Gigi Datome: If you play behind closed doors, it means that there’s still a problem

2020-03-23T12:26:16+00:00 2020-03-23T13:35:32+00:00.

Antonis Stroggylakis

23/Mar/20 12:26

Leagues should be resumed under exactly the right circumstances, Gigi Datome says.

By Antonis Stroggylakis/

Fenerbahce Beko forward Gigi Datome commented on games being held behind closed doors during the coronavirus outbreak.

Datome‘s Fenerbahce played a Turkish BSL League game against Tofas Bursa amid the coronavirus pandemic before the championship was postponed indefinitely. Two EuroLeague matches (Olimpia MilanoReal Madrid, ValenciaOlimpia Milano) were held without fans for safety reasons, prior to the competition’s suspension on March 12.

“If you play behind closed doors, it means that there’s still a problem and if there’s still a problem, there’s no point in playing. In my opinion, when action resumes, it’ll have to be done with fans and normal travel,” Datome said in an interview for Corriere Dello Sport, per Sportface. BSL was the last basketball championship in Europe to be shut down.

Datome, who is also the president of the ELPA (EuroLeague Players Association), talked about what will happen with the players’ salaries with the season currently being in a hiatus “until further notice.”

“It’s a purely legal dispute. As president of ELPA, we are aware of this moment. I think it’s a good and right thing to sit on a table with EuroLeague and talk about it. If the season doesn’t resume, as I think it’ll happen, we’ll have to find an agreement.”

Datome’s native Italy has been the hardest-hit country by the coronavirus pandemic. The death toll has risen to 5,476 while 59,138 people have been infected as of Monday (23/3) afternoon.