Maksvytis had both good and bad news: the situation of the forwards of the national team is changing

According to K. Maksvytis, M. Kuzminskas, who has missed all national team rehearsals so far due to a thigh injury, should be tested for the first time in Friday’s match against the Dutch.

“I hope Kuzminskas will make his debut tomorrow. But we faced some difficulties, because E. Žukauskas is no longer participating in training. He has a leg muscle mini-trauma, something similar to Mindaugas. He will have to race against time – we will see if he will be able to recover and return to form,” said the 45-year-old specialist, whose prediction is that the former pupil of Parma club “Parma” (Russia) can return to the lineup in about a week.

The uncertainty about the health of the players forces K. Maksvytis to take his time in narrowing down the composition of the team: until now, the only midfielder Laurynas Biručius was thanked for his work in the camp.

“The situation was a little messed up by micro-injuries. According to the original idea, there should have been 14 basketball players left in the national team. Maybe tomorrow we will say goodbye to someone, but we are limited by injuries. As a result, I cannot yet answer how many players will remain with us until the World Cup selection “window”. In any case, now we want to focus not on the search for the 12th, but on the main 9th or 10th, that’s where our emphasis is,” noted K. Maksvytis.

On Thursday in Vilnius, the Lithuanians defeated the world champions, who rose from a deep hole, 78:76.

The hosts started the match with three three-pointers by Roko Giedraitis and a 19-4 run, which set the tone for the first part of the duel.

But despite not having the strongest lineup, the Spaniards did not raise the white flag and eliminated almost the entire deficit in the third quarter – after a series of substitutions, the Lithuanian team seemed out of tune and could not adjust their sights in any way.

The outcome of the match was decided by the last attacks: Ignas Brazdeikis played not only bravely, but also accurately, and on the other side of the field Lorenzo Brown the throw was off target.

At the press conference, K. Maksvytis did not hide that the plan of the decisive attack was different: he had to complete the attack Marius Grigonis or Jonas Valančiūnas.

“We couldn’t play as we wanted, the ball went to Iggy, and then there was already improvisation: he took the initiative and scored points”, commented K. Maksvytis.

The coach was disappointed by the team’s fight “under the board”. The Lithuanians themselves had only five second chances, at that time they allowed the Spaniards to repeat the shots 16 times and thus collect 26 points.

“It’s good that we got such a tight game, we saw the reaction of the team, the strengths and weaknesses. I was most satisfied with the first half, the very beginning. But the reserves got into the game quite poorly, we were stuck a bit when the Spaniards started to double up on our tall men and move the defenders to the weak side.

I would also like to point out the passivity in the fight for bounced balls – once again this is a problem, it needs to be solved before the championship. We will draw conclusions”, K. Maksvytis promised.

He also doubted whether I. Brazdeikis is suitable for the recently tried reserve role – the coach has the same opinion about D. Sabonis.

“I think it’s bad for Ign to start from the bench, there are players who fit in better. This is also on my mind.

Domantas? He also doesn’t come off the bench well, so it’s better for him to play in the starting five together with J. Valančiūnas. of course NBA he mainly plays as a midfielder, and here you have to shift. In addition, Domantas has more freedom and space in the NBA, almost no one doubles the defense against him. We still need to learn how to play with him, but knowing his capabilities, I think we will definitely find ways to exploit Domant’s ability to pass the ball”, thought the national team captain.

The match was watched by a full ASG arena – almost 10 thousand people. viewers.

The president of the Spanish Basketball Federation also visited Vilnius Jorge Garbajosabut there was no coach Sergio Scariolo save leaders Willy Hernangomez, Sergio Llull and Rudy Fernandez.

Two days ago, the teams were already warming up in Las Palmas – the Lithuanians won 82:77.

The national team will finish the training cycle on Friday in Vilnius by playing a friendly match against the Netherlands.

“We play in a championship format – three matches in four days. We specifically planned it that way. We’ll see how it goes tomorrow,” K. Maksvytis said when asked about the possible fatigue factor.

The “window” for the selection of the World Cup will be waiting later: August 24. Lithuanians will visit Hungary on August 27. Kaunas will host Montenegro.

In previous rehearsals before September 1. starting the European Championship, the students of K. Maksvytis defeated Estonia twice each (84:70 and 90:88) and Finland (76:61 and 87:52) and remain undefeated.

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