Maccabi Fox Tel Aviv will host tonight (21:00, live on Sport5 - channel 55) Panathinaikos as part of the 15th fixture of the EuroLeague season. The Yellow & Blue landed Wednesday evening after the away victory over Zenit St. Petersburg, holding a 10:4 record in the top European competition. On the other end, Pana beat Fenerbahce after a tight clash, as it kept them in fifth place with a 9-5 record.
Once again, Maccabi will miss tonight Omri Casspi, Nate Wolters, Tarik Black, and John DiBartolomeo due to injuries. Aaron Jackson, The new Yellow & Blue signing will join the squad next week.
"We will do our best to be ready. All EuroLeague teams play two games this week, which means everyone is in the same circumstances", Explained coach Giannis Sfairopoulos concerning the team being fatigued. "We want to come in mentally ready, fighting for our fans that will be pushing us to get the win".
"They've been playing well lately", said Sfairopoulos about his opponents. "They have good and experienced players that play top-level basketball. They added (Tyrese) Rice and (Jimmer) Fredette, players that add to their team. We need to respect their whole roster, they've been the best offensive team this EuroLeague season. We need to fight hard to match up to our standards. Rick Pitino is an excellent coach, as all the European coaches respect him".
"They have a lot of players. Deshaun Thomas can really shoot the ball, he is a good player. Still, it will be a team effort", Said Angelo Caloiaro, who scored 20 points and snagged 11 rebounds in the home win over Panathinaikos last season. "The defense is a big difference this season, when you get stops, it's easier to get on transition. It's another game, we always focus on the game that is in front of us".