Satoransky relishes prospect of Wizards spell

Wed Jul 6, 2016 3:50am EDT
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By Zoran Milosavljevic

BELGRADE (Reuters) - Tomas Satoransky regards his expected move from Barcelona to the NBA's Washington Wizards to provide him with the greatest challenge of his career, the Czech guard told Reuters.

The versatile 24-year-old, who can perform either as a playmaker or a point guard, confirmed he was on the verge of moving across the Atlantic after a seven-year spell in Spain.

"We have a verbal agreement, it's not official yet," Satornasky said after the Czechs suffered a shock 71-59 reverse to Latvia at an Olympic qualifying tournament in the Serbian capital on Tuesday.

"We will see when this tournament is over but it's a challenge I have always looked forward to."

After five years at Sevilla, Satoransky joined Barcelona in 2014 and quickly drew attention with impressive performances in the Euroleague, the continent's premier club competition.

Averaging 9 points and 4.3 assists per game last season, he helped the Catalan giants reach the Euroleague playoffs after winning the 2015 Spanish Supercup with them.

"It was my path to play for one of the biggest clubs in Europe," he said. "It's very challenging to play in a high-pressure environment, but it gave me a lot."

Satoransky acknowledged it was only going to get tougher in the NBA, where many European players have struggled to adapt to the exertions of the world's premier basketball league.   Continued...

Czech Republic's David Jelinek (12), Jiri Welsch (9), Petr Benda (4) and Tomas Satoransky (8) celebrate their victory in the EuroBasket 2015 round of 16 match against Croatia at the Pierre Mauroy stadium in Villeneuve d'Ascq near Lille, France, September 13, 2015. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier