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The story of two EuroLeague powerhouses and their D'Or Fischer

The 2010/11 season was very special in all sorts of ways, from having the a breath taking backcourt to making it to the final four and one D'Or Fischer who just wore the yellow jersey the year before

08/11/2018
HOME · History · The story of two EuroLeague powerhouses and their D'Or Fischer
The story of two EuroLeague powerhouses and their D'Or Fischer
It's not that uncommon that a player moves from what team to another, in fact it's quite regular just as it is for a player to play against his former team, but what happens when we are talking about the oldest and perhaps one of the most prestigious rivalries, does it add an extra kick? Spices things up a bit? And what if those teams meet in the EuroLeague final four?

The days were the ones of rebuilding and rerouting as two of Europe's biggest and finest empires were looking to go get back to where they belong – the top. Real Madrid who signed Ettore Messina during t the 2009/10 season off season expected the four time EuroLeague winning coach to make them title contenders once again, however Los Blancos ended up falling short in the best of five El-Classico playoff series.

Hungrier and deeper and longer, the 2010/11 Real Madrid were built to go all the way and to back words into actions they've added a player who stared with the squad in yellow and blue just the year before, a player who made a name for himself for having good hands, the ability to protect the rim as well as contesting almost every shot and if that wasn’t enough he could knock down high post jumpers all day long, and yes we are talking about D'or Fischer.

D'or Fischer arrived to Maccabi Tel Aviv from Bree (Belgium) and almost immediately made a name for himself as a great signing and a force to be reckoned. After two years with the squad in yellow and blue D'or Fischer went on and became the second player in the new millennium to play for both Real Madrid and Maccabi Tel Aviv after Macije Lampe, their predecessors in the previous millennium were Wendell Alexis and Nikola Loncar. The road to the final four is not always all sunshine and rainbows….

Los Blancos road to the final four was somewhat of a bumpy road, they finished the regular season with a 6:4 record, Madrid saw brighter days in the top 16 phase as they dominated their group with a 5:1 record making it to the playoffs with home court advantage yet domestically their performances were under expectations as coach Messina stepped down from his position just before the EuroLeague playoff series against Valencia. 

With Emanuele Molin being promoted as Madrid's head coach the Blancos and Valencia went the distance with Madrid making it to the final four. Fischer did exactly what Los Blancos needed him to do whether it was in scoring, rebounding or blocking shots, his averages in the 2010/11 season were 6.2P, 5.9R and 1.4B in 18:27 Minutes per game.

Maccabi on the other hand made some changes to its roster yet the biggest one was replacing Coach Pini Gershon with David Blatt. Maccabi presented one of the most tenacious styles of basketball taking no prisoners enroute of great defensive displays and a very impressive 9:1 record in the regular season. 

The top 16 was somewhat even at least record wise as the yellows finished it with a 3:3 record making it to the playoffs where they would meet the same team they faced for their first EuroLeague game of the 2010/11 season- Baskonia. Facing Baskonia without a home court advantage seemed tough but with coach Blatt leading the Maccabi train what may have looked impossible became very much possible. 

Maccabi won the first game stealing home court advantage from the Spaniards in buzzer beating fashion and went on winning games 3 & 4 in Tel Aviv making to the final four held in Barcelona but before they lost their defensive pillar – Doron Perkins to a season ending knee injury.  

Just like every year along came the month of May and that meant only one thing it's time for the greatest festivity known to every basketball fan throughout, the EuroLeague final four. The wait was over and every Maccabi and Madrid fan were waiting for the tipoff as the sights of all sides were locked on the Holy Grail.

Madrid were armed with Ante Tomic, Mirza Begic, Felipe Reyes and Fischer which meant length, shot contesting and the ability to score both in the paint and from midrange. Maccabi on the other hand had Sofoklis Schortsianitis, David Blu Chuck Eidson and Guy Pnini who ended up delivering a knockout enroute of an 82:63 win and a shot at the title.

Needless to say that every final four is special and motivation is definitely not scarce, but the story of this game got a lot more interesting with D'Or Fischer playing against his former team as there was much more at stake. Coach Blatt's game plan was so immaculate limiting almost each and every one of Los Blancos' players including the former yellow giant. Maccabi won that game and both teams had to wait three more years before they would meet again in the final four only that it would be the finals game in held in the fashion capital of the world Milan, with Maccabi winning the EuroLeague championship.


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