(E) I love the water. To wake up every day it would be good to see that
I love the water. To wake up every day it would be good to see that
Bogut Ready to Begin Work With Bucks
By JAMES A. CARLSON
Associated Press Writer
June 30, 2005, 7:47 AM EDT
ST. FRANCIS, Wis. -- Now that the NBA draft is over, Andrew Bogut is ready to show the Milwaukee Bucks just what they got with the No. 1 pick.
Bogut was introduced by the Bucks on Wednesday, one day after the former Utah star was chosen with the first selection in the NBA draft. The 7-foot center is looking to get some rest, learn about his new teammates and concentrate on basketball -- a game he started playing at 11 in Australia.
"I think this is the best part. Things quiet down, and now I'll just let my game do the talking," he said.
Bogut said he's a good fit for Milwaukee, which he called a blue-collar place that fits his background in Australia. It was there that he worked his way through the youth program to the national team and became a starter for the 2004 Australian Olympic squad.
Bogut, 20, who earned college player of the year honors last season, said he's eager to get to work. He seemed to welcome the heavy expectations placed on his shoulders by the Bucks -- a team coming off its worst record (30-52) in nearly a decade.
"I really believe within the next five years you're going to look at the best center in the Eastern Conference," general manager Larry Harris said.
Harris' focus will now turn to re-signing top scorer Michael Redd and other free agents, and hiring a replacement for Terry Porter, the second-year coach who was fired last week.
When the Bucks selected Bogut on Tuesday night, the news quickly spread down to Australia.
"I heard that they stopped every television program and put on a news break about the draft, which is very special," he said. "You know, basketball is not the biggest sport in Australia so it's very special to me to have something like that. ... The country actually stopped for five minutes and they had that break. The people down there are very proud of me."
Bogut was impressed that fans in Milwaukee's Bradley Center on draft night displayed flags of Australia and of Croatia, honoring his ethnic heritage.
"You don't get that in many NBA arenas," he said. "I think the people here are very proud to have me and I'm very proud to have them."
Bogut is among the young Bucks players expected to get a taste of NBA competition during summer league play.
He said one of his priorities will be finding a home in Milwaukee with a view of Lake Michigan instead of the Southern Pacific Ocean shores of his hometown.
"I'm going to get an apartment somewhere looking at the water," he said. "I love the water. To wake up every day it would be good to see that."