After a disappointing loss in Game 1 of the Eurocup Final, Gran Canaria swingman and blogger Brad Newley explains why it’s so important to stay positive as they travel to Russia for Game 2 and to finish the season with the team’s heads held high.
Hello again Eurocup fans. I’m writing just right before we travel to Russia for Game 2 of the Eurocup Finals. We played very well in patches during Game 1, but as you probably know, we had a really bad last quarter and that put us in a bit of a bad situation for the next game. But you know, we have to get on the plane, go to Russia and stay positive that we can do this. Losing a game at this stage of the season is very disappointing, because each game counts a lot, but it happens.
Khimki came out in the last quarter and they didn't miss a shot; they showed why they are in the final, and that's why they are the team they are. We had three bad minutes in the last quarter. We got lost more or less, we were missing shots and I think we got a little frustrated with ourselves. And unfortunately, that frustration led the way to easy baskets for them. The thing is that we will have to be ready for that again in the next game. We never give up, that's part of the spirit we have in the island. We're in the middle of a big challenge now and we have to try our hardest.
For Game 2 we'll have to tweak a few things. In Game 1 we played pretty solid for three quarters and then had a lapse of about 10 minutes. At the end, the game just kinda got out of hand, and if we had lost by 10 to 15 points, we would have a better chance, but they kinda exploded. We will have to play the same way, shoot a little bit better ourselves and maybe I can contribute a little bit more since I had a bit more rest for my knee, and I can help. The most important thing for us is to finish the season in a good way. We know we left a lot of things behind us, and now we have to get there and enjoy our last game of the season. We might be able to pull something off; we have to move forward. The bottom line is that we want to make our club and ourselves proud and, to say the least, end this run with our heads up.
The Eurocup has definitely improved since I played it the first time, especially since some Euroleague clubs started to join the competition after the first phase. I love the format. We have to travel a lot but, you know, it's part of being a professional, so we're cool with that. We're all very honored to be part of this competition, and we want to return to it next year.
And, of course, I cannot forget about our fans. They were really unbelievable during the first game against Khimki. For them to stay for the whole game and then welcome us back to the court after the game was unbelievable. That's why we all enjoy playing here in Gran Canaria; it's a great situation to be in. In fact, some of our fans are flying with us to Moscow for the game! It's going to be really nice to have them on the plane with us. It's kind of a gift from us to them for all the games we had to play away from home. Now they get to come with us and enjoy the experience.
And to all our Gran Canaria fans, we love you guys! Thanks for coming to all the games this year and keep on following us because we love the atmosphere you create for us at every home game!