TODAY WE TAKE THE TIME TO CATCH UP WITH A TALENTED YOUNG SCORER FROM SWITZERLAND, THAT WE HAD A CHANCE TO CONNECT AND PROVIDE A OPPORTUNITY FOR DEVELOPMENT IN AMERICA. WE KNOW THAT ALL PLAYERS RESPOND DIFFERENTLY TO CHALLENGES AND ALL AREN’T BUILT FOR THE HARDWORK IT TAKES TO ADAPT IN AMERICA. THEY WILL BE UNCOMFORTABLE AND TESTED BEYOND LIMITS OF ADAPTING IN A FAST PACED CULTURE WHILE TRYING TO ACHIEVE A PARTICULAR GOAL. NOTHING WILL BE EASY. PLAYERS WE ARE
CONNECTING WITH, HAVE IMPACTED US IN A POSITIVE WAY AND SHOW THE CHARACTER AND HEART THAT THEY CAN TAKE AN OPPORTUNITY AND GROW FROM IT IN SOME FORM AND MAKE THE MOST OF IT. TAKING ON THE CHALLENGE TO GET TO THE NEXT LEVEL.
HOW DID YOU ADJUST TO AMERICAN COACHES IN AMERICA? My work ethic allowed me to adjust. i just know if I’m prepared i can take on the challenges that coaches have for me.”
WHAT ARE YOU ENJOYING THE MOST ABOUT BASKETBALL IN YOUR SCHOOL? “I am enjoying the fact that we have to adapt as quickly as we can when the game is on the line. The pressure and IQ you need to have and be under control. Its what I enjoy the most to learn and be under control.”
WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST REACTION TO PRESEASON TRAININGS IN AMERICA ? WHERE THEY DIFFICULT AND HAD YOU EVER DONE SUCH TRAINING? “The preseason was difficult, I knew what was coming. I worked hard like this before nothing new for me. Just mental and I put in the work to get better!”
WE LOST A VERY IMPACTFUL MAN OF CLASS AND PASSION IN THE SWITZERLAND BASKETBALL WORLD. HE EMBRACED ALL WITH NO BIAS, ALL THE YOUTH AND ADULTS WITH A OPEN HEART. A VERY SPECIAL MAN INDEED WHO COULD CONNECT WITH ALL AND LEAVE A SMILE ON YOUR FACE. HE WAS YOUR COACH LAST YEAR. HOW DID THE NEWS IMPACT YOU PERSONALLY? When i was told that Coach Fab passed away, it was very tough for me. I was informed of it at 4 am in the morning, when we where on our way to a tournament in Dallas. The whole ride was pretty emotional for me. Was a very hard day at the tournament as Fab was the only thing on my mind. Once i hit the court i turned that emotion into motivation. I played well that day. i played for him.”
YOU WHERE ONE OF THE MAIN PLAYERS FOR YOUR U20 SWISS CLUB LAST SEASON? YOU CHANGED PREP SCHOOLS WHY? “Yes i was a main player back in Switzerland and when I got to San Antonio I had to adjust and have a different role for the team, reason I changed prep school is because I wasn’t given the opportunity to showcase and the amount of work I put in wasn’t enough to get better. Transferring to Lang Prep in Arkansas with Coach Shannon. It allowed me to have more and a better work ethic, because i was able to get in the gym all the time. Extra work is something I do on the regular and with the team it allowed me to control and be more of a leader and definitely to showcase my talents as Coach Shannon trusted in discipline.”
PLAYING AGAINST TOUGHER OPPONENTS ATHLETICALLY AND PHYSICALLY IN AMERICA, DO YOU THINK THIS WILL GIVE YOU AN ADVANTAGE COMING BACK TO PLAY AGAINST YOUR FELLOW OPPONENTs IN YOUR COUNTRY? “I definitely think i will have a big advantage over in Switzerland especially with all the work i have been putting in.”
HOW DO YOU DEAL WITH THE PRESSURE OF HAVING TO PLAY AGAINST PLAYERS THAT ARE ATHLETIC AND TALK A LOT OF TRASH DURING THE GAME? “I Love to play against players that think there better, taller, more athletic than me. My mentality changes become in control and my level goes up.”
HOW WAS IT TO INTEGRATE WITH YOUR TEAMMATES? THEY ALL COME FROM DIFFERENT BACKGROUNDS. DO TOU HAVE A DIFFERENT OUTLOOK ON WHY BASKETBALL IS SO IMPORTANT FOR THEM TO PROVIDE OPPORTUNITIES IN THEIR LIVES? “It was easy to integrate with some of my teammates at first, because they were all friendly and open to having a new teammate. But i do remember some being frustrated that a new player was entering the team to compete for playing time. I believe basketball provides opportunities. Its about those who see it and don’t take small things for granted. Some of my teammates have difficult backgrounds and there mentality on the opportunity is as if they don’t care.
BEING AWAY FROM HOME IS ONE OF THE THINGS THAT IS USUALLY DIFFICULT FOR PLAYERS!!! WHAT HELPS YOU MENTALLY TO BEIGN SO FAR AWAY? What helps the most is FaceTime probably, hahaha but
“I believe basketball provides opportunities. Its about those who see it and don’t take the small things for granted.”
whenever it gets hard i pray.”
WHAT HAS BASKETBALL TAUGHT YOU THAT CARRIES OVER INTO THE OTHER AREAS OF YOUR LIFE? “It carried over the aspects of discipline, trust, family and friends and how to become a man.”
WHAT ADVISE COULD YOU GIVE TO SOMEONE FOREIGN WANTING TO PLAY BASKETBALL IN AMERICA? I would tell someone that prep school is a changing experience. You learn new skills not only on the basketball court, but off the basketball court as well. The living lifestyle and adapting to a whole different culture”
OVERALL HAVE YOU ENJOYED YOUR EXPERIENCE THIS FAR AND IN WHAT AREA DO YOU FEEL YOU’VE IMPROVED THE MOST? “The overall experience is amazing couldn’t ask for better. I learned so much on life and in basketball. I improved in my knowledge of the game and how grateful i am for the little things.”
WOULD YOU RECOMMEND OTHER YOUNG PLAYERS WHO WANT TO DEVELOP TO GO TO PREP SCHOOL YOUR ATTENDING? WHY? “I would definitely recommend it for a person who loves basketball and has the work ethic. Also for those who have character and are grateful and don’t complain, cause life is different here.”
Thank you Gabriel Mouajes for taking the time and sharing with us. We wish you and your teammates well in the month of February and March as we know you guys have big games in front of coaches those months.
Gabriel Moujaes is a talented ambitious hard worker and we look forward to following him on his continued journey so stay tuned for Part 2 so stay updated..
He plays For Lang Prep in Springdale Arkansas.
Can follow him on Instagram: @flyg11