Czech basketball players react to loss to Greece at the 2022 European Basketball Championship

BERLIN. The representatives of the Czech Republic say goodbye to the favorite Greece 2022 European Basketball Championship with a loss in the eighth finals. However, they can be very satisfied with their performance in the match.

“I am proud of our players. They gave everything, but we played against a great team,” said Czech coach Ronen Ginzburg for ČT Šport.

“I think we have shown that we can fight and that we can be proud of our achievement,” said team leader Tomáš Satoranský after the game.

At the start of the tournament, there was an unpleasant loss to Poland, making it difficult for the Czech Republic to plan for a better placement in the group, and thus a match with an easier opponent in the round of 16.

“If you had asked me at the beginning of the summer, I would have considered finishing in the eighth finals as a disappointment. Our goals were much higher,” revealed Satoranský.

“But we have to keep our feet on the ground and see how everything has developed for us. I didn’t know if I would be here at all and we also had other injuries.

Then came the loss to Poland. I’m glad we finally made it to Berlin and gave the Greeks a hard time as one of the favourites,” said the new Barcelona quarterback.

Greece scored up to 38 points in the match after turnovers and repechages. They had seven offensive rebounds left in the game. The Czech basketball players impressed in the game with a success rate of 47.6 percent on three-pointers.

So far, no team in the tournament has kept Greece at 63 points after playing three-quarters, while also leading them by four points. In the end, the Czech Republic lost the match with 88:94.

The Czech coach revealed after the game that he sees Greece as the number one favorite in the rest of the competition.

“I think they have a good chance of doing that. They certainly have weaknesses, but I think they are the best candidate to win the EuroBasket,” said coach Ginzburg.

He also remembered the surprise of the tournament that took place before their match, when the Italians knocked out Serbia.

“I think the great thing about this tournament is that it is very unpredictable. Obviously Greece is one of the better teams, one of the favourites, but you saw Italy against Serbia, other matches where even the outsiders had a chance to surprise.

I feel like it’s hard to give tips on who will win. Greece is waiting for Germany, it will be a very difficult game because Germany is playing a great tournament, so it is difficult to predict anything.”

Satoransky played the lead, but silently

The main player of the Czech national basketball team, Tomáš Satoranský, was injured before the start of the tournament and it was not certain whether he would participate, or even be in the nomination.

He played just 17 minutes in the first game of the tournament against Poland.

“Hats off to Saty for how he handled it and how he handled it all. It can’t be a nice feeling for him. You could see he was limited and he was trying to do what he could,” said Czech captain Vojtěch Hruban. to CT Šport after the game against Poland.

“We cannot expect him to provide ten assists and triple-double every game with such a leg. Unfortunately, we cannot replace him at the moment,” said Hruban.

Then Satoranský rested for two games. In the most important and final game for group progress with Israel, he was given up to 33 minutes on the board. And the result?

He was two rebounds away from the tournament’s only triple-double. He recorded 14 points, 11 assists and 8 rebounds.

He didn’t give up even in the round of 16. He scored three points, added eight rebounds and broke the EuroBasket record for number of assists in one game since FIBA ​​began recording these stats in 1995.

“I am very proud of my teammates and also of the coaches. Against the favorite of the tournament we played our best game ever in the championship. I feel good about our last two encounters,” said Satoranský after the game.

EuroBasket’s Instagram account didn’t even list him among the best players of the day.

A comment also caught the eye, in which a fan compared Satoranský and Veselý’s round of 16 performance to Utah Jazz legends John Stockton and Karl Malone.

However, it is necessary to remember Satoranský’s form in the passing game throughout the tournament. In total, he recorded forty-four assists at EuroBasket 2022 to just fifteen turnovers.

In his last season in the NBA, he also impressed with this great stat. In the second half of the 2021/22 season, he recorded 4.9 assists and 1 turnover per game in Washington.

In the first half, the tactics worked for Giannis

Greece star and two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Giannis Antetokounmpo drew the most attention in the match. Before the game, it was decided whether he would go into the game due to an injury.

He injured his ankle in the last group match against Estonia. Photos of him with ice packs on a sofa appeared on social networks.

After the game, he limped as he went to the locker room. Some feared he had sprained his ankle, but coach Dimitris Itoudis reassured Greek fans.

“Giannis wouldn’t have started the game anyway. He was doing classic rehabilitation. I don’t know why there is such a fuss about it,” he added.

Antetokounmpo scored only 4 points in the first half of the game against the Czech Republic. In the second it was already 27.

“We were building a wall against him. That was something we had to do. We also had to take risks. However, the Greeks were able to knock down the shots,” said Tomáš Satoranský after the game.

VIDEO: Clips of Giannis’ actions in the match with the Czech Republic

He had a 0/6 shooting from outside the perimeter until the end of the match. In the last minutes of the game he hit the nail in the coffin with two striking three-pointers in a row.

“I think they got a little lucky in the end. Giannis hit twice from three-pointers, while he didn’t score anything from long range all the previous run. Unfortunately, that probably made all the difference,” said 33-year-old representative Patrik Auda after the game. .

“We have nothing to be ashamed of. It went all the way to the end, we had a chance to win. In the end they hit two or three and Giannis showed what kind of player he is.

If we have to say goodbye to the tournament with such a match, we will take it. We finished a stage earlier than we wanted, but that’s because of the start,” underlined Czech captain Vojtěch Hruban.

“We tried to make him shoot from difficult positions. In the second half he already withdrew under the basket and started to share the ball more,” said Czech center Jan Veselý, who finished the game with 15.8 points per game. The team’s most valuable player was at the tournament.

“It is impossible to keep him out for 40 minutes. He is not a youth player. He is a two-time NBA MVP. He showed quality and found a way to overcome our strategy and take risks,” added the new Barcelona linchpin.

Referees are criticized

When the new FIBA ​​rules are combined with not the best referees who don’t whistle the matches of the prestigious EuroLeague, the result could be negative for the quality of the game.

The Czech Republic coach also complained about this after the game with Greece: “It’s no secret that the FIBA ​​referees are not that good,” said coach Ronen Ginzburg.

“They made 29 free throws and we only made nine. They sometimes have too much respect for big stars,” the Czech coach said after the game.

Just before the tournament, even Giannis’ teammate Tyler Dorsey announced a similar problem.

“We didn’t have that many referee decisions in our favor. Giannis made 10 out of 14 free throws. No other player on our team shot a single free throw. So it’s an eye opener for me,” Tyler Dorsey revealed at the press conference. after the game with Serbia.

Coach Itoudis also caught his eye at the time: “I don’t know what’s going on, but they should watch the recording of our game. Giannis can’t be the only one shooting free throws for our team,” he added.

VIDEO: Tyler Dorsey at the press conference after the game with Serbia

Before Dorsey left, the journalist asked why he was reacting.

“I don’t know what that means, that’s up to the refs,” Dorsey replied.

“I’m just looking at the stats and I’m surprised. How many games does one player shoot free throws for a team? I’ve never seen a game like this in my career,” Dorsey continued.

In the match against Greece, the Czech coach got one technical foul for unsportsmanlike conduct, the other was for the entire Czech bench.

“I think the umpires have been ordered by the supervisor to give more (technical fouls) because they could lose control of the tournament,” eska coach Ginzburg revealed.

“We are not the only ones in the tournament to notice that some players are just treated like stars. There were controversial situations that we don’t agree with, but that’s part of basketball,” said Ondřej Balvín.

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