In the day today Peppe Poeta officially said goodbye to basketball played, but not to basketball in general: probably very soon he will play the role of team manager in Gianmarco Pozzecco’s new Italbasket. “Peppuniello” he is a true icon of our sport and was able to unite all the fans, even those who hated him sportingly, thanks to a smile or a shrewd joke. Because this is what we are talking about: an extremely shrewd man.

The biggest “loser” in the history of Italian basketball

Yet Poet “He never won a c *** o”, citing one of his famous post-victory statements of the 2018 Italian Cup with the then Auxilium Torino, now officially bankrupt. That success fully represents the professional life of the boy from Battipaglia. Nobody, nobody would ever have bet a cent on that Turin. But then – in a way that is still incomprehensible today – that team, led by a coach who had never coached at national level before that competition and whose MVP was Vander Blue, who arrived in Piedmont a few weeks earlier almost by mistake and who is alive today. between Kosovo and Mexico, he won the second most important title in Italian basketball. The largest underdog of the history of our basketball to win a competition.

Self-made man

Peppone has always had to do it himself. He started from the Battipaglia playground at the end of the nineties, he didn’t know whether to become a great basketball player or a great goalkeeper (so he says) and in the end – luckily for everyone – he realized that shooting from 3 points would have ensured him a long career. The tipping point between being a point guard from minors and a quintet in the national team has arrived when he put 51 in Serie B (unbeaten record, and perhaps unbeatable) with Veroli against Forlì. From that moment it was a very rapid ascentwhich led him to wear the Italbasket jersey for more than 100 times, and then in EuroLega, at Virtus Bologna, at Baskonia and almost at the Olympics. Almost, because we are still talking about the biggest “loser” in the history of Italian basketball. It’s joking, of course.

Peppe Poeta has a big heart

Over the years he stopped looking at the basket with obsession and started giving assists to his teammates as he did with drinks at Hollywood, at the time of Teramo. He himself told us about it in one of the live shows about a year ago: he was leaving with David Moss and Bruno Cerella from Marche, after the 6.15pm match, to have an evening in Milan. True story, of a champion who could write a book with everything that he lived, especially in his time in Turin, the city that became his home. Maybe the book will then write it for real. But Peppe Poeta has such a big heart that with the Vanoli Cremona shirt, his latest club team, in the 2020-2021 season, he graduated (the only degree of his life!) assistman of the championship with 6.8 average assistsmore than champions like Teodosic or Rodriguez, playing 23 minutes per game.

Thanks, Peppe

To say thank you is too little. We at BasketUniverso love him, a bit like he wants Andrea Capobianco. We love him because he has a vision that has nothing to do with that of most people who make decisions in basketball. And it is simply the truth: behind that irony and that character that has been built, there are ideas about the future of Italian basketball that would leave you speechless. We love him because he is a boy who started from nothing and almost made it to the Olympics.

Such people are hard to find. It’s really a shame to lose Poeta as a player, but it’s not goodbye. We are happy that he will continue to delight us with his jokes, his jokes, his smiles, for many years to come. You don’t necessarily need to have a rich palmares to enter people’s hearts and have an impact on Italian basketball. Thanks, Peppe ❤️

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