Nigel Williams-Goss to miss the EuroLeague final, Heurtel might replace him

2022-05-20 10:32
Credit: Irh/LPS via ZUMA Press/Scanpix
Credit Irh/LPS via ZUMA Press/Scanpix

Although Real Madrid won a clutch game against FC Barcelona in the EuroLeague semifinal, the team lost one of its main players along the way.

Nigel Williams-Goss injured his ankle at the very start of the match, left the game early, and did not come back.

Talking about the player, Real Madrid's head coach Pablo Laso provided an update about his status.

"For sure, losing Nigel that early in the game was difficult. It didn't change the gameplan that much because other people stepped up and covered his position," Laso talked about the game.

"Losing such an important player always hurts. I think he's out for tomorrow for sure," the coach told. "The injury is related to his ankle, and we probably have to make tests when we come back to Madrid and see how long the injury is going to be. No secrets to Ergin [Ataman]."

Asked whether there is a possibility that Thomas Heurtel, who wasn't registered for the semifinal but watched the game near the sidelines, might replace Williams-Goss, Laso was blunt: "Sure, it's a possibility."

"I have problems like Ergin has problems. It's a long season. I wish everything would go ok. Nothing in life is easy," Laso said about the injury situation. "Nothing in life is that easy so that everything goes the way you want. We lose games, and it's finished."

"We lose games and everything is bad? No. You're talking about the Crvena Zvezda game in Belgrade," the coach continued. "We played well, we missed open jumpers, it's basketball. That's it."

"That doesn't change me out of my way. That's the way I felt. I think right now I'm in a great position, I'm here talking to you," he explained. "What else could I expect? I thought about this from the beginning of the year, so I'm very happy."

"I don't think about the past. The past is finished. We had problems, what team didn't have problems? I know Ergin is going to say the same thing. Ergin and I spoke about this a lot of times behind the scenes," Laso remembered.

"How are we not going to have problems? With players getting injured, playing 80 games, everybody is saying 'Ok, Madrid is not good, Efes is not good because they're losing'. We had problems, for sure, but we're here," Laso finished his statement.

Asked about how he can motivate his players for the final game after finally beating the El Clasico curse, Laso started joking.

"If my players don't understand that we just won a game yesterday and that it's finished, and there's a final tomorrow if they don't understand that, I'm going to tell them. They're pretty stupid," Laso laughed.

There is a UEFA Champions League final happening next week where Real Madrid will also play in the final. Will Pablo Laso go to watch the match?

"I won't go, I play Manresa on Saturday at 4:30. I have a problem with my family - my kids want to go, and it's a fight, because the one that wants to go is me, not them," Laso explained. "My kids want to go. I won't go, we'll be in Manresa playing. I wish..."

Real Madrid and Anadolu Efes press conference ahead of the final:

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