By Niki Bakouli/ email@example.com
Among the many things coach Argiris Pedoulakis said, after Panathinaikos sweapt Olympiacos to get back at the top of the Greek League was that “Gist and Lasme were the keys for us, since with them we matched the strength that Printezis and Hines give to our rivals”. As this duet got the work done, they had way too many flight hours, with beautiful dunks and crucial blocks.
We asked from James Gist to explain to Εurohoops what actually happened? How his group of friends managed to get the Greek Cup and the Greek championship, the year the Greens changed almost everything (but Diamantidis and Tsartsaris).
Ηis answer? “We worked hard all season and it paid off at the end. We knew we had a good team, we knew all season what is going on, we made a lot of changes this year in the roster and we had some big moments, in Euroleague, in everything. And to be able to come out and show here in the Greek championship what we are capable of… It was big for us to win this. We worked hard and we had a good atmosphere here, in the locker rooms. We all did that together”.
-OK, you expected to get the title, but did you expect to sweep?
“No, we didn’t expect to sweep, but we took one game at the time. And we knew today (ed.note: on Wednesday) it’s going to be the toughest game. So, we had to be focus and ready to play”.
-You talked about the changes you have made. How easy was to find each other, each time?
“We have a team where everybody’s IQ is high. Everybody has a high IQ. And that’s why it wasn’t so hard for everybody to adjust, for everybody to fill in. We have great guys, with great personalities, so it wasn’t really hard at all”.
-And together with Stephan Lasme you messed all up with your flights…
“Definitely we had fun. We had fun out there. I am just glad we were able to do the things we were good”.
-And what about your knees? You were all the time up and down.
“Oh… It’s the end of the season so I will get to rest for a little bit”.
-What will you remember most of all?
“We kept fighting regardless of what happened, we had a great season at the Euroleague. We were the underestimated. People didn’t expect that we will do what we did, to get to the five games with Barcelona. That was big (ed.note: Lasme gets into the picture with his “champions sunglasses” as he said to sing “sweep”) and then we came here at the Greek league and we sweep and we are the champions”.
– And about next year?
“It’s too early to tell”.