Laso, Rudy, Sergio Rodríguez and Slaughter won in the categories of best coach, best national player, best sixth man and the most spectacular player of the year for 2012, respectively.
Real Madrid’s great season last year—winning the Copa del Rey in at the Palau Sant Jordi in a final for the history books and displaying the spectacular skill that brought a lot of fans back to basketball—was also recognized by the Gigantes del Basket (Basketball Giants) magazine at its twenty-ninth awards ceremony. The Whites received four awards this year: Pablo Laso for best trainer, Rudy Fernández for best national player, Sergio Rodríguez for best sixth man, and Marcus Slaughter for the most spectacular player.
Spain’s oldest basketball magazine recognized 2012’s best in 17 individual categories. Real Madrid was the star of the night, recognized by four awards. Pablo Laso takes the place of the 2010 most outstanding coach Sito Alonso and joins other illustrious Real managers like Lolo Sáinz, Luyk and Joan Plaza. The Real coach, who has given his team a sense of identity, wanted to thank “the club, the coaching team and the players” and had a message for the club: “I know that more good moments are to come throughout the remainder of the season”. Rudy Fernandez was awarded the “National Giant” award. This is the second award for the Spanish power forward from Mallorca who left his mark in the games played for Real during the NBA lockout; he picked up his first trophy in the 2007-2008 season together with current Memphis Grizzlies’ pivot Marc Gasol. “I’m surprised by this award. I owe it to my teammates on the Spanish team and to Real Madrid and I want to thank you all, because it was a difficult year for me”. Sergio Rodríguez was also recognized at the award ceremony. The Real Madrid point guard took the prize for the best sixth man in La Liga. El Chacho, with a streak of spectacular performances who has emerged as one of the best at triple-pointers and assists in the competition, takes over the title from his teammate Felipe Reyes. “We’re doing things right and that’s reflected in both individual and team recognitions. I’m in good shape and we’re winning games at the same time as well. Also, the fact that we’ve been playing together for a while is another one of this team’s keys to success”.
The most spectacular player award went to Marcus Slaughter. The Real pivot has been given this award twice, the first two years ago after joining the ranks of the Blancos de Rueda in Valladolid. “I’m very happy with the award. Having great players like point guards Sergio Rodríguez, Llull and Draper makes my job much easier. This is also an award for the great season we’re having, “said the American who finished with a “Hala Madrid!”. Rudy and other Gelabale were other two Real players on the short list for this award.
The ceremony was held at Madrid’s 40 Café on Gran Via and the event was attended by a number of Real Madrid representatives in addition to prestigious names in the world of sports, including Emiliano Rodríguez and Juan Carlos Sánchez Lázaro, section director. Also in attendance were Alberto Herreros, Madrid technical director and Alberto Ángulo, youth academy director, as well as former Real players and coaches including Pedro Ferrándiz, Lolo Sáinz, Fernando Romay, Sevillano, Joe Arlauckas, Vicente Paniagua and Jose Luis Llorente. One of the most touching moments of the night was a tribute to Sergio Luyk, who passed away five years ago.