Madrid, Fenerbahce are last to arrive
The last two teams to arrive were Real Madrid and then the only team that did not need to fly, Fenerbahce Istanbul, which bussed over from the Asian side of the city after the team’s evening practice. By the time Fenerbahce walked through the hotel doors, CSKA had finished eating dinner and its head coach, Dimitris Itoudis, shouted out to greet Zeljko Obradovic, his old boss and great friend. With the cameras focused on the two, Obradovic embraced Itoudis and then turned and hugged his wife too. And with that, all the protagonists for Friday’s semifinals were in the house! Earlier, Madrid strode confidently into the hotel as the best-dressed team in matching elegant suits and ties. The Madrid player that garnered the most attention was its youngest star, recent Rising Star Trophy winner Luka Doncic, who flashed his best smile when someone shouted "looking good, Luka!" in the lobby.
Istanbul - Wednesday, May 17, 22:53
Looking like they were here before
Welcome to the EuroLeague.net Final Four Live Blog! Here we will share all the behind-the-scenes happenings until a champion is crowned at Sinan Erdem Dome. The Final Four experience never really begins until the teams arrive. And the first team to land in Istanbul was CSKA Moscow, which a calm and collected as could be. The defending champs walked into the host hotel looking like they were businessmen on a business trip. The old saying about looking professional goes, “act like you’ve been there before.” And that’s exactly how CSKA … and shortly thereafter Olympiacos Piraeus, looked. It is a Final Four tradition to see note which player is the first to get off the bus and into the hotel and this time it was CSKA point guard Milos Teodosic followed by Andrey Vorontsevich. CSKA sent travel director Elizaveta Gorbulina a day in advance and she picked up all the hotel keys and delivered them to each player upon arrival. Every player has his own room, unlike all other teams, who mostly opted for double rooms - only one other player outside CSKA is sleeping on his own in this year's Final Four. Asked about his recent birthday, Aaron Jackson said he didn't celebrate properly "I am waiting until the end of the Final Four, and I hope I can celebrate big after this!" After the CSKA and Olympiacos players were issued their room keys – in the Reds’ case, that was done by Team Manager Christos Bafes – they went to their respective private dining rooms for dinner.
Istanbul - Wednesday, May 17, 21:22