“The toughest opponent is always the one that has not won” Evans & Maccabi look forward to Zalgiris

Oct 26, 2021 | Holyland Hoops

Maccabi Tel Aviv takes on Zalgiris Tuesday evening (21:05) at Yad Eliyahu as the Yellow & Blue will look to build upon their two straight Euroleague wins while the visitors ae still looking for their first victory of the season.


While Ioannis Sfairopoulos’s squad sits at 3-2, Jure Zdovc recently took over the reins at Zalgiris and sports a record of 0-5 as they desperately search for this first win.

“We play a very important game, very difficult, because we know that Zalgiris is trying to find its first EuroLeague win. They are coming with all available players except for Lauvergne to come to a fight. We have to be concentrated, I don’t like surprises. I discussed that with my players already, we know that they will come to play tough and we will be ready for a game in which we need to show our quality and our will to win. We have to play smart in offense.”

Keenan Evans who is playing in his first Euroleague campaign also spoke about making sure that Maccabi doesn’t fall into complacency, “As coach says, just like it happens in life, the toughest opponent is always the one that has not won. They are very hungry. I don’t really care if we’re favorites or not, we just know we have to come out and play hard.”

Ioannis Sfairopoulos – Photo Credit: Dov Halickman

Sfairopoulos continued talking about the dangers of facing a team that is coming in with a winless record, “When you start 0-5 you’re not happy and you fight really hard. That’s why I said I don’t want to be surprised. They are more ready to play the game with players back. You can’t think that they are not good because of their record, we have to be mentally tough, serious and perform the best that we can because otherwise anything can happen.”

Evans said that the key to the game will be to make sure Maccabi gets off to a good start, “We have to have a strong start and not dig ourselves a hole, come focused and be prepared for a big fight to keep them at bay early.”

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