“Don’t look old”: Scola, 41, ready for 5th Games

He was the youngest player on the Argentine team to win the 2002 world championship, the current Basketball World Cup.

But in 2021, the story is very different.

He is 10 years older than the next oldest on the team, Nicolás Laprovittola, at just 31. Two of his teammates, Leandro Balmoro and Francisco Cafforo, were four years old when they won gold in Athens 2004.

And the level of respect that Scola, who spent 10 seasons in the NBA, continues to impose on everyone involved in the sport is clear. During one of Argentina’s preparation matches, once coach Sergio Hernández finished what he was saying during a break, Scola called the other four players who were on the court at the time, gathered them in a semicircle before him and He spoke to them for another minute about exactly what was needed at that moment.

Luis is an extraordinary human being, “said United States coach Gregg Popovich. Obviously, he loves basketball. He has been playing for a long time. There is a group of guys, in the last 10 or 15 years, 20 years, what Whatever, they are very close. They love sports, they have been a great example for international basketball and Luis is the epitome of all that. And I can only continue to be amazed by his love for sports, his love for his teammates and how much he wants to lead and be there. He and his show are special. “

It’s reasonable to think that these will be the last Games for Scola. But those of Paris will be in three years and no basketball player has ever played six.

Scola insists he doesn’t see the Tokyo rendezvous as nothing more than his next challenge.

I’m not trying to do anything special in Tokyo, he pointed out. I’m not trying to make it a farewell tournament. I’m not trying to put an epic end to my career. I don’t even know if I’m going to retire after the tournament. None of that is going through my head right now. “

All I think about is how can I be in the best shape possible, how can I be in a good position to help my team win, how can I help these guys lead. “

And, above all, in not looking old.