Even the weight of Tony Parker and Nicolas Batum, transformed into shock lawyers on Monday night, did not save the presence of Marine Johannès at the Euro, which will be played from June 15 to 25 in Israel and Slovenia. If the French Basketball Federation has already allowed its NBA players several times to miss the start of pre-competition camps with the Blues, it has been inflexible with its best player, determined to chain Eurobasket and WNBA this summer. That's why she asked to join the United States this week, in the wake of her title of champion of France Monday with Lyon Asvel Women, to sign her contract with the franchise of the New York Liberty, where she has already evolved in 2019 and 2022.
On a mission 🇫🇷
Les Bleues coach Jean-Aimé Toupane announced today the list of 15 players who will continue the preparation for the @EuroBasketWomen 2023 💪
The complete ⬇️
— Basketball France Teams (@FRABasketball) May 25, 2023
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Until the end, the Fédé and the staff of the France team did not wish to allow him to join the group of Blues with a few days late for the preparation camp, which has just started this Thursday in Toulouse. "Marine Johannès has confirmed to the staff of Les Bleues her intention to go to her franchise of the New York Liberty, says the FFBB in a statement announcing the fifteen players selected. The date of his return to France only allows him to take part in the preparation from June 7, a week before the start of the Euro. Given this late arrival, the staff of the Women's France Team decided not to keep Marine Johannès in the group. »
"It's not possible to do everything"
The president of Asvel Tony Parker evoked Monday a completely different calendar, since his player was likely to miss only five days of training, and therefore the first two friendly matches against Serbia on Sunday and Monday. Interviewed by beIN SPORTS on Wednesday, coach Jean-Aimé Toupane and Les Bleues manager Céline Dumerc had all the trouble in the world to justify this very severe sanction, which has everything of a lose-lose scenario, while the France team finally wants to win the Euro with a generation remaining on five finals lost in rank in the competition. "We would like Marine to be there," says Jean-Aimé Toupane. There was never any question of closing the door on him. The framework has been defined from the beginning and I focus on the team, not on a particular case. »
Former leader of the France team, Céline Dumerc, who had benefited (like Sandrine Gruda) from a different configuration by playing in the 2014 World Cup after missing part of the preparation of the Blues because of the WNBA simply slips: "It's sad, it's not easy. There are choices that have to be made because of the timing. The preparation is very short and it is not possible to do everything. We've been chasing a title for ten years and we'd like to be in the best situation, having the whole group." Even if it means that he is deprived of his greatest offensive talent. And even its two finest triggers, since Gabby Williams, victim of a concussion during the LFB play-offs with Asvel and "unavailable for several weeks", is also out of the group. We will know in a month if this very risky bet without Marine Johannès, one year before the Paris Olympics, was a winner for the Fed.
- France Basketball Team
- Women's France Team
- Tony Parker