Chus Mateo, coach of Real Madrid, did not hesitate to affirm that they have “a thorn stuck with the Baskonia” because they have “won in both games” that they have played this season. “We are facing a team that is very strong this year, playing very well, at the top of the table in both competitions, the League and the Euroleague, and that has beaten us twice. We have a thorn in our side and want to face them. We hope to have a good matchsaid Matthew.
Guard Markus Howard is one of the most important players in a roster with a lot of quality. “If there’s one thing that makes teams stay on top in such long seasons, it’s not individualities. Howard has an extraordinary levelSometimes it is unstoppable, but if Baskonia is up, it is because they are having a very good campaign as a team. They make 11 triples on average in the Euroleague, something that fits perfectly into the definition of their game.”, he explained.
The Real Madrid coach was not very clear when it came to talking about the players he could count on against the team from Vitoria. “We have to wait for tomorrow. Llull continues with his process. Rudy was unable to play due to a flu process. Yabusele has recently recovered. Tomorrow we will see who is. With Edy (Tavares) we will continue waiting. The sprain does not seem very serious, but we will see how it evolves”, he commented.
The double shifts, and more so at this point in the season, seem to be gaining more importance. “In double weeks, everything is magnified for better or worse. We face two very important rivals (Baskonia and Valencia). If we are able to win, we will be closer to the goal, but we are not thinking about the two games of the week, just the one in front of us. Baskonia is a brave bull to deal with”, said Mateo. “Against Baskonia we are 0-2 this season and our motivation is great. We have beaten Valencia three times, but that doesn’t count. They are individual matches. You always drag a past against Spanish teams. We know each other well, ”he stressed.
The good moment of Baskonia is evident from its latest results. “We focus on doing our job, because if we play at our level we can win the game. We also know how to run. If we circulate the ball well, we get released shots and we put them in, we can win. The opposing team has their weapons and we have ours.”, pointed out the Real Madrid coach. Madrid seems to have problems closing games when they have a good lead. “No rival in the Spanish league is easy and playing so many games makes you dissipate your attention at some point or relax too much if you dominate on the scoreboard. This season of 50 games that we have played so far we have lost 11. Basketball has many faces, many moments and there is much to improve, but I am happy. It is an anecdote that we are first at this point, but it shows that you are doing a good job, especially against so many teams of such a good level in both competitions”, concluded Chus Mateo.