Brock Motum is on lock down in Valencia as impending birth of his first born approaches
COVID-19 has had a damaging impact on a range of social, economic and political spheres all over the world, and when put into perspective, is much bigger than simply just the cancelling or postponing of basketball and sport leagues globally.
Countries in Europe have been put on lockdown, which has had a subsequent impact on 2016 Rio Olympian Brock Motum.
Motum is contracted to Valencia, a Spanish team that plays in the EuroLeague. Valencia are currently sitting in tenth position, two spots behind the postseason cut off and only one win behind eighth place. With four games left, the team was getting set for a playoff push – but, now, it looks like they won’t get a chance.
Like many of its neighbouring countries, Spain went into a government enforced lockdown. For Motum, with a wife who is is entering her 34th week of pregnancy, one can only assume this is a very difficult time for the Motum clan who is stuck in their apartment.
Speaking on Melbourne's 1116 SEN Breakfast Show with Tim Watson and Garry Lyon, Motum was very candid about the toughness of what he and his wife are currently going through earlier this week.
“Yeah, been in lockdown the last couple of days – we flew to Istanbul on Wednesday because we were scheduled to have a Euroleague game Thursday night,” Motum explained, when discussing the drastic events that have occurred in his past week while he had been travelling with his team.
"And then we rocked up for shoot around Thursday morning and they said, ‘fellas the games cancelled’, so lucky we had a charter, so they moved the charter time up a little early. So we flew [back] to Spain that day and yeah, just been locked down in the apartment ever since."
With a heavily pregnant wife by his side, naturally the question begs of what will happen as the due date approaches, considering Spain's lockdown. In any normal circumstance, expecting parents have medical check-ups to ensure everything is going smoothly as the big day approaches.
"Tomorrow morning, we got to go to a hospital for a check-up," Motum explained. "I guess there’s police on the streets just you know because you’re not supposed to leave your house obviously in a lock down unless you’re working, going to the hospital or going to the pharmacy. So, I guess I’ll have to brush up on my Spanish tonight and make sure if we get stopped I’ll try and explain to them where we’re going and hopefully they let us pass!"
As you could imagine, being in lockdown would be strange – something most people around the world would have never really experienced in their lifetime. Motum shared these sentiments when being prompted to discuss the current feel around his residence.
“It’s a pretty eerie feeling to be honest. Streets are usually, you know, packed. [It’s] starting to get a bit warmer, so the last few weeks there’s been heaps of people on the streets, cars, busy, and now you look outside and there’s like, I don’t know, a couple cars every hour and rarely anyone in the street.
"There’s a few people in the courtyard, you know, with kids that are just sort of sticking to their own space just to get out of the apartment, but it’s a really, like, eerie feeling.
"You’re just not allowed out, a lot of people are just out on their terraces or balconies, you know, communicating with each other across the building, but yeah, it’s pretty strange but I guess necessary thing that we have to do at the moment."
Much like in Australia, panic buying and supermarket rushes are something Spain are no stranger to. During a lockdown, he pointed out it’s no different, and the panic is very much visible.
"Some markets are still open, but as you have probably seen all over social media and things like that, people have been going a bit crazy, just stocking up on everything! So a lot of the supermarkets have been pretty bare or there’s just been big lines and things like that.
"I was lucky I told my wife Tuesday or Wednesday when there was some hint, you know how Italy was locked down, I thought maybe you should just you know go stock up on rice and pasta and some frozen fruits and some meat so we can just freeze in case we have to stay home like the Italians are. Fortunately she went before it was very busy, and yeah, now we’re pretty lucky we have enough -- you know -- bare essentials, to get by because I wouldn’t really want to go the supermarket at the moment if it’s full of people."
It's being such a stressful situation for the Motum's, yet he assured that despite the challenge posed that both he and his wife Martyna were remaining positive.
"Yeah, she’s all good," Motum shared of his wife. "Being at home for three days and not doing a lot, she’s probably cleaned the whole house six times! So, I don’t think there’s too much danger of catching coronavirus in the house. So yeah, we’re pretty sterile and safe in here. But nah, she’s been really good, and yeah, no complaints."
While the EuroLeague season has yet to be cancelled, for now, he has to hold tight and bide his time just like everyone else. However he has something arguably more important on the horizon, and that's the birth of his first born son.
"He's due in May, so we'll see what happens between now and then," explained Motum to The Pick and Roll. "That's the plan.
"[There are] no practices or anything [at the moment]. The team dropped some equipment around the other day from the gym, but other than that just I'm trying to stay sane inside."