We have to look forward. We had a good start in the EuroLeague but after that, we had a lot of tough injuries, and now we are trying to find the way to keep winning and play better. The last couple of losses were bad because we were close to winning each of those games. In fact, all of our games were close except for our loss in Vitoria, which was a blowout. We competed in all the other games we lost, but could not get the wins. Still, we are Real Madrid and we need to win. That is the key at the end of the day. We must get back on the positive track, win a couple of games in a row and get going. We have a great team that needs to go up in the standings. We have a lot of experienced players who won before and know what it takes to win again and how to take care of these situations.
First of all, we know we have to work hard every day in order to feel good during the game. We have a lot of weapons, both on offense and defense. We need to use them when things are tough for us in close games. I believe that if we do, we will be winning again soon. We are not getting crazy about this situation. We know that it's a long season and we have many games ahead for us. Step by step, we have to go back to winning as at the beginning of the season. Also, we will get players back from injury. Hopefully, we will have Jeffery Taylor back soon after four weeks, and then Anthony Randolph. All the players coming back will give us depth, a lot of energy and character. We will be better with a longer rotation. We have 14 great players, all of them here for a reason. We know that we need everybody to be in the best shape to have good results.
Even when he is injured, Sergio Llull is leading by example with his positive energy. If you put your head down, nothing good will come out of that situation. We are trying to have that positive energy. We go to practice in the morning and put on some music to make the day better. If you wonder who plays music in the locker room, it is usually Luka Doncic. Luke puts on his own music, and when he doesn't have control of that, it's Trey Thompkins. He is always with his headphones on. It is unbelievable! I have never seen anyone with his headphones on so much time, listening to his favorite music. It is crazy!
We signed Walter Tavares like a month ago or so. I played with Rudy Gobert for three years so he is my only former teammates as tall as Walter, who is huge, especially his hands! I was shocked at his first practice when I saw him take the ball in his hand. I told him: "It must be hard playing with such a small ball, right?" and he was laughing about it. He is very tall but has great moves in the paint and good abilities. He is also a great dude: always calm, always smiling, bringing positive energy. We have a lot of big men injured and it was great to add him. It is funny to see Walter and Facu (Campazzo) together on the court, close to each other. They may be different players but they have a lot in common; both are talented, great players and have character. Facu is like a bull, so strong, with a strong mentality, who will not complain about anything. He has the same mentality as Andres Nocioni, Argentinean style. He has a similar character to "Chapu".
As for playing for Real Madrid and living in Madrid, what can I say? I am smiling every day! People notice that I am always smiling at practice, because this is how you should enjoy life. It is just the way I am feeling. For the last two weeks, I have been a bit down because of our losses, and also because I know we can do better than this. Still, that does not affect the fact that I am truly happy in this club. When we have free time, I can go to Madrid and enjoy the city. They have great monuments and great restaurants everywhere; it's amazing! This is the first time in my career that I live in such a big city and I am really enjoying it.
Of course, I have been to some football games at Santiago Bernabeu. My first visit was 10 days after I arrived in Madrid, and now I am going every chance I get. I am going to the Champions League game against Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday, and I cannot wait for the big, big games in the Champions League. The football and basketball players train in the same sports complex, Ciudad del Real Madrid, which is a like residence for players, and when we go for lunch, we see them a lot. They have been really nice to us, they don't behave like superstars, more like regular, normal people. For instance, they usually come and introduce themselves, and I am happy because I didn't know Karim Benzema, the French player, and now I do! It is great to have them around.
We have a EuroLeague Clasico in two weeks time and before that, we play on the road against Olympiacos. Of course, we know how the EuroLeague is. We took a bad step by losing at home against Crvena Zvezda, so we have to step up and win on the road. When you lose one at home, you immediately need to win one on the road. We know Olympiacos is in great shape and they always play aggressively. We have the kind of team that can win over there, though. In the EuroLeague, from the beginning of the season, we saw that any team can beat any other. We are ready for a tough game and prepared well for a week. We have to learn from every game even when we had some bad experiences in the last two weeks. We have to confirm that we understood what happened and find the way to win.
Until the next time, good luck and Hala Madrid!