By Eurohoops Team/ email@example.com
Paulius Jankunas ending his playing career at the conclusion of the 2021-22 season creates a massive attraction early in the 2022-23 season.
Paying tribute to the longtime captain, Zalgiris set the jersey retirement ceremony in the halftime of the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Regular Season Round 3 game versus Virtus Segafredo Bologna on October 18, the team announced Monday. The Italian outfit coming to visit marks the first home game of the new season and a special moment for both Jankunas and the fans as well.
Jankunas, 38, now serves as an assistant to Zalgiris GM Paulius Motiejunas.
Per the press release: “On the 18th of October, European basketball returns to Kaunas and Zalgirio Arena, as Zalgiris takes on Virtus Segafredo Bologna in its EuroLeague season home opener.
The first home game of Europe’s strongest basketball tournament will traditionally feature a refreshingly emotional team presentation, but the highlight will be a ceremony honoring Paulius Jankunas, who retired after last season.
The long-time Zalgiris player changed from a basketball jersey to a suit after the season and is now a part of Zalgiris’ front office.
“The end of last season was not the ending that Paulius deserved to end his career. Jankis deserves more, so a special celebration is being prepared for the first EuroLeague home game, when the long-time captain will be duly welcomed to his new position by a crowd of thousands,” said Zalgiris’ Director Paulius Motiejunas.
During the game’s halftime break, Jankunas’ number 13 jersey will go up in the rafters of the arena and join the distinguished company of Arvydas Sabonis, Modestas Paulauskas, Vladas Garastas and Jonas Kazlauskas.
Fans arriving at Zalgirio Arena will be welcomed with any available Jankunas-related merchandise or support posters. They will also be able to browse through his Zalgiris’ trophy collection or enjoy the images of Jankunas being handed out.
Zalgiris dancers will be on hand to celebrate the 15-time Lithuanian champion, and the entertainment during the quarter breaks will also revolve around Jankunas.
Tickets for these and all other Zalgiris Kaunas games in the EuroLeague and Betsafe-LKL can be purchased by visiting the Zalgiris ticketing page.”
Photo Credit: EuroleagueBasketball.net