Sarunas Jasikevicius talks ‘crazy’ Monaco series, matchup vs. Panathinaikos

Sarunas Jasikevicius talks ‘crazy’ Monaco series, matchup vs. Panathinaikos

Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul and Sarunas Jasikevicius overtook a long and arduous journey to make it to the 2024 EuroLeague Final Four by defeating AS Monaco 3-2 in the playoffs.

In an interview with Ismail Senol of beIN SPORTS, the experienced tactician talked about the intensity of the series, his touch-ups on Fenerbahce’s strategy following injuries, and the upcoming semifinal matchup against Panathinaikos AKTOR Athens.

“It was crazy,” Jasikevicius said about the playoff series. “I don’t think anyone is talking about it, but except for the third game, which we won by seven or eight points, all the games went to the last possession. Two games went to overtime,” he recalled.

We were lucky enough to win. I think we had a chance to take control in the second game. We also had the opportunity to win the fourth game here. The ball was not in our favor in that game, but it was in our favor in the fifth game,” he explained.

One of the critical interventions that Jasikevicius had made to Fenerbahce’s game was the usage of a small-ball line-up, which means playing without a center or playing with shorter players.

In hindsight, the Lithuanian coach was forced to do this because of Johnathan Motley‘s absence until Game 5 and a lackluster performance from Sertac Sanli.

“We had tried the small-ball line-up in the Turkish Basketball Super League and in other games as well. When factors like Motley’s absence and the others not being at their best came together, we tried it. We were forced to do it, but we have this option.”

Another story of the playoff series against Monaco was comprised of the critical three-pointers sunk by Nick Calathes, who scored Fenerbahce’s last six points (2/2 3FG)

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