Nathan Jawai says he’s happy and excited. After playing in the first friendly of the preseason on Saturday, he spoke in his first official press conference at the Palau Blaugrana about the experience he hopes to gain at his new club, and what he hopes to learn from teaming up with Ante Tomic and Erazem Lorbek. “This is an opportunity for me. I am coming into a team with a long tradition of winning” he said at an event that was also attended by director Joan Bladé and technical secretary Joan Creus.
‘Learning’ and ‘improvement’ were the two words that Nathan Jawai used the most as he explained one of the biggest problems with his game. “Fouls go with my way of playing” he admitted. “I’m an aggressive player, but I do give away a lot of stupid fouls that I shouldn’t be making. It’s not the referees’ fault, they can mistakes too”. He also spoke about how he has been compared to Shaquille O’Neal. “They’ve said that a lot in recent years” he said. “But we are totally different players”.
Creus demands patience
Technical secretary Joan Creus confessed that there have been more changes to the basketball team this summer than there have been in the last two years. “Our intention is always to have a competitive team and we are happy with the way we have strengthened the interior” he said. Apart from Nathan Jawai, the club has also acquired Ante Tomic and Marko Todorovic as replacements for Kosta Perovic, Fran Vázquez and Boniface Ndong. Because of so many changes “we will need a little time to get used to the new players. We’ll need to be patient at first”.
All he had were words of praise for the new Australian arrival. “He’ll play as a centre” he explained. “He’s young but he’s got experience. We have been watching him since the summer leagues two or three years ago, and also over the years in between, when he was playing in Europe. He has the right characteristics that we need: He’s good under the hoop, he’s weighty and he’s got power”.