Juancho Hernangómez: “It has been a pretty hard year, a bit of a roller coaster”


The Spanish basketball player Juancho Hernangómez has described his first year at Panathinaikos BC as “quite hard” and “a bit of a roller coaster”, having conquered the Euroleague and the Greek League, thus gaining morale for the Pre-Olympic Tournament that he will play with the national team, July 2 to 7, at the Fuente de San Luis Pavilion (Valencia).

“Very happy, the truth is that very happy. It has been quite a hard year, a bit of a roller coaster year; but enjoying happy moments, learning a lot from difficult moments and injuries. I value the season very very positively, also about everything for the titles, for winning from 0-2 against Olympiacos, which had never been done there and the truth is that it has been a historic season,” said Hernangómez from the Golden Triangle Sports Center (Madrid).

Thus, he praised Lorenzo Brown and his possible signing for the ‘PAO’. “Well, one more plus. He is a great player, he has been one of the best bases this season. We already played against him in the ‘play-off’, he made us a ‘son’ every game and the truth is that I am very very happy that he comes because we won the European Championship with him, I played very well with him and he is a great player. So the more great players he comes, the better,” Hernangómez declared, thinking about both the Spanish team and his club.

Furthermore, the power forward was satisfied with his performance throughout this season. “Honestly, I am very proud of myself, of how I have faced all the moments, how I have continued to fight and the truth is that that is why I am quite proud,” he insisted on the matter.

After the successes with the green team of Athens, Hernangómez is already training with the Spanish team under the command of Sergio Scariolo. “These days are a lot of load, a lot of technical load, a lot of physical load. For me after a few days of vacation, it is costing me a little more, but the truth is that I see the group quite well, quite motivated and all together for the this great objective,” he summarized.

“There is always pressure in any championship, in any game we play with Spain. But I think we have to live it with enthusiasm, enthusiasm too and the opportunity to do it at home. Let the fans come, let them enjoy the fact that we all play at home and that together we can achieve this great objective, which I believe has never been done,” he said about that future Pre-Olympic in La Fonteta.

Asked what Scariolo had asked of them in these first days of training, Hernangómez responded that “tactically, above all, take care of the ball, put good blocks, play physical.” “We know that we don’t have the talent of other years, or of past teams, so we have to play… Defense is a great value for us and, from there, run and play aggressively,” argued the power forward.

In this sense, he downplayed the difference in time on the field of some or others with their respective clubs: “We have also played minutes and there are many games during the season. This season has been quite long. But in the end when you come with the national team “It’s adapting to the group, adapting to what the group needs.”

“There are moments or summers when you have to play more and there are moments when you have to play less, but always by and for the team. And I think this is our secret: fight, leave egos aside and fight for the team, to achieve the goals.” objectives, to get the medals. And I think that has been the philosophy that the most veterans, the ‘Families’ of previous seasons, have instilled in us and what we are going to try to instill in the young people,” concluded Hernangómez.