Pablo Laso

Laso: "We'll have to play hard and be focused against Baskonia"

NEWS | 04/02/2021

"We have to just focus solely on this game and not the Copa del Rey", commented Garuba.
Pablo Laso and Usman Garuba spoke to the media to preview the EuroLeague Round 24 match-up between Real Madrid and Baskonia (Friday, 9pm CET), with the coach commenting that: “It’s a classic match because we’ve faced each other on many occasions in huge games and there’s always that great rivalry. The two teams are performing to a really high standard and they’ve been at the top table in Europe for many years now”.

“Baskonia is a very competitive team and plays with great energy and has some very versatile players. They’ve got three very different centres, are strong on pick&roll with Dragic, Vildoza and Henry and have good shooters in the shape of Giedraitis, Peters and Polonara and other players who are improving. They’re a very strong all-round team and we’ve got great respect for them. They always give us a tough game and we’re going to have to play hard and be focused right from tip-off”.

This season’s meetings
“The important thing is that we retain what makes us who we are. We’re two teams that know each other, although we mustn’t go looking back into the past because this one will be a different game”.

Laso: "The two teams are performing to a really high standard".

“One result shouldn’t be what dictates the future. I want to win tomorrow but that doesn’t mean to say that we’ll then be in better shape for the Copa del Rey. I’m just focusing on this game, I know how tough it’ll be, and we’ll then switch our focus to Estudiantes and then the Copa del Rey. A lot of my players are carrying knocks and others are recovering from injuries. It’s tough but we’ll have to be focused and ready for what lies ahead”:

Home-court advantage
“The team prepares properly for the games, regardless of whether they’re at home or on the road. However, when we're at the WiZink Center and don’t have to travel, we have more time for recovery and have better quality training sessions to try and improve as a team. The schedule is really demanding but the team should show the same focus when preparing for games, be they at home or on the road”.

Garuba: “We’ll have to play hard and not give them any advantage”
“We have to focus on the games we’ve got before the Copa del Rey to make sure we’re ready and in good shape for Thursday. Baskonia plays with great intensity from the first minute and we’ll have to be ready, not give them any advantage and play hard throughout if we’re to win”.