Jaka Lakovic now knows how it feels to win the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague and the 7DAYS EuroCup. As a player, he helped FC Barcelona win the 2009-10 EuroLeague. As a head coach, Lakovic guided Gran Canaria to its first-ever EuroCup crown. Lakovic led a Gran Canaria team that even made it look easy. Gran Canaria was 13-0 in front of its fans, getting the most home wins by any EuroCup fan ever, and finished the season with a 19-3 record. Coach Lakovic already made headlines with ratiopharm Ulm last season by knocking out top-seeded team Joventut Badalona in the eighthfinals. This season, Coach Lakovic's team was the top seed and made the most of the home-court advantage. "Every week is filled with tension and the stress of a one-and-done game in which, with the home-court advantage, we were seen as a favorite. But the next-game mentality was most important for us, just taking it day by day," Lakovic said. "Somebody said it was actually a final game, somebody called it the game of the season, somebody else called it, I don't know, the game of his career. But at the end of the day, it was another do-or-die game, like the ones we played in the last four weeks."
Congratulations on winning the EuroCup. It is your first title as head coach. How does it feel?
"Thank you. Yes, it is my first title as a head coach. As assistant coach, I was part of the staff who won the EuroBasket with Slovenia, which was very important for my national team. So yes, this one is the first as a head coach and it's a special one because of many things: because of the way we did it, and also what it means to the island of Gran Canaria, to the people here. So we are really, really proud and happy to bring it here."