Credit: Virtus Bologna
Credit Virtus Bologna

Sergio Scariolo, the new head coach of Virtus Bologna, spoke to the media on Friday morning to address the start of the pre-season for the black & white team. The former assistant coach of the Toronto Raptors expressed his excitement regarding a new adventure with the Italian team.

Milos Teodosic

Milos  Teodosic
Position: PG
Age: 34
Height: 195 cm
Weight: 87 kg
Birth place: Serbia

"I have a lot of energy and I'm really excited to start this new adventure. This is a new project and we're gonna have an exciting roster. We're going to have one of the youngest backcourts in the world with Pajola and Mannion so we need to have a little bit patient with them. Mannion is a really talented player but he's still progressing, so it's important to not put too much pressure on him," coach Scariolo said.

One of the main focuses of the press conference was the addition of Nico Mannion, who had a great summer with the Italian NT. Scariolo explained that Mannion was a main target for the club since the beginning of the summer.

"Nico was one of the first names that we have considered for the club. Of course, as you know, we also had contacts with Chris Chiozza for that role, a player who might get an Italian passport in the future. In the beginning, Nico wasn't willing to join us and that's normal, he's a guy who grew up in the USA and he wanted to stay there, following his path in the NBA. So for a moment, we kept that possibility on hold," Scariolo recalled the negotiation process. "When Nico decided to refuse the two-way contract offer from the Warriors because he believed he was worth more than that, we activated again that possibility and we were able to strike a deal with him. And because life can be interesting at times, Warriors offered that two-way contract to Chiozza, the other guy that we were negotiating with."

Scariolo also stated that he did not like the new EuroCup competition system. "I'm not a great fan of the new format, especially regarding the phase after the first group but I don't think I'm the only one who's not fully satisfied with this kind of format. This new project at Virtus is not on a one-year term, though, so we cannot put too much pressure on the second phase, in which a single loss can send us home. If we want to succeed we have to be smart and we have to be versatile."

"Milos Teodosic is an artist and we want to put him in the best position to express his art in the best way possible, for this reason having both Pajola and Mannion will help us take away from Milos some offensive load and let him express his game," coach Scariolo said about the Serbian star, who extended his contract with Virtus this summer.

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