Loko’s players and coaching staff began their Monday stay in the capital of Tatarstan by watching the dramatic final quarter of the match between UNICS and Pari Nizhny Novgorod at dinner. Of course, tournament circumstances forced them to support the wards of Velimir Perasovich – more precisely, the wards of his assistant Artur Bigeev, since the Croatian maestro himself was ill and could not lead the team. However, according to information from the Kazan headquarters, in the match with Krasnodar, Perasovich will habitually burn out the edge.
Loko, in turn, approaches the match in almost optimal composition and conditions. Andrei Martyuk, the best athlete of the Krasnodar Territory and participant of the VTB-2023 United League Stars Match, caught a cold and missed one training session, but on Wednesday he worked with the team and was one of the best on the floor. Also, forward Ilya Sorokin joined the base, who was happy to score both from behind the three-point arc and from above. Another forward, Egor Sychkov, continues to repair his injured knee in Krasnodar.
The mood of the team after a bright victory over the current champion, Zenit, is correct. The head coach Alexander Sekulich does not get tired of repeating to the wards at the installations that they came to Kazan not just to fight and fight, but to win. The difference is fundamental. And there is every reason to hope that after winning in St. Petersburg, significant changes have taken place in the psychology of both the team as a whole and a number of its leaders. At the same time, Sekulich diligently cultivates the sprouts of these changes: at some point in the training, he burst into a tirade so expressive that huge pennants with the achievements of UNICS fluttered under the arches of the arena, as if from a hurricane.
Surely the sign on the door of the guest locker room will add motivation and aggression to the Loko players, telling that there is a team behind this door … for sports dancing and acrobatic rock and roll. No one has anything against the representatives of these glorious sports, besides, they beautifully decorated the last home match of Krasnodar – but still, the comparison with dancers for basketball players is probably not the most flattering.
Well, in the eternal confrontation of dancing office plankton and basketball sharks representing the coaching staff, the unconditional victory remained for … the first. The club’s press service dominated all the training sessions in the traditional center-court throwing competition and completed the Kazan stage of the protracted confrontation with a crushing advantage.
The match will take place on February 2, the controversial start is at 19:00. It is hardly worth expecting a full house, but, of course, this does not make the task of Loko any easier. Watch the match broadcast on lokobasket.com , the VTB United League website or the Match! TV channel The game.”