Brezec Primed To Help Slovenia
Primoz Brezec has been watching his weight this summer in a bid to help Slovenia to glory at the FIBA World Championship.
At 30, Brezec knows he is losing a step or two against younger players, and that means he needs to put in extra effort to make sure he is in shape going into the tournament in Turkey in a month's time.
"If you are 130 kilograms, you can no longer play top basketball," he said.
"I am no longer 20 years old but rather approaching 31 and my body reacts better if I lose 10 kilograms.
"It's easier to run, I'm more versatile, and so I can help my team more."
Brezec is with the team in Liuzhou, where they are playing in the Stankovic Continental Cup, a warm-up tournament also involving Iran, Australia and hosts China.
Slovenia enjoyed a 107-74 win over Iran in their opening game, but Brezec knows there are tougher challenges yet to come.
"The Australians have come to this tournament fairly complete, even if Andrew Bogut is not here, because they also have David Andersen and others," he said.
"Iran played without NBA center Hamed Haddadi.
"But that is not important. We will play every game to win and to try to win the tournament so we can be in the best shape for the World Championship.
"I think the coaches will give a chance to all the players.
"The World Championship is still far enough away that we have time to move forward and correct the things that we are not doing well.
"We should be well prepared and make use of every session and every match to get in shape by August 28." Slovenia have been drawn in Group B at the FIBA World Championship, and will face Brazil, Croatia, Iran, Tunisia and the United States.