Rick Pitino: “We blew a golden opportunity and we have no one to blame but ourselves”

Rick Pitino
Photo: EuroLeague Basketball

Panathinaikos head coach Rick Pitino referred to his team’s painful loss to Real Madrid at home on Thursday night (73-74).

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Here is what the 66-year-old coach and Hall of Famer said in the post-game press conference:

“It was a heart-breaking loss. We allowed luck to become an element in the game with our shot selection down the stretch. I don’t think we could’ve run our offense any better in the first quarter. We blew a golden opportunity and we have no one to blame but ourselves.

We played good defense. The guy threw up the ball like that, you can’t ask a question about fouling. I was very happy with that defense. It was outstanding. We let luck, a lucky shot become an element.

If you’re up by three, you foul. You gotta understand the game. The game was lost because we had 4-on-1 breaks, got the ball rejected, didn’t get the rebounds when we had the ball on our hands. Those are things you can control. Shooting an airball, missing a shot, you can’t control that. But taking a smart shot, that you can control.”

Panathinaikos (15-14) now have to beat Buducnost in order to qualify to the playoffs.

*Yiannis Bouranis is an affiliate partner of ESPN and is being compensated for the use of ESPN+ affiliate links. The opinions expressed in his posts are his own.