Basketball - Clint Capela opens new chapter in Atlanta
Published Dec 16, 2020
Traded to Atlanta by Houston in early February, Clint Capela has yet to play any official game with the Hawks. Fully recovered from an arch injury, the Genevan is ready to open a new chapter in Georgia from the start of the NBA season on December 22. "I work to be dominant for a long time," he says.
Almost everyone agrees that the year 2020 should be tucked away at the bottom of a drawer. Clint Capela is one of those who will not remember these twelve months. Injured in January before a move in February and the onset of the pandemic, the interior is eagerly awaiting the three strikes on December 23 against Chicago. "I want to be on a winning team," says the one who averaged 13.9 points and averaged 13.8 rebounds last season in Texas.
The daily life of NBA players remains however impregnated by the Covid. After the success of the "bubble" of Disney World and the title of the Los Angeles Lakers, the NBA could not impose such a structure for the season of 72 matches (instead of 82) which is announced. This therefore means that the players must be absolutely careful not to be infected, as the Genevan explains: "For the moment, I have not caught the Covid. I am being very careful, but we do not We are never safe. We are tested every day. When we arrive at training, we are entitled to a sample in the nose and we have to wait 45 minutes in the car before the result. "
The arrival on the market of several vaccines could change the protocols, but this is not for now. "We are not among the priority people, specifies the center of the Hawks. The seniors and the nursing staff come well before us. If it is necessary to be vaccinated to continue to play, I would not mind. We will travel again. and we will have to limit all our contacts. There will be an inspector for each team and fines if we break the rules. "
And the rules are not necessarily very clear. "Can we just go out for a walk when we are in a city?" Asks the Genevan, for example. "This period is complicated, we cannot not live."
The impression of aging faster
Clint Capela is entering his seventh season in the NBA, the sixth as an important player in his club's workforce. But at 26, the Meyrinois realizes that his body is subjected to intense workloads. "You feel like you're aging faster, he admits. It's such an intense life! But I work to be dominant for a long time." Back from injury, Clint Capela is delighted to be able to speak on the pitch. The first two preseason matches showed him that his excitement was mounting as we approached the start of the 2020/21 fiscal year: "It's a marathon, not a sprint. You have to increase the intensity little by little to to be on top later in the season. I still have to improve the cardio, but in my Achilles heel, I feel a lot better and my body is readjusting. "
In Atlanta, Capela finds himself in a formation in the making which revolves around a talented young fullback, Trae Young. What motivate the "veteran" of 26 years. "The team is young. More than in Houston. There is a lack of experience, but we work to create chemistry," he analyzes.
The Hawks have also been active in the transfer market, signing Danilo Gallinari, shooter Bogdan Bogdanovic and veteran point guard Rajon Rondo (34) who just won his second title with the Lakers.
"We will do everything to hang the play-off, but it will not be easy, says Capela. The system in Atlanta is different. There is John Collins who is also an interior, but who can move away and shoot three points. At the Rockets I was a bit on my own. "
Isolated for six months
Even in Atlanta, Clint Capela hasn't forgotten Houston. "This is my home, the city I love," he sums up in an interview with Keystone-ATS. There is an apartment and her friend still lives there now. "We see each other on weekends," he says.
In a "covid" world, you have to comply with many rules that are not always easy to understand. So Capela hasn't seen her family for over six months. Tough, even when you're paid several million dollars to play basketball. "They should come soon," he concluded. "But with the quarantines and the current situation, I don't know if it would be great to have to stay home. Honestly, now I just want to start this season."