A very interesting interview on her official website Monaco granted by Eli Okobowho mentioned, among other things, his injury, but also how he has bonded with the rest of the Monegasque region.
At the same time, he also talked about the upcoming game against Anatolou Efes, pointing out that the Turks play very high level basketball.
Eli Okobo’s statements:
First of all how is your ankle after Sunday’s game against Gravelin?
“The ankle is fine. I had an ultrasound and it’s nothing serious and I’m going to have an MRI just to be sure. If everything goes well, I will definitely be there to face Anadolu on Thursday.”
What memory do you have of this Eurobasket with France?
“Good memory necessarily with this silver medal even if we have regrets about the final. It was a great experience to compete against the best European players with many stars. The level of basketball is very high. We take all this into account and gather experience to continue to progress.”
How did you experience this move to Monaco and how did joining the team go?
“It was a bit difficult for me not to be able to prepare with everyone. I was still able to chat with the kids when I was with the national team. I was very well received and integrated by everyone. We are still looking in the game for each other to progress and have that cohesion that we want. I get on well with all the players and I really like the systems.”
With Lloyd, James and Strazel you are four players on the perimeter. How is this relationship going?
“Very well. We do everything for the good of the collective and that’s what you need to win, to be a team. Between the 4 of us, the partnership is good and we should be able to manage the game. We make sure everyone does what they want on the floor, bringing their maximum. This choice is important, but above all, the team as a whole matters. Everyone can contribute through their abilities. We all have to be at 100% to be the most competitive.
After three games, I get the impression that you have been a perfect fit with this team…
“Once I arrived, I was able to watch the training sessions, talk to the coaches and the players to really understand the systems so that I can integrate myself into the game and the pitch as much as I need to. Physically I wasn’t late, since I was at the same time as France, which also helped me. Everyone is on the same page and we are doing everything to make it work as well as possible.”
5 wins in 5 games… How do you feel about this start to the season so far?
“I think it’s good, we’re in the right rhythm. And on top of that, we still have a lot of work to do and a lot of room for improvement. We need to show more regularity on the court, like this last match against Gravelin. We can’t afford that in the Euroleague, because it could be fatal for us. We want to move up and we are working hard to get there. There will be ups and downs for sure in the season. It’s up to us to always stay united throughout this process.”
A quick word about Saša Obradovic and his work?
“He’s very competitive, he wants to win and he wants us to be in the best possible position to be ready for every game. The work is very serious and we are all focused on what is expected of us. The goal is continuous progress.”
Efes arrives on Thursday at Gaston-Médecin. What inspires you about this duel?
“It will be intense as we know, like all Euroleague matches this season. It is a very competitive format that plays at a very high level of basketball. We are preparing seriously and we should play like we have done since the beginning of this year.
If we manage to get this first home game in the Euroleague, it would be very good for us. Every match is hard to win and we have to put everything in place to come out victorious. Defend hard not to give away easy baskets, drop back, find your teammates, communicate. They have strong guards and there will be a real battle at every position.”