By Eurohoops team/ firstname.lastname@example.org
With Unicaja Malaga up by four and few seconds remaining in the game against Barcelona, Joan Plaza saw his MVP Dani Diez fouling Petteri Koponen and sending him to the line. It was a kinda peculiar decision that was addressed by the head coach of Malaga in the post-game press conference.
“Sometimes we are not able to control our emotions and I am responsible. We win or lose in close finals. I accept (the fact) that we are losing many tight finals because we also win many,” Plaza said.
Regarding the victory over Barcelona, Plaza mentioned the following:
“Logically, we are happy because we won a EuroLeague game, at home, against an opponent like Barcelona. Further than these three facts, we managed to win in the condition we were. The physical condition the team had did not look like we could compete against Barcelona with this level of physical contact. We were able to return from two runs against us, which means that the team did not lose track at any moment. I believe that, in the stats that show effort – steals, rebounds – we were better than them despite our physical condition. We were able to put our will to win first, ahead of their pain, so I am really thankful to my players. Moreover, they shot with better percentages from two and three-point range, we only shot better from the free throw line. That made things difficult, because they were hitting a lot of shots, they had 60% three-point shooting at halftime. Even when we recovered on defense, they were getting comfortable three-point shots. We were able to limit that a bit in the second half, but not enough. We have to have more order in indirect screens to ask for switches. Navarro needs no time to shoot and we all should know that. We allowed some advantages and that did not allow us to compete better. Our is desire to compete until the final day, until we have no chance to qualify to the playoffs. We want to keep competing at the highest level and that is our intention in our next game in Bamberg, Germany.”