British basketball player Joel Freeland has said the atmosphere he experienced at London 2012 was unparalleled to anything he had ever heard - albeit an NBA playoff would come a close second.
The Portland Trail Blazers forward-centre represented Team GB two years ago, and was one of only two NBA players in the team – the other being Miami Heat’s Luol Deng who was of course at the Chicago Bulls at the time.
And although the national team did not fair too well, losing to Russia, Brazil, Spain and Australia, the 27-year-old still has fond memories of playing for his country in London.
“I don’t really think you can beat playing in London 2012 to be honest,” Freeland told GiveMeSport. “But the atmospheres in the play-off games were unbelievable as well.
“Especially the game against Houston when Damian hit that shot - that was an unbelievable experience.”
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The shot Freeland was referring to is Damian Lillard’s incredible three-pointer with 0.9 seconds left to send Portland to the second round over the Houston Rockets.
Portland are now five games into the new season and sit on a 3-2 record having defeated the Dallas Mavericks 87-108 on Monday, but Freeland admits his team are still trying to find their feet in the midst of a busy November schedule.
The sky’s the limit for us without question - Joel Freeland, Portland Trail Blazers
Freeland said; “I wouldn’t say we’ve had a rough start to the season. But I feel like we’re still trying to find ourselves a little bit.
Sky's the limit for Portland
“I think we can achieve exactly what we achieved last season - if not more.
“We have a great team. We added Chris Kaman and Steve Blake, they are two veteran players, it’s going to help the team immensely.
“So I just feel like we’re just trying to find our feet at the moment, the sky’s the limit for us without question.”
Freeland joined the Trail Blazers in July 2012, signing a three-year deal after spending two years in Spain (Andulasia) playing for Baloncesto Malaga. Before that, the Surrey-born baller was at CB Gran Canaria in the Canary Islands.
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