Canadian Raptors Brissett, Boucher are happy to be back after spending most of their time

The closure of the NBA provided a silver lining for the new father of Osh Brissett.

A 22-year-old Toronto-based footballer might have been in the thick of yet another long race at the Raptors if COVID-19 hadn’t closed sports around the world in mid-March. Instead, he was at home to support his pregnant girlfriend Iisha Kallum, who was born there on May 28, in connection with the birth of their daughter Ellai Aria, and watched her grow up a few weeks ago.

“Especially at that time [in May]We would be deep in the playoffs or somewhere on the road, so this is a disguised blessing, ”Brissett said. “I managed to spend some time with her and be with her, and to learn a little about the initial stages of her life.” So this is great. “

Hopping on a Flight of Predators to Florida two weeks ago was not so great.

While Brissett is happy to return to the basketball court, the Raptors may be centralized in Florida – one of the world’s hot spots for the new coronavirus – over the next three months, with no chance of seeing the family before the second round of tip-off playoffs. day off on September 1

“I knew that the opportunity that we should return here as a team, I was going to immediately use, regardless of the circumstances,” Brissett said. “Obviously, it’s hard to part with my daughter, but FaceTime and all the things that are available now, I call her all the time and talk to her on the phone, just talk to her.

“It was a difficult decision to leave, but to get on that plane and say” bye “, it was the most difficult.”

Brissett, security guard / striker, said Callum could help with the baby.

“Jamaican families are big,” he said with a laugh during a conversation at Zoom with reporters on Monday. “She certainly has a whole bunch of support. Therefore, I’m not very worried, I know that they will love and care for her as much as she, even with me. ”

On Saturday in Florida, a record high of 11,400 new cases of COVID-19 was recorded, and the rate of positive results over the past two weeks has reached more than 18%. Seven NBA teams were forced to temporarily close educational institutions due to cases of coronavirus disease, and more recently, it is Milwaukee Bucks.

Predators plan to head off to Orlando on Thursday, where they will join 21 other clubs in the quasi-bubble league at Disney World.

Brissett, whose other brother Deyon was selected No. 2 as a whole by the Toronto Argonauts in the April CFL project, plans to carefully follow coronavirus protocols.

“I will do my best to stay away and stay as far away from the virus as possible because I need to think about my daughter,” said Brissett, who this season made a two-way deal with Toronto, sharing time with the Raptors and their subsidiary “ Big League “Raptors” 905. “When she arrives here, I will not have any problems, and I also want to be on the court and play.

“These two things, I know, I want to play, and I want her to be here and not to worry about anything happening to her.”

According to Boucher, he earned 15 pounds in his spare time from the NBA season. (Mary Altaffer / Associated Press)

Meanwhile, Canadian teammate Chris Boucher made the most of his basketball break. A thin striker from Montreal said he gained 15 pounds of muscle, leaving his frame at about 215 pounds.

“I found a way to gain weight and become stronger,” he said. “I think one of my biggest problems was that I could never see the changes, and it’s always difficult when you feel that you are working hard and you don’t see this change.

“I figured out how to maintain my weight and gain a little more every week or two.”

The boucher said that he carefully monitored his calorie yield during training, and then made sure to replenish these calories when he ate.

“There were many things that I did not understand about nutrition, and I spent time on COVID-19 to focus on these things,” he said.

Matt Thomas found the first few weeks of tight blocking. Since the last Raptors game before closing on March 11 was in Utah – Rudy Hobert of Jazz was the first NBA player with a positive result – they had to isolate for two weeks after returning to Toronto. Thomas ended up staying in Canada for more than a month, and the Raptors shooter did not have access to the basketball hoop before he finally made a 12-hour drive home to Wisconsin, where he had access to the gym and gym.

“I can’t remember the last time I went for two weeks, not to mention two months, not having the opportunity to shoot basketball,” Thomas said. “I tried to find parks for games and much more in Toronto, when they were still open, but then everything was closed. This was hard.

“But you can do different things, watch a movie, visualization exercises that I tried to do. [Then] feelings and everyone came back pretty quickly for me in the gym. Moreover, you just had to prepare your body, make sure that your legs are strong enough and your legs are under you, but I have made hundreds of thousands of shots in my life. It’s not going anywhere. “

Predators were limited to only four players per training session, consisting of one player on each hoop. They will be able to resume full practice once they arrive at Disney World and clear the COVID-19 test reports.

They open a seasonal restart on August 1 against the Los Angeles Lakers.

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