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Jaylen Jones: "Teams should start fearing us, we have the talent to be at the top of the league" | Israel today


The forward who played in the NBA and the Euroleague landed in Hapoel Haifa this summer in a move that surprised quite a few professionals • Now he wants to bring Europe to Carmel revealed in an interview: "We want to prove to people what we are worth" • Tonight he will meet the Finnish Katia in the semi-finals of the Eurocup qualifiers for a battle for the entire pot

When the official announcement came out on behalf of Hapoel Haifa this summer about the official signing of the American forward Jaylen Jones in the ranks of the team, quite a few professionals in Israel were surprised.

The red team from Carmel that changed its face and gave the keys to Sharon Drucker to lead it put Yahava on the experienced forward, and he who has gone through quite a few big stops in his career sounds ready for the challenge.

In a special and first interview in the Holy Land, the American reveals what made him come to Israel, talks about his years as the son of an ex-military father, the experiences from the best league in the world, the desire to lead the Haifaites to achievements and sends a clear message to all those who doubt his team: "We are hungry to prove, there is talent here to be at the top ".


An impressive signing that surprised many, photo: Getty

Hello Jaylen, tell us about yourself.

"I am the son of military personnel, in my childhood I traveled all over the world because of this. My father served in the United States Army for more than 20 years. I define Dallas as my home. In the past I played in the NBA and Euroleague and now I am here in Israel, in the uniform of Hapoel Haifa."

You had a good career in

the NBA and in

Europe, why did you decide to come to Israel?

"I had a very good contact and connection with coach Sharon Drucker. We kept in touch throughout the summer and I felt that at this point in my career, where I am and at my age, this is a great opportunity for me and I am excited to be here."

You talked about your relationship with Sharon Drucker, describe to us the relationship between you two.

"A special relationship. We talked a lot throughout the summer about expectations and what he thinks I can bring to the team. We agreed on many things and I realized that this is a great place and situation for me."

Jones (29, 2.01), a graduate of the well-respected Texas M&A University, is a diverse forward with rich experience and a diverse past in basketball, having previously played in New Orleans and Dallas in the NBA and in Baskonia in the Euroleague.

You have played in the


and Euroleague in the past, how will this experience help you this year?

"Playing at the highest levels of basketball gave me experience in big classes against quality opponents. Every time I compete against quality opponents in big classes I shine and play my best game."

We have five!

One by one, three of the four foreigners of the Hapoel B-Cure Lazer Haifa landed in Israel yesterday: Kadeem Allen, Devonte Upson and Jaylen Jones.

Will Rayman and Spencer Weiss also landed after them.

The five were welcomed by the team's coach, Sharon Drucker and manager Dodo.

— Hapoel Haifa BC (@HapoelHaifaBC) August 15, 2022

The coach and the team see you as someone who should carry this team this year, are you ready for the challenge?

"My goal is to give my all every practice and every game and make sure I do everything to help the team win."

What do you think of the squad assembled here this summer?

"We have a very talented staff here. We have a good mix of Israelis and foreigners and I think that teams should start looking at us, take us seriously and start being careful and afraid of us."

Tonight you start the journey in the Eurocup qualifiers, where do you think the team can go this year in this arena?

"We have to work for it every day. We train very hard and aggressively in training, we don't give up on ourselves for a moment, everything to improve. We have all the tools and the ability to qualify for Europe and we are excited and ready for the challenge"

How far can you go this year in the league and in Europe?

"It depends on how hard we work and how committed we are to the task. My approach is to conquer the challenges every day. Come to training every day and improve. The team does a great job and pushes us in training, we have to take it day by day."

Can Hapoel Haifa be the dark horse of the season in the league?

"We can be one of the best teams in the league without a doubt. I've been in a lot of teams and seen a lot of players and I know we have what it takes both in terms of players and in terms of the team to be there at the top, it all depends on how hard we work every day to improve."

What can the fans expect to see from you and the team this year on the field?

"The fans will get a tough and aggressive team. I am an energetic player who plays at a high pace and does everything on the field to help his team win as many games as possible. There are a bunch of hungry players here who want to succeed, we want to prove to people what we are worth."

What is your goal this season?

"Every player wants to win as many games as possible and win titles, in every setting and in every league."

Is returning to the


a goal for you?

"I'm fine where I'm at right now, I'm not thinking about the future at this point."

Finally, do you have a message for Hapoel Haifa fans?

"We will provide you with a fighting team every night on the field, but we need you with us. You are an important key for us on the way to victory."

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Source: israelhayom

All sports articles on 2022-09-28

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