Pau Gasol led Spain with 25 points, 12 rebounds, 4 assists, 3 blocks and 10 fouls drawn. Rudy added 11 points before the injury while Llull had 12 points. Kalnietis and Seibutis scored 13 points each for Lithuania while Valanciunas had 10 points and 9 rebounds.
Their fates and their accomplishments, in their native land at least, will forever be intertwined. “There is definitely something special,” Gasol told ESPN.com. “But I don’t know if it’s coincidence, or if it’s timing. Our generation, of the 1980s, it is a mix of special players and that’s why we were so successful early on and that’s why there are still a few of us left playing at a high level.”
Gasol and Reyes were both just 23 when these two Goliaths last squared off for the European title, 12 years ago, with a 36-point blast from the now-Chicago Bulls forward not enough to deny their Baltic rivals a 93-84 victory in the final in Stockholm. “That team was very talented,” Gasol recalls. “They escaped from us. And they beat us soundly.” Fernandez, later to have a stint in the NBA with Portland before returning to Real Madrid, had yet to break through. But other stars-in-the-making announced themselves to the world. Jose Calderon. Juan Carlos Navarro. Jorge Garbajosa. “La Generacion de Oro.” The Golden Kids.
Mark Woods: Lithuania’s Jonas Maciulas has received death threats from Serbia after last night’s EuroBasket semi win (h/t Gigantes)
Mark Woods: #EuroBasket2015 semi-final. Serbia 64-67 Lithuania (Teodosic 16 – Valenciunas 15). Lithuania meet Spain in Sunday’s final.
David ‘Dubi’ Pick: Lithuania, Espana, Poland, Turks & more NTs ramping up complaints to FIBA about poor hotel conditions in Lille. Poland & Lithuania stressed that delivered cuisine isn’t fit for Marcin Gortat, Jonas Valanciunas – NBA stars. Espana, Finland, Turks, others called for field trips for dinner. Opted against hotel menus.