SAN ANTONIO — Coming into the NBA as a rookie, there is a lot to handle especially for San Antonio Spurs' Jock Landale.
Landale came into the league not a traditional rookie having played professionally overseas with the ABA League and the Australian NBL League where he dominated.
Needless to say, there was a big adjustment for the Spurs big man and he spoke about his trials and tribulations in his first NBA season with Australia's News.com.
“When I got to the Spurs there was a moment there I felt lost,” Landale said. “There is obviously still some frustration but that’s part of the league, you’re expected to be a man about it and I got good at that in the end."
Landale admits his biggest hurdle was getting over the fact he wasn't getting enough minutes.
But as the season moved on, he learned to deal with it and accept that in the NBA, everyone must wait for their time.
“It’s a business and you’ve got to understand that and just be ready for your opportunity," he said. "I stopped worrying so much about ‘why aren’t they playing me, what have I done wrong’ and it just became easy."
When Landale did get minutes, he made the most of them.
He is the first Spurs rookie to score 25-plus points while shooting better than 80 percent from the floor in a game since David Robinson in 1989. He also scored a career-high 26 points against Indiana on March 12 and showed he can be a threat from the three-point line.
“There is obviously still some frustration but that’s part of the league, you’re expected to be a man about it and I got good at that in the end,” he said.
Landale will have a lot to play for next season.
It will be his final contract year with the Spurs and will be looking to prove himself worthy of another deal whether in San Antonio or elsewhere.
But the lessons he learned in his rookie season should help elevate his game next season.
"I wish I could have been out there a bit more, but that stuff, I can’t really control," he said. "That’s what I was most proud of during the season down the stretch, I just honed in on controlling what I could control."
Said Landale: “I felt like I really matured in that sense this year.”