Thus: “The real teams seem to be in difficult times. We seduced the referees”


His mark ahead of the 2nd phase of the World Cup after the qualifying victory over New Zealand was given by Dimitris Itoudis.

The federal coach expressed his satisfaction with the fact that the blue and white secured a presence in the 2nd round of the competition, while he pointed out that the important fact is that the National Team is again present in a crucial appointment.

Let’s be a real team. This is evident in the difficult times“, pointed out the experienced coach, while also referring to the refereeing part, after a related question.

In detail what he said:

To qualify for the 2nd phase:We are satisfied with the qualification to the next phase. It was doubtful that Thanasis would play, because the sprain he had was a small bruise, but he overplayed himself and the doctors, and we also talked to the Bucks. We realized we had to change the way we defended and we did. Now let’s see how we approach the next day».

For managing forces in turn 1:I think we managed the strengths of the players well in the three games. With the USA we didn’t come in to lose, but to win things and we had a certain rotation. Obviously I’m concerned about fatigue, but I don’t think any of the players will say ‘I’m tired’ or ‘I can’t do what you’re asking’. The way we found yesterday to close out the rotation by relying on guys who have played at this level is what gave us the solution. That doesn’t mean it will be the same in the next game».

For the match against Lithuania: We can’t be at -15 again and beat Lithuania. They have several reference points in the periphery and in the painting. He doesn’t take us. How we deal with them we will see with the players. We must also dwell on the theoretical part. I believe that we will show up very ready and with self-denial. In Lithuania, basketball is the number one sport. The missing guys from Lithuania have been replaced by guys who have played time in the Euroleague. Played children, who have an important role in Zalgiris. They have the same coach and they are there at the call, most of them. They have tall bodies and good basketball IQ».

With regard to arbitration:I’m not worried about refereeing. Consistency is very important in our life as well. In our own way, we can also discuss it with the referees. But you saw that the team finally changed the facts. When all five are on the same page, I think you influence the decisions as well and you also partly coordinate the way the referees will officiate, not having a bad disposition. In quotes, we lured them too. We set the tone».

It’s about self-awareness. We put both feet on the ground. We are in a team sport, where when you put as much strength as your body and mind gives you, you have your chances. The team is tight, they are together and they have managed to do it despite adversity. It is not easy to manage an absence like Mitoglou’s just before the World Cup begins. We are fully aware of what is happening. We have a very good breakdown, the coaches are doing a great job. We don’t lack anything. We’ll cover everything from the inside. The most important thing is that I have directness with my players and partners. If they support my choices, that’s the most important thing. The world should accept that those who have accepted the call are these eleven and they will give their best. You don’t have to all agree, the point is that we agree with each other and that it comes out on the field. You can’t say it’s fake».

For the consistency of the National Team:Obviously we should put a title, it’s a success or it’s a failure. The point is that the National team is in yet another World Cup. This is a consequence. The athletes who were invited are here consistent, one cannot say here that he came and does a chore. They are here and they are doing us a favor. We have succeeded in the realistic goals we have set so far. Those are enough, not just the two wins. After all, this is what the president asked for. Let’s be a real team. This is evident in the difficult times. When Thanasis takes a second foul and doesn’t want to go out, but he fouled to block the basket, it’s important. The goal to be a team, to represent Greece, to never give up as a group of people, is important. Something is happening here and younger people should see it too. You become better and wiser from this process».

For the absence of some athletes:The point is to be okay with the decisions we made as coaches. Here is whoever wants to be. Whoever does not want, is not. And it is not reprehensible. In other countries you are considered a traitor. We are not like that. While discussing we thought about whether there will be a possible loss and focused more on our creators. Walkup is as if he has been playing for years in the National team, his role has grown».

On defense philosophy: “Yesterday we came back to the game with switch defense and a different approach to center pick-and-rolls. Papagiannis can score outside, but if he goes out we lose him from rebounding and protecting the basket. I won’t give away our game plan, but our guards will have to release the tall ones faster in the next few games.”

For the exploitation of talents: I’m not a judge of everyone and I’ve been abroad for several years. I think that as many children as possible should be involved in basketball. Is it possible to have as many pieces of infrastructure as we can? As is done for example in France or Spain? This is also a political issue. As many children as possible should be motivated, because we are not a big country. But it is not only the big countries that are successful. Look at Slovenia and Montenegro for example. I think that the discussion that FIBA ​​should change something in the way of approaching major competitions is starting to become more substantial. To give the possibility to the teams to have 14 athletes and to be able to choose. I think we are mature now. It is not a reproach, people work for the good of the sport. But we can now have this discussion. The players themselves would like this».

In conclusion he said:Better do a gallop among the absentees as to whether the absence has anything to do with next year’s Olympics. There are many absences, each for a different reason».

Source: Sport Fm

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