| ||Dominique Faurie has covered women's basketball all over Europe and will write regularly for FIBAEurope.com during the EuroLeague season. |
EuroLeague Women 2008 is in the books and for the second straight year the ladies from Spartak Moscow Region have a trophy to bring back to Russia with them.
As the Faurie Files checks out until next season here's some news and notes from the final day of the competition.
"This is the third time I have played Brno. They play unbelievable basketball, with an amazing energy, and they have intimidating fans."
-Lauren Jackson, Spartak Moscow
"We lost many balls and that's how they came back. But I always trust in my players on the court. They have a lot of experience."
-Natalia Hejkova, Spartak's coach
"We must be a very exciting team for the crowd"
-Belinda Snell, After Bourges' last-second defeat to Ekaterinburg and an overtime loss to Spartak.
"When you get the ball like that, you shoot, you don't think. I'm so happy for my team and for me."
-Caroline Aubert of Ekaterinburg after her game-winning three-pointer.
Three Russian players from Spartak managed to win both the EuroLeague Women and EuroBasket Women titles: Schegoleva, Osipova and Karpunina already raised the Cup in Chieti for Russia.
Laurent Buffard appeared in his sixth Final Four and the bronze medal collected by Ekaterinburg confers a perfect symmetry to his balance sheet: two victories, two finals, two third places.
Bourges had unexpected fans against Ekaterinburg. Some Spartak Moscow fans applauded for the French team against their Russian rivals.
Bourges - Ekaterinburg was also a battle of big name French coaches in Pierre Vincent and Laurent Buffard. The first is the new coach of the French national team and the second one lusts after the position. Buffard, with Belgium, beat France where Vincent was assistant coach in EuroBasket Women 2007 and he got another victory against his rival in the third place game.
Lauren Jackson will go to the WNBA after her Russian season is over and leave the USA to join her national team before the Olympic games.
By the numbers
Spartak Moscow is the first team to defend it's EuroLeague Women title since Ruzomberok in 2000.
Time gone without any points in the Final, as the scoreboard was stuck on 63-55 till 36:30.
For the second time in a row, Bourges finished fourth in the Final Four. The last medal for the French club was in 2001 when they won it all.
Six players from Brno played in the 2006 Final victory over Samara.
Brno came back to within seven points in the final but could get no closer.
Points of Lauren Jackson after 15 minutes in the final.
The feeling that sometimes players are artist, with so many beautiful moves.
The game-winning shot of Caroline Aubert captured so beautifully on the FIBA Europe website.
The high-five at the end of the final between Tina Thomson and her son Dylan.
My Final Four All Star five: Bird, Zirkova, Snell, Thompson, Jackson.
We didn't love
To know that Euroleague Women 2008 is over.