Friday, June 2, 2023

«Unicaja has brutal possibilities, it has everything to get back to where it was»

Ibon Navarro is one of the proper names in the preview of the game that this Saturday they play in the Martin Carpena the Unibox and the baskoniacorresponding to day 31 of the regular phase of the Endes Leaguea. The coach from Vitoria has granted an interview to News Journal from Alava in which he analyzed, among other things, the reasons for his signing in the middle of the season by the Los Guindos team, he also reveals that he does not feel comfortable with the type of squad that has been found to train in Malaga «with players I’m not used to having» and has confirmed that his intention is to stay next season at the head of the green bench.

Navarro explains how his signing took place, last February. “He had been four years in AndorraI was well settled there, with a very integrated family and the approach I had when I left the MoraBanc It was to recharge my batteries, move to go to people, watch training and see how other coaches worked. To recycle myself, in short, which is something that has to be done from time to time, but the opportunity arose to come to Unicajaevidentlynot in the best conditionbecause if not, it is not the opportunity that appears to you if the equipment does not have problems, but i took it and here i am».

The coach from Alava, accustomed to training in Andorra very athletic and very physical teams, reveals something that is also not a surprise: «Unicaja is not the type of team with which I feel most comfortable, but for me it was an opportunity to improve, readjust and try new things, With a type of player that I am not used to having in recent years and it was an opportunity that I had to take. We are at that point where I have to adapt to them and they also have to make the effort to adapt to doing things a little differently. In Malaga the club was not going through its best moment. The results were not being the best.

Navarro is shown happy to have had a good run of results that have made the team climb positions in the table, although it has not been until reaching the coveted zone of the play off. Above all, he is happy because the first two games at home were agonizing defeats against real Madrid Y Murcia and the team knew how to react.

“Having won one of those two gamesespecially if it had been Murcia, our situation would have been different. We would be talking about being almost in playoff positions. The best thing is that the team was able to go to Santiago and win. from going to Fuenlabrada and win out of 20, take advantage of Bilbao with the solvency that we did… Oddly enough, at this point not being worried about relegation as it was in the League is good. And it is that when I got here, Unicaja had the same victories as AndorrOh, there were seven. Thanks to the six games we’ve played, it gives you peace of mind. Although it seems little, it gives you peace of mind, since the descent was a real threat when I arrived. In any case, it is clear that we are a long way from where the club should be. That is why I say that I believe more in changes based on day-to-day work than in immediate results. To think that we were going to win real Madrid Y Murcia is not real if that is not accompanied by a job that generates new habits and a different way of doing things. It is what we were looking for, “explains the man from Vitoria.

At the moment there is no certainty that Navarro will continue to be Unicaja’s coach next season, although he has signed an extension clause in his contract. The coach trusts in being able to continue in Malaga. «The reason for accepting Unicaja’s offer is precisely because it was a project, not in the short term of coming, helping them and leaving, but in the long term. To create something for the future. Obviously with what I’ve seen, I think the club has brutal possibilities. An overturned city, a fantastic pavilion… It has everything to be where it was. Now what you have to do is get it right and do things right. The level of the League demands a lot from you and doesn’t let you make mistakes and I would like to continue”, he revealed.

Regarding this Saturday’s game against one of his former teamsNavarro will leave sentimentality aside. «I’ve been playing against Baskonia for seven years as head coach and this year will be the third match that I have to play against them. Let’s see it’s always nice, but it’s also true that there are fewer and fewer players with whom I coincided, Tadas remains, and some of the coaching staff. yes with Neven I have a very good relationship and we will give each other a hug as we always do, but as soon as the match starts, we will try to compete as best we can and try to win».

Ibon expect the best Baskonia version possible this Saturday at the Sport’s palace. “Baskonia, now focused on a single competition, is much more dangerous. As it happens to all the teams of Euroleague. From the break of the Copa del Rey is different. At the level of chemistry, of the role of its players, much calmer. It is a very difficult team to win. They play a very simple basketball, to generate advantages, to punish you with open shots and they have a player like wade baldwin, of a higher level, both physically and talented. It controls the game, it attracts the defenses a lot and now it is a very complicated team for any rival”, concluded the typesetter technician.


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