Real Madrid has made official this Tuesday the signing of French base Thomas Heurtel (1.89m and 32 years) to reinforce the team’s leadership, unguarded after Facundo Campazzo’s departure to the NBA in November. Six months after his controversial departure from Barça and after a few months on a long weekend at Asvel Villeurbanne, with time to win the League and the French Cup, Heurtel commits himself to a season with the Whites. “I am a player who gives everything on the court and one of my goals was to work with Laso. His philosophy corresponds to mine. The game aggressive and fast in attack favors me ”, he explained in his presentation video as a new Real Madrid player. A marriage that could be closed in December, but was aborted in the middle of the controversy. Heurtel had the approval of Barça to manage his departure after confirming the break with Jasikevicius, but the Catalans were counting on their destiny to be the Turkish Fenerbahçe and when they discovered that the negotiations were with Madrid the conflict broke out.
The Barça executives removed the French player from the team and made the decision that he should not return on the same flight as the rest of the Barça expedition after having played a Euroleague match in Istanbul against Efes. The case remained entrenched until, at the beginning of January, Heurtel agreed to the termination of his contract, with the agreement to receive a large part of his annual file, around 2.5 million euros, in exchange for not being able to incorporate that season to any ACB team. A veto to Madrid, which in those days agreed to his signing deferred for this campaign. The air bridge between the two greats of Spanish basketball could be completed in the coming days with the arrival of Hanga to the white team and the departure of Laprovittola to Barça.
Heurtel becomes the 36th signing of the Laso era: six point guards (Draper, Campazzo, Randle, Laprovittola, Alocén so far), 13 outside and 17 centers. A list that Carroll started in 2011, through which emblems such as Nocioni and Ayón have passed, and also half a dozen reinforcements that were only one year in the white team. In his 11 Euroleague appearances, Heurtel He has averaged 9.7 points, 5.4 assists and a PIR of 11.2. He is the fifth maximum historical assistant of the maximum continental competition and has the highest average among the best every 40 minutes (9.4). In addition, he led the assists section two seasons in a row with an average of 6.3 (2014-15) and 7.9 (2015-16). Trained in the lower categories of Pau Orthez, Heurtel made his debut at the age of 18 with the French first team in the 2007-08 season. Later, he went through Strasbourg before starting his first stage in Spain to be part of Alicante (2010-11) and Baskonia (2011-14). In December 2014 he signed for Turkish Anadolu Efes, with whom he won a Cup and a Super Cup in two and a half seasons before returning to the ACB League to sign for Barça. As a Barça player he was a key piece and mvp in the conquests of the 2018 and 2019 Cups against Madrid. Now he will reinforce the whites in his rebuilding process.
Since the conquest of the tenth European Cup in Belgrade, in 2018, Madrid have suffered the departure of emblems such as Doncic and Campazzo to the NBA, the erosion of their veterans, the recent retirement of their captain, Felipe Reyes, and the loss long-lasting strut like Randolph (Achilles tendon rupture). A decapitalization to which the youth squad Usman Garuba can join in the coming days, pending the draft July 29. Among the incorporations of the whites these years, Prepelic did not catch on, Mickey and Mejri had a testimonial step, and both Laprovittola and Tyus did not settle in the team and have already confirmed their departure. French center Vincent Poirier (2.13m and 27 years) anticipated his arrival to compensate for the losses in the paint and help Tavares. To reinforce the base position, in addition to Heurtel, the club has closed the signing of the American Nigel Williams-Goss (1.88m and 26 years). And the arrival of French power forward Guerschon Yabusele will also be confirmed in the coming days. (2,02m and 25 years old) and the Hungarian forward Adam Hanga (2,01m and 32 years old), who will take the airlift from the Palau. Laso will direct the renewal of the squad from the Madrid bench after his contract extension until 2023. One revolution similar to the one he started in 2014. Then, the whites signed a new quintet: the one formed by Campazzo, Rivers, Maciulis, Nocioni and Ayón. Now the Madridista rearmament will underpin the national commitment they made last summer with the signings of Carlos Alocén and Alberto Abalde, 20 and 25 years old respectively.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.