In an interview with RAI, the big Italian broadcaster, Andrea Bargnani spoke Thursday about how his Italian national teammates are "frustrated" and "motivated" to do well in Eurobasket which begins Saturday. It's "necessary" to win, Bargnani said.
He also spoke about how over his career, his attitude toward winning has changed, that now, after 10 years in the NBA, he's no longer satisfied with individual achievement. Indeed, his lack of team play has been a source of criticism over the years.
"I strive always to improve and try to move forward, despite the injuries, stops and overwhelming adversity," he told RAI, according to a translation. "Winning I feel it inside as a need. When I arrived in the NBA, I thought a lot more about me, as an individual, scoring 20 points.
"This thought has gone away slowly. I always try to continue improving. However, playing well and losing the game leaves me with a sense of sadness that in the early years wasn't there."
Bargnani has been criticized by Phil Jackson and others throughout his career for not contributing to the team aspect of the game. Jackson, in particular, said that as recently as last season Bargnani had been a "tease" and a "malingerer," whose attitude had hurt the team. Bargnani has said he will comment about Jackson's remarks following Eurobasket.