Interview: Osman Ertorer, TrendBasket
The Golden State Warriors handled the Brooklyn Nets with ease in 112-95 win last night. Prior to the game, we spoke to Luis Scola of the Nets on Argentinian National Team, EuroLeague and his future plans.
Let’s start with current events. How is the season going for you so far? As a team, do you expect a higher win ratio after the All-Star break?
Obviously it’s not going as we thought it was going to be but it’s the way it is. We have to find a way to finish the season strong.
You didn’t play for the Spurs – and with Manu Ginobili – but you have had a respectable career here. Who is the best player you’ve ever played alongside in the NBA?
I’ve had the chance to play with a lot of great players. Manu is obviously one of them. [In the NBA], I had the chance to play with Tracy McGrady, Yao Ming, Dikembe Mutombo at the end of his career, Kyle Lowry, Paul George… So, I have played with a lot of good players.
Even though you were drafted in 2002, you waited for 5 years before you came into the NBA. Is this because you wanted to make Baskonia more successful? Or is it just you did not feel ready for the league?
In the first couple of years, I didn’t feel I was ready. They didn’t feel I was ready neither. After that, I really wanted to come but different situations made it a little bit more difficult and we had to wait for a couple of years. We can say that in the first couple of years, I wasn’t ready.
Argentina was known for its football stars but the Golden Generation that you were a part of made a lot of basketball fans around the globe root for Argentina. Also, there are a lot of stories hinting at your strong bonds as teammates, one being Spurs GM R.C. Buford saying, “They’re the best team around.“, after coming across one of your team meals. What was the secret for this friendship?
I don’t know. It’s just about a bunch of young guys who grew up together happening to get along quite well, play different positions and complement each other very well on the court. We happened to win, when other teams were struggling, rebuilding, trying to figure out the next steps. We came in at the right time, were able to do something that everybody thought was impossible.
Many of the players of that generation are now 35 and older but they are still playing at the highest level. Yourself, Manu, Nocioni, even Prigioni, who hung up his boots last month are the examples of this. What makes you stay at that level?
Every case is different, obviously but I think that The Generation not only plays basketball well, but also is very smart off the court. We made right decisions, take care of our bodies and were very smart. I think those paid off.
What are your thoughts about the future of Argentinian basketball? Do you have any plans of taking an administrative role or being the coach of national team in the future?
I don’t think I’m going to coach. But I don’t know [about administrative role].
Are you following EuroLeague? Which teams are your favorites to make it to the Final Four and win it all?
I do follow EuroLeague a little bit, but not too much. Obviously my team is Baskonia, the team I grew up with. I’m rooting for them. I don’t watch it that much to have a championship favorite.