• Pesic Fired
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Sarunas Jasikevicius (Kaunas, Lithuania, 1976) awaits historical emergencies at the Palau, but he is not running. As when it was that diabolical base that conquered four Euroleagues with three different teams , he prefers before observing, analyzing and taking the best option. Perhaps that is why it was not until the third opportunity when he decided to accept the offer to sit on the Barcelona bench.

Not even 24 hours after the dismissal of Svetislav Pesic , just a day and a half since the debacle in the final of the ACB against Baskonia, Barça began the umpteenth reconstruction in search of the lost step, of the titles that it used to lift each season, when it does not so much he danced with the best in Europe. Like when Jasikevicius was in command on the track, an absolute culé idol, the charisma of a player who has managed to transform himself into a technician as a natural process. Saras was already a coach when he played. From the bench he ordered almost more than me, "Xavi Pascual confessed.

The situation was so extreme at the Palau, that at last the reluctance with the Lithuanian, immovable for Zalgiris despite the attempts of Barça in the last two summers, was settled. As a good pupil of Obradovic, Saras was concerned that he could not have full control in a club riddled with controls. "It is very difficult because we really do not know who is in charge in the section and who makes the decisions," he confessed a year ago in an interview on Mundo Deportivo. His personal connection with Nacho Rodríguez, current sports director, in addition to the juicy financial offer for the three seasons he has signed of the largest budget in Europe, have been able to tip a scale that, on the other hand, seemed predestined.

Final Four with Zalgiris

In July 2014, Jasikevicius announced his retirement, ending a career in legend that began in the US, where he trained at a Pennsylvania high school and the University of Maryland. Aíto reconverted it based on his arrival at Barça, where by the hand of Pesic he was going to conquer his first Euroleague in 2003. He added two more with Maccabi before making a jump without much success to the NBA ( 138 games between Pacers and Warriors ), to return to Panathinaikos in 2007 and continue adding titles. In 2013 he had a last year of Barça, where he conquered the Cup and reached the Final Four. That already sounded like a see you soon.

All the personality he displayed on the track was soon reflected on the benches, where he started as an assistant to Gintaras Krapikas in the Zalgiris of his heart. In 2016, he took the reins, soon leaving lessons of his tactical wisdom and the ability to win over the players in a club where every summer he had to rebuild. Pure histrionics and vehemence -anthological results were some fights to his pupils-, Saras reached the peak of his brief period as a coach in 2018, when he qualified the Kaunas team for the Final Four in Belgrade.

Although his style at Zalgiris was marked by the counter-current bet of a team that barely threw triples, at the controls of Barça he will have to adapt to a squad with little room for maneuver after the millionaire disbursement last summer and in which Nikola Mirotic will be your reference. As a player he already coincided with Tomic and Abrines. And Brandon Davies grew up with him in Kaunas to become one of the most coveted centers in Europe.

A golf fan, Saras assured Gigantes that he doesn't need to disconnect too much from the baskets. «When I get home, I still watch games to discover players. I am distracted just like watching a movie, ”admitted the Lithuanian emblem: with the national team, he won European gold in 2003 and played up to four Olympic Games, winning bronze in Sydney 2000.

According to the criteria of The Trust Project

Know more

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