Any coach that have coached in a final four, would probably tell you that there are probably some recurring statements in the locker room every now and then, with the “we’re only 80 minutes away from a title being” one of them. Essentially we can go on and on and on about phrases taken from locker room speeches during the final fours, but truth to be told there’s a lot more to this final four (and in any final four), yes even more than X’s and O’s.
It goes without saying and still when you’re coaching for so long you’re bound to eventually face one of your former players and assistant coaches against, it is a well-known fact that Coach Zeljko Obradovic, has a lot of love for his former students in this final four, but make no mistakes with La Zocima\La Decima\first title ever are on the line all bets are off and so are the gloves.
We’ve gotten used to seeing Zoc’s teams playing great basketball and especially when it counted the most they were there, they stepped up, so what might go against him? The prophecies told a long time ago in Greece states that Coach Zoc does not win on even years only on odd ones, if you add to that that he has yet to win back to back titles and you’re getting a great opportunity to break that jinx, and the special thing about it is the coaches that he will have to face in order to win the EuroLeague- Infinity War indeed.
Usually people like to talk about the past, we glorify it and we sincerely believe that back then times were better (yes that’s about the time to go and listen again to SUNSCREEN), at the same time we can say that when talking basketball this is not only the case, and when looking to see previous encounters it’s usually in order to reminisce as sometimes the numbers speaks for themselves simply for the fact that an existing record between two clubs might imply on the strength of the dynasty in comparison to the opponent they are facing.
But what happens when both clubs who are already considered as two of the most decorated clubs in the history of European basketball have yet to meet in the final four of the current era?, who has the advantage and who takes it? One thing is for sure the CSKA Moscow – Real Madrid semifinal is all sorts of important and not just for the La Decima that’s at stake, and you really have to admit it that there’s something symbolic and even magical that coach Zoc has already won 9 EuroLeague titles one of which was with Real Madrid who are looking for their tenth which means that we also have an amazing race.
The New Age Miracle:
CSKA have earned themselves the nickname off the frequent flyers as we’re talking about a club that has more final four appearances in the new era than any other, and even though they are marked every year by many as the team that’s supposed to make it to the F4, this year as good as they are the fact that Sergio came back the way that he did makes their semifinal clash to a more than interesting one and that’s regardless of Chacho facing his former teammates and coach.
The phrase “Zalgiris Miracle” was coined during the 2003/04 season, with Saras being a player of Maccabi, 14 years have passed and one of the greatest winners of European basketball is coaching Zalgiris and is (Cliché spoiler) possibly 80 minutes away from winning a title. Rest a sure that should Saras will bring back the EuroLeague trophy back to Lithuania (first since 1999) the phrase Zalgiris miracle will take on a whole new different meaning. Though we do have to admit should Zalgiris win, it will not surprise anyone simply for the way they look and play and well most of all coached. But it’s always fun to write a new chapter in the history of European basketball.
So who you got?