manuginobili.com | Emanuel Ginobili Official Website | 2010-2011
We're not a Rock and Roll band on their farewell tour
2011-08-02 / by Manu
That anxiety I had to go back to the National Team, that emotion to get together with the guys again, in all honesty only lasted me a day and that's it. The next day my legs were shaking, both my calfs were sore and pain everywhere. I started thinking back and I realized it's been five years since I had my last two a day training sessions like we're having right now with the National Team. We never do two a day in San Antonio and the last time I played for the National Team in 2008, I did a special training session before the Pekin games because I was coming back from an injury. So now i have to get used to this pace and the intensity the coaches demand from these training sessions.
It's always natural that in the first week you get some extra bruises (because we're all a bit clumsy) and strains; that's why we spent quite a bit of time visiting the doctor and physiotherapists. Almost all of us has a little pain here and there. But it makes sense. In about a week this will go away and we're all going to be used to it.
Don't worry. We're not killing each other and we're not going to end up injured. We're all veterans and have enough experience to understand the messages the body sends, and tune the workout as necessary. We're all conscious that a muscular injury right now would set you back five or six days. That would be a problem, without a doubt.
In the morning we do some weight lifting in the gym, after that we do some shooting practice on the court, we go over the tactical part, and on the evening we up the intensity with a game. The idea is to adjust details quickly, specially tactically.
Even though we all know each other well, the system that we play with is well known and we've been using for years, we still need to regain coordination, synchronization and that takes a little while.
Obviously the pick and roll can be a fundamental play in our tactics because we have various specialists in it. Pablo (Prigioni) and Luifa (Scola) played it to perfection for many years in Tau Ceramica; Fabricio (Oberto) and me played it a lot too in San Antonio, but also Pepe (Sánchez) and Carlitos (Delfino) can run it extremely well. I suppose it will be a way to build important offensive weapons.
I also want to share that one aspect that's welcome in this program is the lack of travel overseas. We're not going to waste time traveling and adjusting to the jet lag. We're going to travel a bit but it will be within the country and that's really good. The negative part is that maybe we're going to miss the tranquility of being isolated in some hotel in China or Singapore, all together, building up the team chemistry. This time around we'll have more distractions because people are going to be close by and on the stadiums it's going to be a party every night.
It will be up to us, using our intelligence and experience, not to get caught up in all that. We've to keep our minds on the goal. This isn't a Rock and Roll band farewell tour. We've to get away from the people's excitement. People need to know and understand this.
As far as me personally, I really feel well because I've been working on my fitness for about five weeks in Bahia Blance before starting these sessions. We got together with Jasen and Pepe, and started to do some baseline physical training so we wouldn't start off badly in these first couple of training sessions. Also, having everything approved by the Spurs a year ago, when I told them I wanted to play this qualifier and if we get there, the olympic games, gives me peace of mind. Even though my franchise and the NBA can't really control or tell me anything because we're in the lockout, I'm at ease because we had all this worked out a long time ago. What's going to be little weird is not be able to meet with Gregg Popovich. I found out through the newspapers that's he's coming to Mar del Plata, but the rules are very strict and the penalties very expensive if a management person has a contact with a NBA player. It's ridiculous. Pop will be just a few feet away and we're not going to be able to go eat or even say hello. I don't know how it works with family members, maybe he can talk to them.
Last, I want to remark the outstanding effort my roommate is putting forth to recover from his injury and get to the tournament in great shape. I'm talking about Luis Scola. He's on treatment all day. When he doesn't have an ice pack on his knee, he's doing physical therapy or he goes 40 mins earlier to the gym to work twice as long as any of us. He's putting all he has into it and we all appreciate his effort.