Club Profile: Unics Kazan

Jul 17, 2015 by Eurocupbasketball.com Print
Club Profile: Unics Kazan

Unics Kazan comes off a rollercoaster 2014-15 season. Unics survived the Turkish Airlines Euroleague Qualifying Rounds and became the only team to down Real Madrid in the Spanish capital over the past two Euroleague seasons. Still, the team did not advance to the Top 16, but bounced back by reaching the Eurocup elimination rounds. Unics rallied to down heavy favorite Lokomotiv Kuban Krasnodar in the quarterfinals before losing to Herbalife Gran Canaria Las Palmas in the semifinals. Lokomotiv took its sporting revenge in the VTB United League quarterfinals and finished Unics's season. Founded in 1991, Unics became the perfect ambassador for the sports-crazy Republic of Tatarstan in the Russian Federation. The club already reached the Russian League finals in 2001 and 2002, the year in which it also made it to the Saporta Cup semifinals. Its hard work paid off in 2003, when Unics downed CSKA in overtime to lift the Russian Cup. In 2004, Kazan was home to the FIBA Europe League final four and Unics made the most of it by downing Maroussi to win its first continental title. Unics made its ULEB Cup debut in the 2005-06 season and already reached the semifinals the following year, before losing against Real Madrid. Unics also reached the 2008 ULEB Cup Final Eight. Everything clicked in the 2010-11 Eurocup as Unics thrashed Cedevita Zagreb in the semifinals and bested Cajasol Sevilla in the championship game. Marko Popovic amassed 18 points and 11 assists to earn Finals MVP honors. Unics made its Euroleague debut a successful one in the 2011-12 campaign by going all the way to the playoffs and returned to the Eurocup Finals a year later, but lost to Valencia in the elimination rounds and finished that season with a 10-4 record. The team made up for that early exit the next season; Unics reached the Eurocup Finals sporting a 20-2 record, which helped Andrew Goudelock earn Eurocup MVP honors and Andrea Trinchieri to be chosen as the Eurocup Coach of the Year. However, Valencia again stopped Unics’s march to the title. Unics bounced back by lifting the Russian Cup trophy and reaching the VTB League semifinals. Unics enters this season with the second-most wins in Eurocup history and looks to remain one of the teams to beat in its 10th season in the competition.

2014-15 Results: Euroleague: regular season, Eurocup: Semifinalist, VTB League: Quarterfinalist

Yogev Ohayon - Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv - EB14_5qhirt9ktl5ymetd