2013-14Final FourSemifinal
May 16, 2014 CET: 18:00
Local time: 18:00 MEDIOLANUM FORUM

Team Stats

Ave.   Ave.
77.9 Points 79.2
33.2 Rebounds 31.6
8.5 O. Rebounds 7.8
24.7 D. Rebounds 23.8
19.0 Assists 17.9
6.1 Steals 5.8
3.1 Blocks 2.5
11.3 Turnovers 11.9
54.7 % 2PT 55.5 %
40.4 % 3PT 38.8 %
71.8 % FT 71.0 %
94.2 Index 85.8

Player Stats

Ave.   Ave.
12.6 / Weems Points 12.1 / Hickman
5.2 / Khryapa Rebounds 5.4 / Smith
1.8 / Hines OR 1.8 / Tyus
4.6 / Khryapa DR 4.2 / Smith
4.2 / Khryapa Assists 3.3 / Ohayon
0.9 / Weems Steals 0.8 / Ingles
0.8 / Hines Blocks 0.9 / Tyus
2.3 / Teodosic Turnovers 2.3 / Schortsanitis
69.0 % / Kaun 2PT 73.0 % / Tyus
60.0 % / Krstic 3PT 43.7 % / Pnini
91.9 % / Teodosic FT 84.4 % / Smith
13.3 / Weems Index 11.3 / Hickman


Ave.   Ave.
0-0 Final Four 0-0
3-2 Playoffs 3-1
12-2 Top 16 8-6
7-3 Regular Season 8-2
22-7 Overall 19-9


Crew Chief
PUKL,SASA, Slovenia

The Take

CSKA Moscow, Links

Team Page
Team Stats
Did you know, CSKA Moscow
Historic matchups vs. Maccabi Electra
Team Averages
Final Four records
Road to Milan: CSKA Moscow
International TV coverage

Maccabi Electra, Links

VIDEOS: Pre-game Interview, Sasha Kaun, Pre-game Interview, Kyle Hines
Pre-game Interview, Joe Ingles, Pre-game Interview, Tyrese Rice,

The 2014 Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four starts with a rematch of the 2006 and 2008 Euroleague finals, as CSKA Moscow and Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv face each other in a Final Four for the first time in six years. CSKA beat Maccabi twice this season and handed the Israeli powerhouse one of its toughest losses in European competition – 100-65 in Moscow. Naturally that game will be on the back of both teams' minds even though this is a completely different situation. CSKA and Maccabi face each other for the 31st time – not counting no-show games - in European competition. CSKA leads the all-time series 16-15. CSKA big man Kyle Hines has a unique chance for a historic three-peat – something that only Sarunas Jasikevicius has done since Spilt won its third consecutive Euroleague title in 1991.

Hines leads a rock-solid CSKA frontcourt which also includes two-time All-Euroleague center Nenad Krstic, Sasha Kaun, Andrey Vorontsevich and, of course, Victor Khryapa, an All-Euroleague selection and former Best Defender Trophy winner, who will see minutes at both forward spots. Kaun and Krstic have the tough mission to guard former All-Euroleague center Sofoklis Schortsanitis, the best per-minute scorer in the competition. Schortsanitis must use his power and quickness to dominate the paint, as well as be ready to share the ball when double-teamed, as David Blu, Devin Smith and Guy Pnini are always ready to pull the trigger from downtown. The matchup between Smith, a two-time All-Eurocup First Team selection, and Khryapa will be one of the big keys to this game. At the same time, Coach David Blatt can opt for the more dynamic lineup with bwin MVP for April Alex Tyus at the '5' position. Tyus and Kaun and two of the most effective players in Euroleague history, centers that play close to the basket and dunk at every opportunity available. Maccabi needs to find the way to stop Milos Teodosic and Aaron Jackson at point guard and rely on Yogev Ohayon and Tyrese Rice to do so. Not allowing Teodosic to find his rhythm will be crucial for Maccabi. At the same time, CSKA relies on Sonny Weems to make the difference at the wings with his quickness, effective step-back jumpers and overall athleticism. Weems will get plenty of help from sharp shooter Vitaly Fridzon, do-it-all swingman Vlado Micov and explosive guard Jeremy Pargo, who may see extended playing time to guard Ricky Hickman. Maccabi is versatile at both wings, as Smith, Joe Ingles and Pnini give Coach Blatt plenty of options at the wings.

CSKA will aim to run its offense through Krstic and Weems and look for Teodosic to control the game tempo and get everyone involved. Another top task for the Russian champs is finding a way to stop Schortsanitis in the low post. Maccabi needs Hickman and Smith to step up in their first-ever Final Four game, find one-on-one opportunities for Schortsanitis down low and power the offensive glass through Tyus and Andrija Zizic. This game promises great tradition, action and superb basketball!
Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Game Notes

CSKA Moscow
CSKA Moscow boasted the league’s best defense this season by limiting opponents to an average of just 69.6 points per game.
CSKA was the Turkish Airlines Euroleague leader in three-point shooting (40.4%) and assists (19.0 apg.).
Ettore Messina has used 11 different players in his starting lineup this season. No player has started every Euroleague game.
Assistant coach Dan Shamir won two Euroleague titles in the same capacity with Maccabi Tel Aviv in 2004 and 2005. He also served as Maccabi coach David Blatt’s assistant with Dynamo Moscow in 2008-09. Shamir coached Maccabi forward Guy Pnini at Hapoel Jerusalem during the 2006-07 and 2007-08 seasons.
Messina coached Maccabi shooter David Blu at Benetton Treviso during the 2004-05 season. Together they lifted the Italian Cup.
Sasha Kaun leads the Euroleague in career two-point shooting percentage. Kaun has made 302 of 430 two-point shots (70.23%). He also leads the career field goal shooting percentage list; Kaun has never attempted a three-point shot in 110 Euroleague career games. Maccabi’s Alex Tyus (68.21%) is second.
Milos Teodosic has made at least 1 three-pointer in 14 straight Euroleague games.
Teodosic is 1 three-pointer away from joining the top 10 list of triples made at Final Fours. Teodosic has made 14 threes on 38 attempts (36.8%) in his previous Final Four appearnces. With his next three, Teodosic will tie Derrick Sharp, Ibrahim Kutluay/ Dimitris Diamantidis and Ramunas Siskauskas for 10th place. Toni Kukoc (17) is eighth.  Maccabi forward David Blu also enters the Final Four with 14 career threes at this stage.
Teodosic needs 1 more steals to join a tie for 10th place on the list of most career steals at Final Four games. Teodosic has 9 steals at past Final Fours. With his next he will tie Jaka Lakovic, Marko Jaric and Anthony Parker for ninth place. Willie Sims of Maccabi lore is eighth with 12 steals.
Vitaly Fridzon has made at least 1 three-pointer in 20 straight Euroleague games. He is shooting 39 for 75 (52.0%) from downtown over that stretch.
Victor Khryapa has taken more rebounds at Final Four games than any player in competition history. He has 74 boards from 14 Final Four games, which is 1 more rebound than former teammate Matjaz Smodis.  
Khryapa enters the Final Four tied for 10th place on the list of most career assists at Final Four games. He is tied with Maccabi team manager Nikola Vujcic with 24 Final Four assists. Retired Maccabi guard Tal Burstein is ninth (25 assists) and Greek legends Nikos Galis eighth (26).
Khryapa is tied for second place on the list of most career steals at Final Four games with 18. He shares that distinction with Dimitris Diamantidis of Panathinaikos Athens. Retired CSKA star J.R. Holden is the all-time Final Four leader with 24 steals.
Khryapa was the playoffs leader in both rebounds (7.6 rpg.) and assists (5.6 apg.) per game.  
Khryapa is fifth in Euroleague history with 134 career blocked shots. Real Madrid big man Ioannis Bourousis is fourth with 135 and All-Euroleague big man Stephane Lasme of Panathinaikos (137)  is third.
Jeremy Pargo began his Euroleague career at Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv in the 2010-11 season. Pargo was named to the All-Euroleague Second Team after leading Maccabi to the Final Four in Barcelona. He also helped Maccabi win the Israeli league and Cup double. Pargo played under current Maccabi coach David Blatt and alongside current Maccabi players David Blu, Guy Pnini and Sofoklis Schortsanitis.

Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
David Blatt was the head coach of the Russian national team for six years, during which he coached six current CSKA players. Three of them – Victor Khryapa, Sasha Kaun and Vitaly Fridzon – played under Blatt on the Olympic bronze-medal winning side at the 2012 games in London. Blatt also led Russia with Khryapa to the 2007 EuroBasket titles and took EuroBasket bronze in 2011 with Khryapa, Fridzon and Andrey Vorontsevich. Aleksey Zozulin played for Blatt at EuroBasket 2009.
Blatt has used 11 different players in Maccabi’s starting lineups so far this season. No player has started every game.
David Blu has made at least 1 three-pointer in 21 straight Euroleague games.
Blu is 1 three-pointer away from joining the top 10 list of triples made at Final Fours. Blu has made 14 threes on 26 attempts (53.8%) in six previous Final Four games. With his next three, Blu will tie former teammate Derrick Sharp as well as Ibrahim Kutluay, Dimitris Diamantidis and Ramunas Siskauskas for 10th place. Toni Kukoc (17) in eighth. CSKA guard Milos Teodosic also enters the Final Four with 14 career threes at this stage.
Sofoklis Schortsanitis was a teammate of CSKA Moscow guard Milos Teodosic at Olympiacos Piraeus for three seasons between 2007 and 2010. They led the team to a pair of Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four appearances.
Schortsanitis is the Turkish Airlines Euroleague’s best scorer this season on a per-minute basis with a prorated average of 27.4 points per 40 minutes of action. Big Sofo also leads the league with 10.5 fouls drawn per 40 minutes.
Ricky Hickman was the playoffs leader in performance index rating with an average of 22.3 per game.
Alex Tyus was the playoffs leader in blocks with an average of 2 per game.
Tyus is the Turkish Airlines Euroleague leader this season in two-point shooting (73.0%) and true shooting percentage (69.7%).

Monday, May 12, 2014

Quotes Head Coaches

CSKA Moscow
"It is a big accomplishment for all of us to be one more time in the Final Four. I think we started slowly, but I think we progressed very well in the Top 16 and in the playoffs. The new players have added us more depth, experience and toughness, giving us a more balanced team this year that hopefully will fight until the last minute this year.

"I have no idea how this will affect us. i know one thing, most of you think we're a bunch of chokers because we choked two years ago in the final and last year in the semifinal. Hopefully we choked at the right time and we'll be ready for the game."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"It's extremely special to me because of the history between these two clubs and those of you that know understand significance and recognize the wonderful progress that we've all made on several different levels and basketball has been a part of that. I was fortunate to work in Russia for seven years. I am unfortunate that many of those players now play for Coach Messina and CSKA. They are a great group that did a lot for their country and a great deal for me."


CSKA Moscow
"We played twice, and beat them twice, but that does not need to mean anything. The Final Four is a specific tournament, a lot can depend on a good or a bad day a team can have. The only good thing is we know Maccabi well, and I expect a very good game, and a very good Final Four with four really good teams. Maccabi's centers Schortsanitis and Tyus are two very different players. Sofo is dominant in the paint, and Tyus is a great athlete, and both showed in the playoffs against EA7 Milan how much they mean to their team. It will be pretty difficult to stop Schortsanitis one-on-one in the paint, but I think we have a good team defense and that all together we can deal with it. Kaun and I will surely take turns on him, and I expect a successful outcome."
CSKA Moscow
"We are trying to be as focused and as prepared as we can because it will be tough. We won twice against them this season, but this game will not be anything like those two during the Top 16. This time there will be a lot more pressure, with both teams trying to play the best they can. I expect an interesting semifinal game. Knock on wood; I feel fine."
CSKA Moscow
"Of course, we have the most pressure in this game. We had a few good talks and I think we are probably more closer and together. Our recent losses stole our concentration, but we are fine right now. We have the Euroleague semifinal on the line and we are ready to play against Maccabi. First of all, we have to play physical and limit their transition, try to bang them up as much as possible. When they get second chances, they are a really good team, getting second chances and shooting the three to get their momentum going. I think that if we stop those three things, we will have a good chance to win. It is all about business, staying together and always having my teammates' backs."
CSKA Moscow
"This is my second Final Four and it is really nice to be back. This is always a good experience for all of us. Unfortunately, I don't have the best memories of my first Final Four in London, so I hope I will remember it in a better way this time around. We played against Maccabi twice in the Top 16 and beat them in both games. They had a lot of injured players and only played with one big guy inside - Sofo. It is unusual for us, because they spread the court a lot. Also, this is a completely different game. Everything goes down to one game and we have to put everything that we have. We may be favorites on paper, but we have to prove it on the court."
CSKA Moscow
“Big game. Big Game. We gotta come out ready and focused and hopefully we get a win. At the end of the day it’s all about coming in ready and being prepared. The other three teams are gonna be ready. I don’t think it’s very different from any other game. The baskets are still circles, the balls are still round, the lines are still the same; I don’t think it’s very different from any other game. We prepare according to what they do and what we see. We watched a lot of film. We have to be ourselves and play our game and focus on what we do.”
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"I think we have a good chance. We need to simplify our game and play fast, because they like to and are used to playing slow. If we play good defense and force them into some mistakes than they are used to, we can do it."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"CSKA is a strong team, with a great lineup and we have hard work ahead of us. The Euroleague Final Four is the best stage that you can play on, and it takes a lot mentally and physically out of every player. We lost twice against them, but this is a completely different game, a completely different situation, not everything that happened during the season applies. It is a brand new reality. We need to be focused and do our best."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"We are looking forward to the game against CSKA - it is going to be a tough game. I think we prepared really well and we are looking forward to playing tomorrow. The way we play in transition and attack the basket is our main strength. It is one game so everybody's chances are equally the same. We are seen as the underdog and that could be a good thing. We have to play smart; they are a team that plays in the paint a lot so we have to make sure that we don't get stupid fouls and try to play at our tempo. I feel very honored to be in the Final Four. You never know when you are going to get back here. For me, it is definitely a privilege to be here and I hope I can continue to do this in my career."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"We have hard work in front of us. We watched and learned from the videos of the previous games against CSKA. We have made some adjustments. I think we can fix and improve a lot from those games, starting with our running game. We are very focused and trying to relax. They have a very deep and experienced team that has already been in every situation."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"It is a big opening game. There are no easy opponents at the Final Four, and it is only one game that takes you into the finals, so chances are more or less 50-50. It does not matter who is in a better or worse form, there is no home-court advantage for any team. We play on the neutral court, so the little details will decide the outcome. I expect both teams to play tough defensively, and the game to go down to the wire."

Maccabi rallies from 15 down to stun CSKA, advance to championship game!

Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv booked its date with basketball history on Friday as the five-time continental champion fought back from a 15-point deficit late in the third quarter to beat CSKA Moscow 67-68. Tyrese Rice’s basket with 5.5 seconds left secured Maccabi its spot in Sunday’s Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four Championship Game. In the semifinal showdown at the Mediolanum Forum in Milan with CSKA - a rematch of the 2006 and 2008 Euroleague finals - Tel Aviv’s David Blu scored 15 points on 5 three-pointers which jumped him into a tie for the fifth most triples in Final Fours. Blu has made 19 of 35 in seven Final Four games. Rice finished with 13 points while Ricky Hickman and Alex Tyus both scored 10 points. Maccabi will be playing in its 15th final and shooting for its first title since 2005. CSKA meanwhile will have to live with another nightmare collapse at the Final Four and settle for the Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four Third Place Game despite Sasha Kaun collecting 14 points, 5 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 blocks. Milos Teosodic added 12 points. Victor Khryapa, whose costly turnover gave Maccabi the chance to win the game, scored 9 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. CSKA big man Kyle Hines scored 6 against Maccabi but lost his bid for a historic three-peat – something that only Sarunas Jasikevicius has done since Spilt won its third consecutive Euroleague title in 1991.

First quarter: Kaun dominates inside for Muscovites

Ricky Hickman opened the scoring at the Final Four with a driving layup, and Kaun answered on the other end with a basket from close range. Yogev Ohayon scored on a fastbreak for Maccabi, but free throws from Kaun and Andrey Vorontsevich gave CSKA a 6-4 lead. Kaun continued to be the biggest factor on the floor, scoring again from close range, then blocking Aley Tyus’s attempt, before his tip-in made it 10-4. Ohayon’s jumper snapped an 8-0 run, but Kaun scored again from close range before Kyle Hines made a short, but tough, fadeaway jumper for a 14-6 lead. Joe Ingles was quick to answer for Maccabi, before Sofoklis Schortsanitis muscled his way for a pair of baskets. That was not the end of Maccabi’s run as Hickman raced for a fastbreak layup that evened the score at 14-14. After a timeout taken by CSKA coach Ettore Messina, Vladimir Micov hit a turnaround jumper to snap the Moscow club’s drought. Tyrese Rice banked in a floater to tie things up again, but Victor Khryapa scored a reverse layup and Sonny Weems split free throws for CSKA, rounding out the scoring in the first quarter at 19-16.

Second quarter: Despite Maccabi’s threes, CSKA remains ahead

Aaron Jackson’s put-back started things, but David Blu hit the first three-pointer of the game to make it 21-19. Khryapa’s dunk and a baseline jumper from Milos Teodosic kept CSKA in front, but Blu nailed another three-pointer to keep Maccabi within 25-22. Maccabi tried to put extra pressure on CSKA’s ball handlers with the occasional full-court press, and after Khryapa’s jumper, Ohayon buried a third Maccabi shot from downtown. But Teodosic answered with a triple-plus-free throw, making it 31-25. Tyus had a tip-in to keep Maccabi in range, but Micov and Kaun protected CSKA’s paint, not allowing the Israeli champs to get any closer. A third personal foul for Schortsanitis was a new issue Maccabi had to deal with, and free throws from Teodosic and Vorontsevich made it the largest margin of the evening, 35-27. In the final minute of the half, Rice split foul shots, then drove for a layup, but Vitaly Fridzon sank a three-pointer, giving CSKA a 38-30 halftime lead.

Third quarter: Difference reaches 15 before Maccabi hints at comeback

The margin reached 10 points at the start of the third quarter, when Weems threw an alley-oop pass to Kaun’s for a dunk. Blu hit a three-pointer before both teams failed to convert on several trips down the floor. It was CSKA that struck next; layups from Micov and Hines made it 44-33, putting the Russian side in control. Devin Smith nailed a triple for Maccabi, but after Teodosic and Tyus traded baskets, Fridzon knocked down a three to restore an 11-point lead. Maccabi’s shot was not falling, and even though Smith came through with another tip-in, Hines answered right back with a second-chance basket of his own. After Krstic nailed a long jumper (his first points of the night), and Weems drove for a little floater, the lead had reached 55-40. However Maccabi managed to cut the deficit in the final minute of the quarter. Rice made free throws, and Hickman buried a triple, making it 55-45.

Fourth quarter: Blu, Rice complete another Maccabi miracle in Milan

Rice continued the run from the end of the third quarter, driving through a crowd for a layup to start the fourth. Kaun continued to be the presence inside, banking it in from two meters, but Tyus fought back with a pair of baskets, including a put-back dunk to make it 57-51, as the Maccabi fans raised the level of the noise to another lever. Khryapa briefly silenced them with a corner triple, but Blu nailed one of his own, keeping Maccabi at the same distance, 60-54. Teodosic made a mid-range jumper, but Hickman’s three-pointer cut the deficit to 62-57 with less than four minutes remaining. Maccabi did not allow a basket for almost three minutes, and Rice drove for a layup that made it a 3-point game. Krstic ended CSKA’s drought, battling under the rim for a tough layup, but Tyus made a put-back for 64-61 with a minute to go. Weems split free throws, and after Smith answered with a layup that cut it to 2 points, Weems sank an off-the-dribble jumper from 5 meters away, giving CSKA a 67-63 lead with 19.2 seconds on the clock. The game was far from over, however. After a Maccabi timeout, Blu hit a three-point shot that made it 67-66, then Blu stole the ball and passed to Rice, who raced for a game-winning layup with 5.5 seconds left. Weems last shot was off and Mediolanum Forum’s yellow majority erupted.

Tyrece Rice and Alex Tyus celebrates - Maccabi Electra - Final Four 2014
Friday, May 16, 2014
Igor Petrinovic, Euroleague.net in Milan
Attendance: 11843 (Tentative)
By Quarter1234
CSKA Moscow19191712
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv16141523
End of Quarter1234
CSKA Moscow19385567
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv16304568
CSKA Moscow
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 TEODOSIC, MILOS 27:52 12 3/4 1/5 3/3   6 6 2 1 2     4 4 14
5 MICOV, VLADIMIR 11:47 4 2/2       3 3     1 1   2 1 6
7 FRIDZON, VITALY 14:52 6   2/4     1 1 1   1     3   2
9 JACKSON, AARON 14:16 2 1/1 0/2   1   1           3   -2
11 PARGO, JEREMY DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
12 KRSTIC, NENAD 15:28 5 2/8   1/2 2 2 4   1 2   1   4 4
13 WEEMS, SONNY 31:52 6 2/8 0/5 2/4 1 2 3 6   3   3 2 2 -4
14 ZOZULIN, ALEKSEY DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
20 VORONTSEVICH, ANDREY 19:17 3   0/2 3/4   2 2     1     1 2 2
24 KAUN, SASHA 22:25 14 6/7   2/2 2 3 5   3 1 2   1 3 24
31 KHRYAPA, VICTOR 28:45 9 3/5 1/2   1 9 10 3 1 1     3 3 19
42 HINES, KYLE 13:26 6 3/4   0/1 1 1 2       1   1 1 7
Team           2 4 6     1         5
Totals 200:00 67 22/39 4/20 11/16 10 33 43 12 6 13 4 4 20 20 77
        56.4% 20% 68.8%
Min: Minutes played; Pts: Points; 2FG M-A: 2-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); 3FG M-A: 3-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); FT M-A: Free Throws (Made-Attempted); Rebounds: O (Offensive), D (Defensive), T (Total); As: Assists; St: Steals; To: Turnovers; Bl: Blocks (Fv: In Favor / Ag: Against); Fouls: Cm (Commited), Rv (Received); PIR: Performance Index Rating
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 RICE, TYRESE 23:59 13 5/9 0/1 3/4   5 5 2 1       3 7 19
6 SMITH, DEVIN 22:07 7 2/4 1/3   1 8 9     1     3 2 10
7 HICKMAN, RICKY 33:55 10 2/7 2/3 0/1 1 2 3 1   2   1   5 9
8 INGLES, JOE 15:11 2 1/1 0/2             1     1 1 -1
9 TYUS, ALEX 22:38 10 5/8     4 1 5       3 1 4 1 11
10 PNINI, GUY 17:20     0/2     3 3           2 1  
11 ZIZIC, ANDRIJA 2:20   0/1           1              
12 OHAYON, YOGEV 16:01 7 2/4 1/2     1 1 4 1 2   1 2   5
13 BLU, DAVID 31:57 15 0/2 5/9     2 2 1 1 1     2   10
14 ALTIT, BEN DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
21 SCHORTSANITIS, SOFOKLIS 14:32 4 2/6   0/1   2 2     2 1 1 3 3 -1
22 HARARI, ARAD DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Totals 200:00 68 19/42 9/22 3/6 6 24 30 9 3 9 4 4 20 20 62
        45.2% 40.9% 50%
Head coach: BLATT, DAVID

Head Coaches

CSKA Moscow
"Obviously my congratulations to Maccabi for this win. I don’t have much to say. It’s hard to be up for 39 minutes and then lose it in the end. For the first three quarters we played with good discipline, we were controlling the rebounding and the tempo of the game. In the last quarter we didn’t do any of those things. We gave up 23 points. We made a lot of little mistakes and that summed up one after another and that led us to losing the game. I’ve seen enough shit in my life and this is serious, but it’s handle able. This is painful. This is different. "
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"I can’t tell you much. It’s hard for me to even talk about it right now. First of all, respect and appreciation to CSKA, this coach and their assistants. I’ve worked with both of them. And the great players. I feel we beat a better team than us today and we did it in amazing fashion. There are games that you always remember and this will be one of those for us. And I hope we can take that momentum into the final because we will need it.

"At 15 down, I said we just have to gain a little bit of ground before the end of the quarter. It was too much to say we can still win this game. We got within striking distance and the most important thing I said was with five minutes left. l didn’t talk tactics. I said, ‘look at the scoreboard. Remember when it was 10. Now it’s five. Now they have the monkey on their back.’

"I thought we had a chance. I never felt that we couldn’t win that game. We’ve done this before, maybe not against such a formidable opponent like CSKA. But no, I didn’t think it was over and I didn’t hear the fat lady singing.

"When we stole the ball [on the inbounds play with 13.5 seconds left], my eyes went black. I didn’t see anything. I don’t remember the play that Tyrese Rice made. All I said was, wow, we’re going to win the game. It has to be. But I still haven’t seen the shot.

"I will tell you who the best player was today, that was the fans. I walked into the gym and it was yellow. I thought I was in Nokia Arena. What respect to the fans."


CSKA Moscow
"We controlled the game, then they put pressure on us making a couple of late runs, making big shots including that incredible one by David Blu. They made the big plays, we didn't, turning the ball over. We had the control of the contest for 39 minutes, but basketball's 40. In the end, Maccabi did what they were supposed to do. Pressure? Everybody feels pressure in a Final Four, when you're playing to win the title."
CSKA Moscow
"They wanted it more than we did. We didn't execute our offense; they made shots and we turned the ball over. We cannot do that, especially in an important game like this. We didn't execute well down the stretch like we have been doing all year and it cost us tonight; it cost us a loss. We gave it away, of course we did. We had the game won and all we had to do is stay together and play hard as a team down the stretch. And we didn't do that."
CSKA Moscow
"I don't know what happened; I think we stopped playing. It is hard to say because we were playing well. There is nothing to say; when you have a game in your hands, leading by 15 points and everything goes well for us, they started to make some shots and tried to go all or nothing, and won. You cannot point our one or two bad plays; we were playing really well and stopped playing for 6-7 minutes. It has been our biggest mistake all season. Sometimes we stop playing for a few minutes and that caused us to lose the game."
CSKA Moscow
"Tough loss. We didn't play well in the last quarter. We made some mistakes and let them come back in the game. We made many mistakes and I think we gave it away. It is tough, but we have to bounce back from this and try to get ready for the next game. They had great intensity and great support. Their crowd allowed them to think they could win the game. There is noone to blame but us. We let them come back in the fourth quarter."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"Unbelievable. I just saw the one on one situation, and tried to go and make the play. Plain and simple. This means everything. This is everything. This is what you play basketball for, to be in these situations, with game-winning shots to go to the championship game. You can't write a script any better than that."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"We've been in that situation many times before. We can play very well in the second half, adjusting during the halftime. I'm just really proud of everybody. CSKA has plenty of big, strong guys packing the paint, they never give easy baskets. In the last quarter I tried to do different things, to find the holes in their defense, getting some offensive rebounds. Just do those things that help a team to win."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"Is Milan a magic place for us? I don't know about magic, we know that we all kept fighting, we never stopped playing to the end of the clock. We showed that anything can happen. We felt confident coming here: CSKA played a great game, we were just able to make the right plays when we needed."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
" I think this is a testament to our team. Everybody choses to fight, no matter the situation we are in. And we continue to grow throughout the year. Being in this type of situation before, especially in here in Game 1 against Milan, everybody kind of grew up, and realized that the spirit of Maccabi, the history of the club and out great fans can carry you a long way. We have great coaches, great management, they always support us and that keeps us confident in our abilities and our work. We fought out some pretty impressive games in this building. We came here, everybody considered us an underdog without a chance, but we always believed in our preparation and feel like we can compete with anybody. We came here to win."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"This feels great. To get a win like that, it been done all year. We fought all year. Team and players and lots of people have written us off, but we stuck with what we believed in those games. We play on size, we fight, we just do whatever we can. We are not willing to lose and it is a pleasure to play on this team. Now, we are one game away."
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