Credit: BasketNews/Begum Unal
Credit: BasketNews/Begum Unal
Credit: BasketNews/Begum Unal
Credit: BasketNews/Begum Unal
Credit: BasketNews/Begum Unal
Credit: BasketNews/Begum Unal
Credit: BasketNews/Begum Unal
Credit: BasketNews/Begum Unal
Credit: BasketNews/Begum Unal
Credit: BasketNews/Begum Unal

Real Madrid combo guard Fabien Causeur smiled when asked if he ever had a conversation with Luka Doncic that he owes him the MVP award.

3-pointers this season

Points made: 9,7
Accuracy: 35,8%
Place in standings: 3
Record max: 18
Record min: 1
Most made 3FGs: Rudy Fernandez

"It's not that! But we joked about it," one of the best French guards said.

In the 2018 EuroLeague final, Causeur led Real in scoring (17 PTS) and efficiency (21 PIR) to beat Fenerbahce Istanbul 85-80.

However, the EuroLeague media decided to give the MVP award to a teenager who had just turned 19 two months before the title game. Doncic had 15 points, four assists, and 17 PIR that night.

"Of course, he played a great tournament, and I played a great tournament. But I was so happy just to get the title as a team. It's not about individual awards. If you get the MVP award, it's a cherry on the cake. But we just joked about it, and he deserved it," Causeur continued.

They had plenty of opportunities to joke about it since Causeur and Doncic were roommates that year.

They also shared the same room in Belgrade before the last EuroLeague game for Luka Doncic.

Causeur was a six-year EuroLeague veteran at the age of 30 back then. But he still couldn't calm down before the big game against Fenerbahce.

"Before the final, I couldn't sleep. It was 2:00 at night, and I couldn't sleep," Causeur told a funny story to BasketNews. "But Luka was sleeping all the time. He was snoring on the side like there was no pressure at all."

"For him, it was just another game. The kid was special, I'm telling you," Causeur added.

You can sense that Doncic has ice in his veins watching him perform in the NBA playoffs.

In Game 7 of the Western Conference semifinals against the No. 1 seeded Phoenix Suns, Doncic scored 35 points to shift Dallas Mavericks to the conference finals.

Fabien Causeur

Fabien  Causeur
Fabien  Causeur
MIN: 19.81
PTS: 8.35 (54.1%)
REB: 1.58
As: 1.42
ST: 0.27
BL: 0.08
TO: 1.04
GM: 26

Doncic finished the game with 35 points (6/8 2PT, 6/11 3PT, 5/5 FT), ten rebounds, four assists, two steals, and two turnovers.

He had 27 points before the halftime - just like the entire Suns team (57-27).

"I'm just a fan. The kid is special. I don't have to say anything new. Because everybody sees it. It only shows that it's all fun for him. He's just having fun on the court, and that's how kids start playing basketball," Causeur told BasketNews.

Causeur was going to the weight lifting room when the EuroLeague had to relocate the 2022 Final Four host city.

"Oh, it would be nice to get back there," Causeur instantly reacted to the news that Final Four was relocated from Berlin to Belgrade.

That's were the last time Causeur lifted the EuroLeague trophy with Real Madrid.

"We were struggling, and that moment when they changed it, we were losing games, and we had so much to do to qualify to the Final Four," he added.

But Madrid regrouped, as they usually do, and will aim for the 11th title this week.

Just like four years ago, Causeur is an integral part of the Pablo Laso team.

Causeur is averaging 8.3 points (2FG: 59.4%; 3FG: 45.5%), his career-high wearing Real jerseys for the fifth season.

He set the tone for the playoff series against Maccabi with a 20-point and 5-assist performance (21 PIR).

He was close to his career-high, scoring 25 in 18 minutes against ASVEL. Causeur punished Milan's defense with 17 and scored 16 against Fenerbahce.

When Real had issues with point guards, Causeur stepped up and brought his experience.

"I'm feeling great. I've been feeling good the whole season," Causeur told BasketNews.

"It was tough after the injury to get back in the rhythm. But now I feel good, confident, and excited about this weekend. We were working so hard the whole season to be able to play these games, so I'm really excited," the French guard added.

Causeur is not living in the past. On Thursday, he's facing an opponent that became like a curse for a Royal club. Barca defeated Madrid five times in a row this season.

"They have so many weapons on offense and defense," Causeur explained why it's so tough to compete with Barcelona since Sarunas Jasikevicius took over the club.

"They're working very well together. And they have known each other well enough for three years. They have great players. All 15 guys could play in any team in Europe. We have to be focused all 40 minutes against them. Give your best on defense because they're not going to give you anything. Offensively, in some games like this, you need some luck to score shots. It's not just against Barcelona, but any team, especially in the Final Four."

Asked if the pressure now is on Barcelona's side as they might be considered the Final Four favorites with a must-win mentality, Causeur had mixed feelings.

"Yes and no. Of course, the feel is like they beat us many teams in the season, so they should beat us. But at the end of the day, it's one game. It's not a series of 5 or 7 games," Causeur told.

"When you go to the Final Four, you flip the coin. Because that day of this weekend you can have a great night or you can't score anything that day. That's just basketball. In these kind of tournaments, you never have a favorite."

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FC Barcelona
Real Madrid
1 Position
Field goals
9 Position
5 Position
1 Position
2 Position
1 Position
14 Position
8 Position

Teams leaders

Nikola  Mirotic
16,6 PTS
66% 2P%
45% 3P%
Guerschon  Yabusele
11,9 PTS
57% 2P%
41% 3P%
Nikola  Mirotic
5,1 REB
4,3 DREB
0,8 OREB
Walter  Tavares
7,5 REB
4,6 DREB
2,9 OREB
Nick  Calathes
6,0 As
2,0 TO
24 MIN
Thomas  Heurtel
4,6 As
1,9 TO
19 MIN