Maccabi Fox Tel Aviv will start on Wednesday her double EuroLeague round, as she'll host Khimki Moscow in Menorah Mivtachim Arena (21:00, live on Sport5 - channel 55). Similar to the past 11 EuroLeague contests in which the Yellow & Blue Arena was sold out, Giannis Sfairopoulos's squad wants to rebound off their first league home loss against Real Madrid and build a new winning streak. The head to head record between the two club stands at 6:3 in favor of Maccabi that at home holds a 3:1 record.
Maccabi will continue to miss Omri Casspi, Tarik Black, John DiBartolomeo, Nate Wolters, and Yovel Zoosman due to injury. Amar'e Stoudemire landed back in Israel after a short stint in the United States and will be available for head coach Giannis Sfairopoulos. Scottie Wilbekin's who twisted his ankle in the domestic league game against Eilat is still questionable and will be a game-time decision. On the other end, Khimki Moscow landed in Israel without Jeremy Evans, Anthony Gill, and Chris Kramer.
"Tomorrow we have a very important game against a very talented offensive-minded team. If Khimki finds a rhythm, they can score easily, which means we need to play our defense and, on the other end, find attacking lanes", Told head coach Giannis Sfairopoulos at the pre-game press conference. "We aren't in the best condition regarding our injuries, but we will try to do our best. We still don't know about Scottie's status as the percentages seem higher that he won't suit up, but we have hope".
"Hopefully, we will be concentrated, I trust our players and this squad as the newcomers start to adjust", Indicated Sfairopoulos. "Amar'e is still jetlagged and hasn't fully recovered, but he is positive and ready to help. We need our fans to support the team more than all other times needing their voice to push us back to the winning ways".
"I'm up to the challenge, that's why Maccabi brought me here, it's crazy the freak injury bug around", Said Aaron Jackson about the challenges due to several injured guards. "I'm here to stop the bleeding as much as possible, and also I had a freak injury, but luckily it wasn't serious as the other players. Unfortunately, we lost to Bayern, there I was definitely getting my flow, believing that will help me take off, but then before the Madrid game, I twisted my ankle. Hopefully, I'll do what they signed me for".
"It's hard to stop a player like him (Alexey Shved)", Explained the experienced guard. "We have to contain him as much as possible, what is big for him is his first dribble, so if we attack that, we can do a really good job disrupting him".
"We are the same Maccabi, we are here together as a family, and throughout any season, you have people getting hurt and new ones coming in", Said Angelo Caloiaro. "The season is 10 months long, things will go up and down, so you just have to keep grinding, doing what you've been doing, and things will come your way".
"In EuroLeague, especially at home, there is a sense of urgency because you want to win all of them", Told Caloiaro about the importance of getting back on track. "You have to look at any EuroLeague team doesn't matter if home or away as a team that can beat you because there is so much talent out there. You have to come out and be prepared for it".