Kostas Charalampidis talked to the Press during today’s media day at the “PAOK Sports Arena” in view of tomorrow’s game against Zaragoza for the 6th day of the 4th group of the BCL (20/11, 18:00 CET).
PAOK’s coach pointed out that his team wants to exhaust all chances for qualification to the next round of the competition, while he also addressed the playing ID he wants to give his team.
“It’s true that they are a very good team with both offensive and defensive principles and very good operation on the floor. They are a really athletic team, that knows what they want on the court and they are very competitive in all their games”.
On whether he remembers anything from the European Cup Winners Final in 1991 against CAI Zaragoza: «Just like everyone else, I was also watching the game on TV. I have a lot of memories. It was a different era and we were enjoying a real basketball city in Thessaloniki. However, we have to have our feet rooted in reality and face all of our issues. I think we need to be competitive against a very good team, to exhaust all the chances there are to qualify to the next round of the competition
On whether the preparation is more difficult, when an important game for the EKO Basket League follows, like the one against Rethymno on Saturday: «The truth is there is a certain difficulty, we need to manage the competitive state of the team and the players. We need to be ready every three days. We played on Sunday against Peristeri and we are going to have played two more games till Saturday. I think the players know what the situation is and they will have to be ready».
On the team’s playing ID: «We want to create and maintain a playing ID. What the guys need to do, is that they should not stop fighting for any reason and at any part of the game. That’s the ID we should be displaying at all times. From there on, there are other competitive elements that it’s not possible to assimilate in such a short time. It takes time, we don’t have it and we try through these few practices we get to have during the week, to be adding little things, so at some point later on, all of these to be able and work during a game».
On whether the games against Rethymno and Panionios are practically the ones to decided half of PAOK’s season with the EKO Basket League: «They are important games, just like some of the previous ones were, just like some of the following ones are going to be. Right now we don’t have the luxury to say which games are very important or less so. For us the fact is only one, that we need to reach a point when we come back, because we haven’t had the beginning we had wanted».
On JeQuan Lewis: «He did not practice yesterday as a precaution. It’s not something serious, he’s going to be playing tomorrow».