Sergio Scariolo: "The finals are not pressure, but pure joy!"

Although the Toronto Raptors missed the preliminary title, the chances of Sergio Scariolo's team are still good. In an exclusive interview, the assistant coach talks about his hard work in the NBA, his dual role as Spanish national coach and prospects for the World Cup in China.

basketball.de:
Sergio, you have had so much success in your long coaching career
retracted: champion of Italy, twice champion of Spain, three times
Champion of Europe and two Olympic medals. But at the top of these NBA finals, in
who are you leading with 3-2, now everything?

Sergio Scariolo: It's extremely exciting and a great honor to be able to participate in the final. I am fortunate to have lived many special moments of my career. Because of all these experiences, I do not feel any pressure for everyone in basketball to look at us, but simply enthusiasm and joy in the pure state. I enjoy every moment. Because the NBA Finals are probably the most important event you can participate in.

Bigger than Olympia?

I do not know exactly. It's so hard to compare.
At the Olympics, you have a whole nation behind you. in which
which is now the case in the final. Across Canada pushes us
Inch and push us – it's phenomenal.

And if you were to establish a ranking with the greatest basketball moments of your career …

… then the NBA Finals would be very, very high. (Laughter)

"You have to do a lot in Europe to get a chance in the NBA"

If you have yours
Curriculum vitae and the successes already mentioned, one could even say
You think you are overqualified for the NBA Assistant Coaching position.
How do you see that?

In Europe, you have to be a coach or a player.
have accomplished a lot for the chance to prove yourself in the NBA
to be allowed. I am very happy and grateful to have this reputation throughout the course
the time has worked. Once you have that chance in the NBA, you have to
They certainly use.

You seem like
to make raptors impressively …

(Smiles) For all of us, the situation was exciting when I arrived here in the summer of 2018. After all, it's also for our head coach Nick Nurse [ancienentraîneuradjointdesrapacesdepuiscinqansnotedRouge[zuvorfünfJahreAssistantCoachderRaptorsAnmdRed[ancienentraîneuradjointdesrapacesdepuiscinqansnotedRouge[zuvorfünfJahreAssistantCoachderRaptorsAnmdRed]the very first season in first place.

How are yours?
Cooperation?

Nick is a great person, a great leader and a great team player at the same time. He is very good at delegating tasks and engaging people around him. I am very happy to work with him.

"Throughout the playoffs, I am solely responsible for our offense"

What is your profession?

In our coaching staff, the total of eight people
There are three main assistant coaches. I belong to that. Three
take care of the following parts of our game: the offensive, the
Defense and special situations. We shoot during the season, which
means that I spend about ten to fifteen games in one of these areas
before moving on to the next one.

Which of these three domains
do you prefer to work?

I like to edit everything. But in the crucial
The seasonal phase to be even more efficient, we have the end of the regular season
clear determinations made. That's how I am now during the playoffs
exclusively responsible for our offense. My colleague Adrian Griffin occupies the defense, Nate Bjorkgren special situations.

What does it mean?
Special situations?

For example, there are special moves at the end of the game
Quarter or all at the end of the game.

How stressful and how
You can study intensively the work of an assistant coach in the NBA.
imagine?

If you like the game, it's not so difficult.
Of course, during the regular season, the task is physically demanding because
you travel a day or two and you are always a new opponent
waiting. Each match must be prepared again, each opponent exactly in advance
to be analyzed. In the playoffs, I find it more enjoyable.

Why this?

Because you're still on the same opponent in a playoff series
meet, better prepare for him and also travel less
need. That's why I do not find it so exhausting right now.

What is your second
As a national coach, you have the advantage that many Spaniards
the NBA plays – with Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka both even to the Raptors.
But at the same time, you must also closely follow the European leagues.
Do you have enough time for that anyway?

Of course. Of course, it is vast, but it always depends
of your approach. Some other coaches can see their work
"Only" as a job for which they have some time
want. But for me it's not a job, but for me a passion.
pure, because I like basketball so much. That's why I think it's great
treat this sport as much as possible. I'm not
sole responsible for the Spanish national team …

… but?

Also for other areas of the Spanish Basketball Association. the
I had an example the same day, when the third final match was due
Conversation of 50 minutes with our Spanish junior coordinator. the
These were problems that affect our U20 and U18 teams.

The day of one
NBA final game? Is not it a pure distraction?

On the contrary. Whether it's about the sport, the training of a game or the mere entrance to the room as a spectator, every second of basketball gives me immense joy . Because I like this sport as much as the first day and that I can hardly get enough.

"Germany will fight for the Olympic spots"

After the NBA Finals
you have almost no time to relax, because then the World Cup in China
is at the door. What are your goals for the tournament?

We really want to qualify for the Olympics. It's okay
a very difficult task because we are among the top two teams
from Europe. And so many are competing for these two places
talented teams. Whoever succeeds in the end depends on many factors.

And in fact?

Are your players all healthy? And what about the contractual situation of your players? Therefore, it is still too early to make an accurate forecast.

What opportunities
do you expect the German team?

The team is improving because young players are constantly
evolve. In the team, there are a lot of very talented players, all
in front of Dennis Schröder or Daniel Theis. Therefore, the Germans are around the
Olympic spots are fighting.