Marius Grigonis spoke to the Lithuanian Media “15min.lt” and mentioned the time he is in Panathinaikos and the pressure that exists.
At the same time, the Lithuanian guard spoke about Ergin Ataman, Kosta Sluka, but also about his compatriots, Ignas Brazdeikis and Mindaugas Kuzminskas.
The statements of Marius Grigonis:
For Ergin Ataman: “Ataman helps you play freely in the game. But there are many aspects. It gives you freedom to play, but if you miss or make a mistake, that freedom can quickly end. It is ambiguous. He’s different from the coaches I’ve had in the past, he’s got his own things, but everyone has them. Everything is good for today, but if you lose a few times, everything will go bad – the players are not good, the manager is not good. You have to win and then everything will be fine.”
About his presence at Panathinaikos: “This year I’m only playing at three. At such an age that you can’t choose where to give – this is what you get. I’m not the type of player who wants to pass his own. As the coach sees me, that’s how I play.
Last year there was a lot going on, it was hard to be happy. This year that feeling has returned, because we have a good locker room, we get along well, we go out and do other things besides playing basketball. This was missing last year.
I’m already a veteran in this team, I’m the third oldest. Slukas is not one to talk much. He is calmer. But of course the fact that he is there gives him a lot of respect. I don’t know how many times he’s been to the Final Four and won the EuroLeague. If he says something, he feels that everyone respects him. But he is not someone who talks a lot. Only me and two Greeks remained in the team from last year, so we are helping others to integrate. Everything is fine now.”
Regarding the pressure on Panathinaikos: “There is a lot of pressure. In Zalgris there was “gossip”. Here the media is even sharper. They ask you directly, judge you, insult you. Here, people give in to emotions very quickly, but they are all honest – maybe that’s why emotions arise. They crave victories.
Last year there was a lot of talk from people, fans, but that’s part of the job. You get a lot of criticism, but you should only listen to criticism from those who want to help you. This is the culture here – it’s hard to explain, those who have played here know. The entire city is divided into two camps. More Panathinaikos fans, but you can feel those reactions wherever you go.”
For Ignas Brazdeikis and Mindaugas Kuzminskas: “I have not been with Brazdeikis in Athens because he plays for Olympiakos. No, I’m just kidding. He lives a bit far and our schedules are tight. Kuzminskas and I met once, but usually when I have free time, he has a match. When there are so many matches it’s hard to find each other. But when we went out, I understood that he is satisfied and that everything is good for him.”