Giorgi Bezhanishvili and the #21 ranked Illnois Fighting Illini were on the verge of making the program’s first NCAA Tournament since 2013 when the postseason got canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The sophomore forward from Rustavi, Georgia realizes that the world is facing problems that are much bigger than basketball, but it still hurts to think about what they missed out on.
Illinois could have really done some damage in this year’s tournament, and if you are to use 1xbet promo code to be on next year’s tournament, Illinois is a sleeper team you should consider. Bezhanishvili, who spoke on media teleconference yesterday, knows that his team would have won some games in the tourney.
“I’m heartbroken not only for the guys who transferred (Alan Griffin and Tevian Jones) but also that we didn’t make the tournament,” he said.
“I mean, we did make it, it just never happened. We put in so, so much work the past two years, not just one year but the past two years. Guys have been really, really, really working to achieve going to the tournament. We felt like we were not a team to go to the tournament just to play one game.”
“We still feel like we have the talent and we have the coaching staff and everything to make a deep run. It’s really heartbreaking.”
Giorgi Bezhanishvili and Kipper Nichols are the only Illini basketball players who are still currently in Champaign. For Giorigi, it would have been very difficult at best, unsafe at worst to get home, which is half a world away.
He’s in his apartment by himself right now, but if you know how big his personality is, then you’re also aware that he certainly won’t get bored while quarantined.
“My daughter showed me all of his Tik Toks that he does,” said Illini coach Brad Underwood.
“We all know Giorgi, he can stay entertained pretty easily. He told me he was trying to master walking on his hands.”
Speaking of those Tik Toks, you must see this hilarious one he made of his post move work that he’s been putting in. The background music just really makes it pop.
“I was just spending time on Tik Tok and that song came on, and I just like that sound, and I started playing that sound,” Bezhanishvili said Tuesday afternoon.
“Then I saw a basketball laying on the floor so I just picked it up and started moving with it- such a random video to be honest. Just randomly happened; it was a fun video!”
Bezhanishvili is a very funny, interesting, deep guy with a lot of varied interests. An expert dancer, he was in dance clubs from ages 6-12 where mastered: the rumba, salsa, samba, jive, foxtrot, cha cha, tango and waltz.
Asked how he keeps his sense of humor through these uncertain at best, frightening at worst, times he had a great response.
“What else, really can you do at this time? He answered.
“The fact is you can’t leave the house, you should not leave the house, and you are in the house. So what can you do in the house?”
“Should you be worried the whole time, watching CNN and all that stuff? That even plays with your head a little more. Or you can make the choice to use this time to relax, have a sense of humor a little bit, make some jokes. I’m all by myself, I’m still trying to have fun, making those videos, making people laugh.”
“Time passes…if you are able to get through adversity with a smile, with humor it’s a great thing, I encourage everybody, it doesn’t have to be videos, it could be I don’t know, meditation, there are so many things you can do, and I encourage people to get out of their comfort zone to do things that will influence them positively.”
Bezhanishvili is great at giving advice, but he’s also done well in taking it, from a family member.
“My brother told me, ‘hey, just sit down on your couch and relax a little bit. I said okay. I felt a little uncomfortable because I’m always running…” Giorgi said
“You never really get time to sit down and relax. t has no purpose, but sometimes you need to sit down and relax.”
Bezhanishvili then continued, engaging in deeper thought:
“Think about stuff. Think about their own — I don’t know how to explain it — their own soul, themselves. What are they looking for? Why? What really matters? What doesn’t matter? Maybe some people don’t know their families well enough. Get to know them the most.
“I know pretty much every little detail about my brother and my mom, or my grandparents. Just spend time with your family, try to relax and let the time pass. I think time will be able to take care of all.”
Try to remember what Bezhanishvili said here, and come back to it when you have a rough day. In fact, bookmark this page, and read what he said over and over, because a lot of adverse times are still ahead for all of us with this pandemic.
Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly appears on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation.