“Talking about gold is not what concerns us.”

“Talking about gold is not what concerns us.”

Canada is asking for more Jordi Fernandez And his children in the busiest summer for the Badalona coach, without having time to raise his head. The Catalan is taking a break from the arduous task of rebuilding the club Brooklyn Nets After his appointment Coach The New York team, but to wear the stripes of the Canadian coach, whom the country trusts to achieve an Olympic medal at the Olympic Games. Paris After the World Cup bronze.

“I'm busy, but very busy,” he admitted after the first training session. Canada With a smile, Jordi is busy but happy at the same time, grateful for the honor of having two high-profile jobs.

“I didn't get bored, I had a lot of work and things to organise, but everything is positive, there is nothing that generates negative stress for me. It is work, you have to do it day by day, think about tomorrow, don't go beyond that, otherwise it can affect you mentally. I came to enjoy the group, it is a unique experience, and from now on, I don't think about the first game, but I think about tomorrow's training and improving tomorrow,” the Catalan told MD.

With this repetitive yet realistic philosophy of everyday life — and increasingly more so in basketball — Gordy tries to mitigate the burden of expectations he knows his players will have. After winning its first World Cup medal in history and stealing the bronze from the United States, Canada is no longer The sleeping giant Who was postponing his awakening.

The Canadian is a solid rookie pick, and a proven force in the NBA between his abundance of talent and how he beat the metal last year. And the demand increases when Jamal Murray joins the cause to form a duo of point guards Shai Gilgeous-Alexander Which can be devastating and with a great youth season Andrew Nembhard And Zach Eddythe dominant 2.24 giant who was just drafted by the Grizzlies of Ja Morant and Santi Aldama at No. 9.

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Even though the Golden State Warriors just left Canada Andrew Wiggins In the news that witnessed yesterday the beginning of the preparations of the North American team.

“I feel sorry for him,” Jordi Fernandez said when asked by Canadian media. “He wanted to be here, but this is something that is not in our hands.” “We don't like it, we respect it. We have to turn the page. I have a lot of respect for the Warriors, they mind their own business,” the coach added. Badalona.

Leonard Miller, The Minnesota Timberwolves G-League player who played most of his time in his first NBA season will replace Wiggins. In any case, the absence of the 2022 NBA champion with Golden State will give the Catalans one less headache when it comes to forming the final roster. As many as 11 players from the world's best league are among the 20 players who started the season. Training camp.

“We don't like it, we respect it. We have to turn the page.”

Jordi Fernandez, about Wiggins' absence

Attacking dogs like a villain Dillon Brooks, Loughwintz Dort And Nikhil Alexander Walker They are licking their lips in a FIBA ​​friendly with defensive intensity and we should also mention names like RJ Barrett and Kelly Olynyk. But Canada also has a few ACB players Like Kim Birch (Girona), Thomas Scroop (Monbus Obradoiro), Trey Bell Hines (Casademont Zaragoza), and Melvin Ejim (Unicaja), it is a blessing to help NBA stars make the always difficult transition to FIBA.

Jordi Fernandez admitted that gold was a dream, but the Catalan thought deeply about the goal of Canada, Spain's potential competitor in the Olympic Games.

“I think the expectations from outside the group are good. What they are doing is promoting Canadian basketball, but we have our own internal expectations within the group. Talking about gold for us is not the important thing, that's just the result. “For us, the important thing is the process and the day-to-day, and how we Handling the first game,” the first NBA coach born in Spain explained to MD.

Murray and Gilgeous-Alexander are a classy pair for Canada

Nate Billings/LaPress

“For people outside of Canada to talk about how positive a strong team is, that cannot affect us and cannot make us adapt. “You have to keep working and be hungry, and I think that is the most important thing,” warns Jordi Fernandez.

The Canadian team is in Group A and only Australia is known as an opponent, as the other competitors will come from the pre-Olympic stage in Piraeus (Greece) and Valencia. Slovenia Luka Doncic And Greece Giannis AntetokounmpoThey aim to compete for first place, while the second candidate is Spain, which Canada has already eliminated in the World Cup.

Another advantage for the North American team compared to last year is that the group of players now knows Jordi Fernandez and what he wants better. The Catalan was appointed as the new coach less than two months before the start of the World Cup last summer, and despite that he managed to assemble a group that made history for the country.

“Defensively we can improve, we were the 11th team in defence, but we have the talent to be in the top three. It was my fault, I made some players play too many minutes. Offensively, we were the best team in the World Cup, but that doesn't mean anything.” “One thing, we have to do it again, and there are things we can still improve.” His coaching staff. Boniface Ndong.

Thanks to Fernandes and another Spaniard like him Victor Lapinia, Canadian women's coach Canada will field two major teams in the Olympics for the first time since 2000. The women's team has never won a medal while the men's team last won a black-and-white medal in 1936.

Canada, the foreign country with the most NBA players with 26 players last season, is one of the strongest alternatives to the powerful. Team USAThe team will face a friendly match in Las Vegas on July 10. The Canadian team could take the step to the next level if they can match what could be an impressive goalkeeping duo with Gilgeous-Alexander and Murray.

The theory is that the Thunder player can have more possession of the ball after leading Canada last year and the second player can move more to the side of the ball as he already does in Denver with Nikola Jokic.

“I think they will eventually teach us what is best for the team,” says the first. Sacramento Kings.

“We have to let them play, be comfortable, and at the end of the day what we know is that we have two players who, once things get tough, will be able to take the game forward and that is important.” They do what's best for the team.” The block. “From here, they will teach us and give us the easy solution, we have to be from the outside and watch how they develop,” explains Jordi, who is growing faster and faster and helping the emerging Canadian team figure out some things. border Which still seems far away.

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Oliver Walton

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