Sebastian Opon:”It is a legit grind, if you aren’t mentally strong this isn’t for you.”

Interview with our player Sebastian Opon that signed his first professional contract in Spain with CB Tormes from Salamanca after attending Pro Placement Program at Europe Basketball Academy.

Where you started to play basketball and if you may explain your basketball background?
I didn't take basketball seriously until I was 12, so I had somewhat of a late start. I played college at a small school in Texas called Texas college. After college, I went to Australia, but I hurt my foot before the season started and was sent back.

Why did you decide to join Europe Basketball Academy?
Because I didn't play at a big name school it was difficult for people to pay attention to me. I had a great film and played well but nobody was giving me a chance.

How did you hear about our academy? Who recommended it to you?
I heard about it through a friend of mine who's former teammate went to the academy. I knew being out here would be great for me because I was confident in my abilities and I knew somebody would give me a chance.

Did you attend some camps and if you did can you explain the difference between those camps and Europe Basketball Academy?
Yes, I attended a camp in Las Vegas. It was over 200 players. We played 4 games in 3 days and that was it. The academy is better because it is less players here and for a longer period of time. Also, you are here in Europe so it's easier for coaches to see you. Foreign coaches don't come to the USA to scout as much as people think. The academy makes it easier for everyone.

What is the difference between playing in Europe and where you played before coming to Europe?
I played a few preseason games in Australia before getting sent back home. In Europe, the players do a lot more passing and cutting instead of individual one on one play. There is also a lot of pick and roll.

How did the days look for you at Europe Basketball Academy? Describe the regular day you were going through? Describe what new you learned about European basketball in Europe Basketball Academy?
I used to wake up at 4am-430am and go to the beach that was nearby. I would do a lot of ball handling drills for nearly for up to an hour. After that, I would come back, rest for a little bit and head to the morning practice. After the morning practice, I would go lift or go back to the house. At 12 is lunch, then our afternoon practice at 3:30pm. After the last practice, I would go lift or go back to the house until dinner. This was the most time I put into basketball daily. The academy showed me that's what it takes to be the best.

Your advice to players that are considering joining Europe Basketball Academy? What are values that we share? What kind of player should enter academy?
It isn't as glamorous as you think and that's for a reason. It's a legit grind, it's going to be difficult in the beginning because it is a process and not everyone gets signed right away so if you aren't mentally strong then you can't make it here.

Share some interesting situations that you experienced in the academy that you will remember and that made a strong impression on you.
The guys here at the academy were great. We all looked it for each other. I thought it was going to be different cause we are all competing for jobs but it wasn't.

Where you ended up after you attended Europe Basketball Academy?
I signed for CB Tormes in Salamanca, Spain. It is a beautiful city, and the organization is great. It's was definitely worth the process..

Here you may write some finishing comments what you find important to share.
Like I said earlier it is a legit grind. If you aren't mentally strong this isn't for you. There are days when you will want to quit and go home, cause you know you good enough and you haven't received any calls. You just have to stay strong and keep working. It's all a mental test.

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