Ataman confirms Juancho’s return: “We need the best out of all our players”

2024-05-06T17:31:59+00:00 2024-05-06T17:31:59+00:00.

Nikola Miloradovic

06/May/24 17:31

Panathinaikos head coach Ergin Ataman stated that Juancho Hernangomez will help the team in Game 5 against Maccabi Tel Aviv

By Eurohoops Team/

It’s do-or-die time in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Playoffs. Six teams will compete for three spots at the 2024 Berlin Final, and among them are Panathinaikos AKTOR and Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv.

The Athens side forced Game 5 with a win in Belgrade, and they’ll face Maccabi at OAKA Arena—with Juancho Hernangomez’s help.

According to Panathinaikos head coach Ergin Ataman, the Spaniard, who missed two games in the Serbian capital due to a calf injury, is back with the team.

Juancho will be in Game 5 tomorrow,” Ataman initially stated. “It was a very good series; now we have home advantage again with the big win in Belgrade. We won a lot of big games this year in OAKA. Maccabi is also a very big team, and we will play at 100% to win the game. Maccabi is a very attacking team that scores a lot. I’m not thinking of limiting Maccabi to a certain number of points. I just want us to score more than them.

John DiBartolomeo will participate for Maccabi, while the Israelis will wait for Wade Baldwin until the final moment.

I always talk about my team and not about the opponent. We will see which players will be on the floor and play our game. It is not important for me to know which of the opponents will play or not. We have to improve and not repeat the mistakes of the previous matches, but honestly, I don’t want to change my whole strategy.

He also touched on Ioannis Papapetrou’s huge contribution during the Playoffs.

We have players with character in every match. Some players play well, and some perform lower than usual. Tomorrow, it will be important to get the best performance from all our players.”

Panathinaikos made a huge improvement compared to last season, going from being second to last to second, but Ataman is still unsatisfied.

Tomorrow will be a difficult game. I think we deserve to be in this position for the whole season; we played good basketball and finished in second place, which is a great success for Panathinaikos. But we want more,” Ergin Ataman concluded.