“Maybe the army will not adjust to us”

The Loko defenders shared their expectations from the two matches ending the calendar year.
Alexander Shcherbenev, leader of Lokomotiv-Kuban in assists (5.6 per match)

It is difficult to find weaknesses in a team that right now gives out a record for wins from the start of the season. The game is going to be difficult for us. But maybe the army guys will look at how we played with the IBA, and they will not tune in enough (laughs). The first defeat – it will happen sooner or later anyway. Perhaps there is some pressure on CSKA in this regard. We'll see. Of course, in this match it will be much more important for us to show what we can do ourselves. I think everyone made conclusions after the MBA. In the game with CSKA, we will show basketball of much better quality. We are actively practicing defense in training, all sorts of important little things. In today's match, we are going to work out all 4 quarters in maximum mode, but due to what we plan to achieve this is a secret (smiles)! Watch the match, connect to the broadcasts, come to the stands – it will be interesting.

Zakhar Vedishchev, the most productive player of the match with CSKA in the first round

Why are my matches with teams from the top half of the standings more productive this season than with outsiders? Don't know. There is no need to play the game. I try to play my best every time and help the team. Now all thoughts are about CSKA. Our goal is to show our maximum. With whom, if not with the leader, to demonstrate your best game? Yes, we didn't play very well with the IBA. Now we train hard, correct mistakes. We need to play more stable. And increase the contact.

Vladislav Yemchenko, defender of Lokomotiv-Kuban

We tune in to every game with the same thoughts – we need to win. Which team doesn't want to beat CSKA, especially at their home? Therefore, we are setting up to fight, to do everything we can. Well, we'll see the result. With which of the army players is it more difficult for me to play personally? Both the Swede and Ware are strong in their own way: they create great pick-and-rolls, and play well one-on-one. But we will do everything to make it difficult for every army player to play. Our main chance is that we are young and ambitious. Now two more guys have arrived – their appearance will help us realize the idea of the coach to play very high-tempo basketball: from the first seconds to show maximum aggression, movement, go into close contact on both sides of the court. I hope we will be able to maintain the pace, maintain concentration – and then we can hope to win. All thoughts so far are only about CSKA. But in general, it's good that against such a principled opponent as PARMA-PARI, we will play at home, where our beloved Locosemya will come to support us massively. I want to leave for the New Year holidays in the right mood. Therefore, I invite everyone: call friends, relatives – we really need your support in the last match of 2022!

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