Phoenix Suns center and hero of Polish people everywhere, Marcin Gortat said tonight that he's unsure if he'll be able to play for his national team this summer. Gortat said the likely NBA lockout this summer would create complexities with his medical insurance that could prohibit him from playing for Poland in the offseason.
"If they announce lock out there's big possibility that I will not play," Gortat said.
It's clearly not something that's been decided in his mind and there's other factors beyond the lockout as well.
"We'll see. Now is a different situation. I used to play five or six minutes a game but now I'm playing 35 (minutes)," he said.
" I'm going to need some rest. We'll see. I'm definitely going to work on my game. I've got to improve playing with the back to the basket, definitely try to improve my shooting from outside and still I have to get stronger, physically get stronger."
At the same time, Gortat understands that he has responsibilities to his country and seems torn about it.
"First of all, I can't abandon my national team just like that. Being the only NBA player in the league from Poland, I still have responsibility to come and help and I want to do this. It's fun to play with your national team. It's fun to play in front of your own crowd. We have a chance to compete in Europe for a good spot."
For Suns fans, it's good to hear that Marcin is committed to improving his game and has a clear understanding of what he needs to do. I've been told that physically his body can improve a lot, including his core and leg strength. In the past while playing in Orlando his workout regime wasn't really focused on preparing him for the NBA game.
It is likely that it would be in Gortat's personal interest to play for his country as much as possible so he can prepare himself for life after his NBA career. Keeping good ties and relationships for the popular Polish player could help create opportunities for him in his home country down the road.