Portis: "The fight with Mirotic made me a better person, without rancor"

He is one of the best of the Bucks in the 2021 Finals. Now, four years later, Bobby Portis remembers how his fight with Nikola Mirotic affected him.


The circle has been closed in Milwaukee for Bobby Portis. Right in his prime, when he is being decisive for the Bucks to fight for the NBA title against the Suns and with him proving that he can be useful as a powerful replacement for Giannis Antetokounmpo himself, Nikola Mirotic returns to the conversation. It occurs after a heartfelt interview with Shams Charania for The Athletic in which the power forward explains what changed him on a personal level his dark fight with the Spanish-Montenegrin player, now at Barça and whose last steps in America were in the franchise from Wisconsin to Chicago in 2017.

"He made me a better person, I'm sure. Mirotic and I always had altercations, that was not the first time and those in the offices know it. But that was something different. Some of the things that were said were related to him I hit from behind or like that. Those who were there know what happened. If it had been so bad, the Bulls would not have offered me a contract renewal. I think that sums it up, "he says. "What was crazy is that he and I were very close after he recovered from the injury. Then I did not speak to him again, but without grudges at least on my part. I was 22 years old and he was about 26, We were both young. It was just a stain, "he adds.

Portis was suspended eight games for that incident in which Mirotic ended up in hospital. But, as he puts it, the Bulls offered him to renew later. After his time with the Bulls, he also went through the Wizards and Knicks with a role similar to that of the Bucks but with less success.

"Sometimes, when you're a young guy in this competition, you look at what others have. Since this guy has this, I must have it. If the Bulls gave me that renovation now, I'd take it. It's life-changing money , with which you can provide your family with financial health. I was thinking more about other things. '' I'm worth this. 'Things like that. I was a very good fit for the Bulls, the city loved me and I played hard, "he says about the past in Chicago.

He has the option to continue one more year in Milwaukee, but he hasn't considered it yet: "I haven't thought about it. I woke up after the conference finals out of my bed, I didn't sleep at all: 'Wow, I'm in the fucking Finals of NBA ', that's all I was thinking. You're going to train and the Larry O'Brien trophy is all over the place, now I'm just focused on this mission.

"I had to get my body in the best possible shape, that was the most important thing for me. I lost a lot of weight and reduced a lot of body fat. Now I am more agile and mobile than ever. But seeing Giannis or Brook Lopez every day and being able to see what they do, their tactic, is what has changed my life. Being able to mix those things and have the coach stay with me every damn day after the video sessions makes me want to do more, "he adds about the various connections on these Bucks.

In the interview he also tells how he spoke with Antetokounmpo before signing with Milwaukee and how he gave his approval: "It was hard. I didn't know him much up to that point, so being able to talk to him was great. He was in Greece, in two spindles Different hours, so I had to call him when it was seven more hours for him. I finally caught him and everything worked out. Money was not the problem for me. I just wanted to be part of a winning team and show everyone that I can really help beat a team. When you're on losing teams, you might have good stats, but no one respects a losing team's stats if you're not a high pick in the draft or if you're not a superstar in the making. It has been a year of investment for me, I am happy to have come ".

Photos from as.com
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