Up close with Charlie Villanueva
Ready to Roll with Milwaukee
Posted by By Charlie Villanueva, Aug. 1, 2006

The second game of our 2006-07 schedule, on Nov. 3, my new team -- the Bucks -- play against my former team, the Raptors, in the Air Canada Centre. I think it is going to be weird for me, at least in the first quarter, but once I get into the game I think that I will feel fine. I am not worried about having to defend Chris Bosh because it was something I always did during practice last season. Between Chris and I, it will be a battle. I know what he does best, and he knows what I do best -- so throughout the game it will be: Let the best man win.

Charlie Villanueva, acquired from Toronto in July, finished second in Rookie of the Year balloting.
Gary Dineen/NBAE/Getty Images
While I hope to bring further success to Milwaukee, last year’s team made it to the playoffs despite being young. They clinched the eighth and final seed in the Eastern Conference, and if they had won one more game during the season, I believe, they would have claimed the fifth spot. It showed me that they are not too far from being a championship contender. If you incorporate the trades they have made so far this season I think it makes the Bucks a much better team. However, since I left Toronto, they have made a lot of changes. They have brought in a lot of guys, who may or may not complement each other. But the Bucks, on the other hand, have made only a few changes, including trading Jamaal Magloire. This keeps a lot of the chemistry that made them a success last season, which I think will make us a better team in the long run.

When I initially came to Milwaukee, General Manager Larry Harris was one of the first people I met. He was thrilled to have me as a part of the team. He told me that the most important piece of the puzzle that I bring to the organization is my versatility. He was most excited about pairing me up with Andrew Bogut, who was in the same Draft class as I was. Andrew Bogut was the first overall pick in the 2005 Draft and I was the seventh. Mr. Harris was very energetic about the upcoming season and told me that he knows the future is bright. And I absolutely agree with him. I think our future is very bright. I believe that Andrew and I complement each other very well. Both of us are unselfish players and we both just got done enjoying very successful rookie years in the league. While Andrew and I both have room for improvement, I truly believe that the future in Milwaukee is bright. So bright, in fact, that I look forward to winning the Central Division with the help of my teammates.