Kostas Tsartsaris and Kostas Kaimakoglou were the two Panathinaikos’ players who spoke to the mass media both from Greece and Israel who had come to the OAKA indoors arena tonight. Both players underlined the importance of the fans’ attendance, but also that of tomorrow’s game.
“This is a “do or die” game; a game of life or death; it is a final. Victory leads to the qualification to the Final Four. We are not allowed to make the mistakes we made in the games we lost in this series. We must compete the way we did in the fourth game; get on the court as strong as we well should. We will all be ready. We know each other. There can be no secrets and we must generally speaking avoid turnovers. It is necessary for our attention span to be strong from the beginning to the end of this game. Certainly, the presence of our fans will also be important for us. They always support us and will give us the boost we need. They are our sixth player and stand by the team.”
Kaimakoglou was crystal clear in what he had to say in view of tomorrow’s crucial game: “It is good that some days have gone by since the previous game. On one hand we took a breather, but on the other hand we shed a lot of “sweat” on the court these past days; both on the court and watching the video, during which there are also very important things taking place. What we are looking for is for the things we say and prepare to happen on the arena, in other words to make what we say happen. This is definitely a final. We brought the series back by making it 2-2, which is something important, but it does not mean something on its own. We need one more victory in order to accomplish our goal. And to get to that victory we must fight for it from the very first second, play tough; be well energized on the court, and run. We also need the fans. We want them to help us. The fact that the tickets were sold out in a blink of an eye says a lot. We want to press them both in defense and offense, to get our energy oozing on both ends of the court, and in this part the fans will play a significant role. Their cheering and their applause are very important elements for us.”