I want to start off by taking this opportunity to wish all my friends, family and, of course, Maccabi fans happy holidays for this Passover, the Jewish festival of freedom. It's a little tough for me that on a night when the whole family gets together to celebrate and eat the festive meal, I won't be there. But if I have to celebrate from overseas, at least it's for a good cause: Basketball.
Like always, things are fun and interesting around here. That's the life of a pro basketball player. It started as an afternoon activity and turned into a full-time career. On Tuesday, we begin our Quarterfinal Playoffs series against CSKA Moscow, which as everyone knows is one of the best teams in Europe. CSKA's results this season prove that it is a dominant and well-organized team, with a wonderful coach and great players. Some say that Maccabi comes to this series as an underdog, but for me that's a hard word to say. Hey, we're Maccabi Tel Aviv. And that says a lot not only in Israel, but also in Europe. Okay, CSKA may have the homecourt advantage and that may be very meaningful – because they have not lost at home this season in the Euroleague – but I know that we are a much better and higher-quality team than we've shown so far. We have great players, a fine coaching staff and a team manager with the biggest heart, Moni Fanan, who helps us with everything, whether it be in our professional or private lives. I really hope that everything comes together for us at such a crucial time in the season and that we can upgrade our ability before facing CSKA.
I played for three years for an Israeli club called Hapoel Galil Elyon – a distance of...
Lior Eliyahu - Tel Aviv
April 2, 2007