Virtus Bologna and Italian NT guard Alessandro Pajola in an interview with Artem Komarov talked about playing beside Milos Teodosic and the winning mentality that Sergio Scariolo is trying to bring to the club.

Alessandro Pajola

Alessandro  Pajola
Alessandro  Pajola
MIN: 24.66
PTS: 6.4 (59.46%)
REB: 2.4
As: 4
ST: 1.8
BL: 0.2
TO: 1.8
GM: 5

Despite being just 22-year-old, Pajola is playing the way you wouldn't believe he is at the beginning of his career. It's because he reads the game and reads the opponents as if they are an open book.

Being young is almost always an advantage, especially if you keep in mind that Italy is building a new national team. A hungry team that aims to stay at the top for… well, at least for a while.

Starter in EuroCup and the main star of the Italian national team in the FIBA World Cup Qualifiers window, he still refuses to call himself a star.

"I think about playing and winning," Pajola said in an interview with Artem Komarov. "I try to give my 100% to the game. Somebody has this skill; somebody has another skill, everybody can do something differently, everybody is talented."

"We just try to put everyone together and have a team where every player can show what he can do on the court, "he explains.

He shows it very well, averaging 6,4 points, 2,4 rebounds, 4 assists, and 1,8 steals per game in EuroCup. His game in domestic competition speaks for itself - Pajola was awarded best young player in Italy last year.

He is supposed to play under big pressure now, trying to prove it again, but he doesn't feel like this.

"No, not so much. I feel normal. For me, the most important thing is to put my best effort into playing for the national team and the club, too. I don't feel this kind of pressure. When I am on the court, all I can think about is playing my best basketball ", he says.

What makes this task way easier is having Milos Teodosic by his side. He came back to Europe to play under Sasa Djordjevic, and though the Serbian coach left the club this summer, Teo stayed and continued to share his experience with Pajola.

3-pointers this season

Points made: 7,8
Accuracy: 37,1%
Place in standings: 14
Record max: 13
Record min: 3
Most made 3FGs: Marco Belinelli

"It is pure magic," Pajola said about the experience with Teodosic. "I feel really, really lucky to play with him. I think he helps me a lot with my improvement. I think every smart player will improve a lot just playing with him."

"I feel fortunate and thankful for the club and for Sasa Djordjevic for bringing Milos to Bologna. Milos can make you shoot by yourself, he can send you in a fastbreak, he can arrange everything for you to score easy lay-ups. It is magic overall, "Pajola added.

While he is trying to take the best out of Milos Teodosic, he also has the privilege to have one of the best Italian coaches right beside him. Sergio Scariolo returned to Europe to take the challenge and lead Virtus Bologna to the EuroLeague, which the bosses and the fans are craving for.

Pajola says that Scariolo is very good at explaining his basketball vision.

"A great coach with a great experience. He has won a lot of things, and he tries to bring his knowledge to our team. We have to create this winning mentality to reach every goal that the club set.

We're trying to learn from him, he's really good at explaining his basketball vision. For sure, it's a new set, new staff, new everything. We're still adapting, we lost some games, but it's a part of the process. We keep building and keep practicing hard ", he says.

It is still unclear where he will end up in a few years – EuroLeague, NBA, or something else. There is no ceiling for him if he continues to progress as he does in the last few seasons. However, he doesn't want to think about it right now. It is day by day, as he says.

"I don't know. I don't like making many plans for the future, I just live my life day by day, I just think about today and tomorrow. I am trying to improve every practice. It is not like I look too far ahead, one week, one month, or one year. We will see what will happen ", Pajola concludes.

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