The San Antonio Spurs got their first preseason win over Montepaschi Siena beating the Italian team 106-77. And though the game was a complete blow-out for the Spurs, fans also got to see forward Viktor Sanikidze who the Spurs own his rights since trading for him with the Hawks at the 2004 NBA Draft.
Sanikidze finished with five points and after the game, Project Spurs caught up with him for a Q&A. In this interview, Viktor gave his thoughts on the Spurs, talks about whether he will come to the NBA, which Spur impresses him the most and much more.
Jeff: What were your thoughts about the Spurs?
Viktor: They've change a lot of players but the main players, they are still there, (Tim) Duncan, (Manu) Ginobili and (Tony) Parker. I think as long as they are on the team, they'll always going to be competing for the best, a championship.
They Spurs hold your rights. Are you still looking to come to the NBA and play for the Spurs?
Now I just signed a contract with Siena, the best team in Italy. It's my new challenge for me, to play in the Euroleague. I hope to do good. I had a good season last year. I hope I am going to good and hope that the Spurs are going to like my numbers also.
Did you talk Spurs coach Gregg Popovich after the game?
After the game he wished me good luck for the season. We talked before at practice. He has been following me and my stats and everything. I think they have some interest in me. I'll try to do my best.
Did Pop give you any advice?
My agent is here and they talked. For sure they gave me some advice. I always keep in touch with them since I was drafted.
Will you look forward to playing for Popovich? I hear he is a really "easy" coach to play for if you come to San Antonio.
(laughs) Yeah for sure but when he gets mad, you know he gets mad!
Was there any player for the Spurs you were really impressed with during the game?
Ginobili always impresses me! You have to expect those things from him. The way he plays is unbelievable.
What about the new player for San Antonio, Nando De Colo?
I know him because he plays great plus his play in the summer with the French team but he is a great player for sure. I think he's going to be fine here.
spurssallday - I don't agree. Powell is only 1/2" taller and 5 lbs heavier at 240. He isn't going to be able to play against post players. If that's off the table, Brown's your better bet. He's ridiculously athletic and long, and with Diaw and Jack, was part of the #3 defense in the NBA under Larry Brown in 2009-2010 as a rookie. Think about that. Larry Brown, who hates rookies, played him 16 minutes a game as a rookie. He's a plus defender that was just about at the NBA average PER at just a hair under 15.
@SPURSALLDAY I think Powell may be better for Spurs THIS year, but I have a feeling Brown could end up the better player