This is Omri Casspi blogging. Till the day of the draft I’ll be doing a diary here at HoopsHype.com for all of you to read. I guess most of you don’t know me very well, so I’ll give you the basics about myself… I’m Israeli, I’m 19 years old and I play both forward spots for Maccabi Tel Aviv, one of the best teams in Europe. In fact, we played the Euroleague final this season (although we lost). This month, I’ll be working out for many NBA teams trying to show my value and prove that I belong in the League.
Right now, I’m in my hotel room in Houston. I’m working out for the Rockets Wednesday. Before coming here, I was in Miami, Detroit, Memphis, Denver and Cleveland. My routine this month is working out for teams in consecutive days, then getting a day off. It’s a pretty hectic schedule, but you still get to have some fun going from one city to the other. I’m traveling around the country with my agent Guy Harel. I know a lot of guys travel on their own, but I didn’t feel like spending two weeks and a half alone in a different country… So I had him come with me to the States.
One thing I can tell is these workouts are tough. It’s all very intense. You have to shoot a lot and they make you play 1-on-1, 2-on-2 and 3-on-3 all the time. The guys I have competed with have all been cool, although If I’m honest I don’t even know what their names are most of the times. Not sure if the other players care about these things, but I don’t even try to know in advance which guys I’ll have in front in these workouts. I don’t care a lot about that. I just go out there and do my thing – just like I do in real games.
Very often with European players, clubs make it hard for them to leave for the NBA. That’s not the case with me and Maccabi. They have been really supportive throughout all this thing. On one hand, they don’t want to lose me. On the other, they have wished the best of luck to me and I feel they honestly want me to have success here.
Going back to Maccabi is a good backup plan, but I’d rather be in the NBA next season. If I know I’ll be a first-round pick, I’ll stay in the draft for sure. And from what I’m hearing, there a good chance that happens. There’s a couple of teams (can’t say names) that have expressed a lot of interest. Time will tell, as usual.
Talk to you later this week.