Tomas Satoransky smiles during a break in a home game

24 Seconds presented by Ibotta: Tomas Satoransky

Tomas Satoransky comes from a family of athletes who excel in a traditionally indoor sport, but their venue of choice was a volleyball court, not a basketball hardwood. The 30-year-old discussed that background and one of his favorite New Orleans teammates in this week’s “24 Seconds” Q&A article, presented by Ibotta: When did you first realize you love the game of basketball?

Satoransky: I was probably in my fourth or fifth year of elementary school, two years after I started playing. I always knew I was going to fall in love with it. My whole family played volleyball, but I didn’t find volleyball that attractive. In basketball, I always played with older kids and enjoyed it. My family respected my (greater interest in basketball). You’ve previously discussed how special it was to play in the Olympics this summer and represent the Czech Republic. When did your team recognize that you had a good chance to qualify for them?

Satoransky: When we beat Canada, which was very unexpected, we realized we could make it happen. Playing in the final (of qualifying) against Greece, we played our best basketball. One of the Pelicans players you knew best from Europe when you arrived here was Willy Hernangomez. What are some of the things he brings to a locker room?

Satoransky: I always joke about him that he’s like a big kid, that it’s great to have (on a team), because his excitement allows people to (act) positive all the time. How impressive is it to watch him be able to produce consistently after some long stretches where he’s been a DNP?

Satoransky: Sometimes things don’t go as you planned – there are a lot of ups and downs in the NBA, everybody knows that – and not everybody can face it. In his six years, he has been playing a pretty similar role for all of his teams. He stays excited and waits for his name to be called, but he’s always ready. He always puts up good numbers. I admire that kind of mentality.

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