team doctors told me ‘okay, eight guys cannot practice today.’ So it was a very tough year. We had long- and short-term injuries, people in and out all the time… It was difficult, but I think it made us stronger during the year to arrive at the last month of the season in the right position where everybody was healthy and ready to play. We had Campazzo out, Sergio for a few months, of course… But everybody helped a lot to achieve a championship. This year is different but we also had problems. Sometimes, from the outside, it seems that problems are just the injuries, but there are other kinds of problems: defeats, trips, good or bad games… But you have to learn from everything and be ready to play hard together and achieve those goals. Right now I feel that my team is having a great year and has been competitive from the beginning, ready to play against any team. And that’s why we play in the Final Four against the three best teams in Europe. Arriving at the Final Four cannot be the work of a single player, coach or decision. It’s the result of a year of work and I am proud that we get to Vitoria with confidence and the feeling that we can beat anyone, but also that anyone can beat us.”
Read the rest of the story on euroleague.net.