“We were lacking concentration”

Panathinaikossnatched the win from PAOK at the OAKA arena Argyris Pedoulakis speaking of lack of concentration from the Green side of the court.

“We spoke of it prior to the game and it is an issue which surfaces a lot in the Greek League. We had little concentration and that’s a fact. Up to a certain extent it is only natural because no recesses exist and some of the guys are run down physically but mainly mentally. During the first half we performed poorly. PAOK allowed us to shoot off pick and rolls, they defended their paint and we failed to keep the correct distances, did not read correctly into these situations in order to get uncontested range from two-point distance. During the second half we read the game more appropriately in backcourt but still did not quite make the cut in offense failing to follow rotations and distances so as to get to the necessary solutions. PAOK took a risk which actually paid-off for it seeing that we had low two-point scoring stats. During the second half we made some big shots and in these is where the game was ultimately defined”.

PAOK Head Coach, Soulis Markopoulos, stated: “I would like to congratulate the players because during the greatest part of the game they followed through the guidelines they had been given down to the very last detail, except for indecisiveness in our defense; something which offered our opponent the ability to nail some unguarded shots. Had this not happen maybe it would have been a whole different ball game. Panathinaikos is one of the best teams throughout Europe , it has quite a roster and we had to outdo ourselves in order to measure up. My players performed exceptionally well. I would like to thank my colleagues for the extremely good game analysis which aided us towards catching the performance we did today. Congratulations to Panathinaikos for the victory and I wish it all the best in Greece and Europe because we want Greek teams to proceed in Europe , bearing in mind the Greek basketball’s best interest”.

Marcus Banks stated: “I believe that it was an overall good and tough game. PAOK played aggressively and I believe we had not prepared ourselves for such a tough game, such a strong opponent. They played well. We tried through the second half to do a better job, applied the game plays more appropriately, picked up the rebounds, made the shots and won”.

Leonidas Kaselakis, PAOK forward, stressed: “We knew we were to face one of the greatest European teams. In order to get away with something we had to seem competitive down to the very end. In order to make the extra step we had to have made some big time shots, which unfortunately we didn’t. Panathinaikos knows how to appeal to its opponent’s weaknesses; it was colder blooded and won. What we aspire towards is to maintain the same competitive pace in the very tough game ahead of us, next week. Our philosophy is to take it one game at a time and challenge the best possible outcome”.