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"Being a Cantorino means one thing: never give up"

“Being a Cantorino means one thing: never give up”

Greetings from Alessandro Palermo, Acqua S. Bernardo Press Officer: “I still relate to Bancoto and some guys. Jefferson and Mitchell, what kinds”

“Good luck Alessandro!” The banner of Eagles during Canto Brescia, dedicated to Alessandro Palermo, hit the sign. Two tears crossed the face of the Kanto basketball team’s communications director, who left his post after five seasons. As of next week, he will become the head of social networks for the Italian Basketball League in Bologna. A nice tribute, which also becomes an opportunity for a journey between what is said and unspoken, for the beautiful things and difficult moments he experienced in Kanto Basketball in 5 years. Always with grace, humanity and equanimity.

Let’s start from the end, from the Eagles banner. Did you expect it?

of course not. It was an extraordinary moment, as it is a special privilege only for the big players or for a few coaches. Not to mention the press official.

Means that…?

That I will leave a good memory and that I will be able to leave Kanto with my head held high, with the certainty that I have done a lot for this club, albeit withdrawn. Then I had a special relationship with the eagles: I realized, from Varese, thanks to them that “Cantorino” does not mean that I was born in Canto, or live there. But that means never giving up.

What does the new mission consist of?

I will be the Digital Project Manager from Legabasket. After translation, I will have to bring projects, ideas, social media strategies and I will maintain relationships with TV. I will be the contact person for the heads of the 16 press offices of Club A. I will have a coordination team. I wasn’t looking for this job, they wanted me. And I hesitated, because I am very attached to Kanto. But if President Gandhini calls you and receives you in person, it means that they believed very much in me.

But how did you get started in Kanto?

A little by chance. Luca Rossini was going to Sardinia for work, I told him “good luck” and applied. While everyone was running away from Kanto, I got caught. Irina Gerasimenko was impressed with my proposals.

In five years, three presidents. Do we make “arrangement”?

Irina has always appreciated me very much, and so did Dmitry Gerasimenko: I would never be able to speak ill of them. Marson believed in me so much, no one like him might have made me feel so important. Allievi is a center of wisdom, class, and composure: an icon I feel close to, like a family member.

Let’s talk about coaches…

The person I’ve remained most attached to is Cesar Bancuto, a man of the past I still feel for. Almost bound, say Pachutin. I see Brinza more as a friend than a coach and he has already invited me to Pistoia. Sudanese? I am happy to normalize relations with him last season, after a complicated first year. I also want to mention Sakiti and Pochi: Few people in my league have been able to work with two totems like them, even if only for a short time.

And what about the players? They do not hesitate to the headquarters…

The late Pierfrancesco Petit always told me not to give them too much confidence and I thought I was a professional. But I may have had a deeper relationship with Bucarelli, Stefanelli, Cousin, Becchia, Simeone, and Cornoh.

Hardest days in Kanto?

Those who predicted the outbreak of the crisis. La Gazzetta dello Sport predicted that we were on the verge of bankruptcy. In an entire conference room we wrote a letter in which we all said what would happen to Kanto. We played Pesaro on Monday: I greeted all the journalists present, and I thought it would be the last game of the Canto basketball team in Serie A.

How did you live those days?

There was uncertainty about everything. But this is the season that I hold most in my heart, 2018/19. We have united on such exciting levels that the hashtag #uniti has occurred to us. We gave everything, at massive sacrifices, only for the good of the club, without certainty.

What are the lessons you learned?

That when you hit rock bottom, it’s hard to go back. But after that, everything is easier. I believe that human relations were fundamental to the birth of the new Kanto. Especially in a box like this, prestigious but still small: every aspect is experienced, and great networks of contacts are created.

Any beautiful wallpaper?

We enjoyed with Jefferson and Mitchell. Their coverage was a feat, reporters told us a few dances, but that’s also part of the role: in fact, they only rehearsed the day before the match. Another good episode with Tony Cappellari: he forced me to say that there were 2,500 spectators in the stadium, and in fact there were half of it. Bickering with reporters was inevitable.

More thrillers?

Coppa Italia vs Milan, without Culpeper and Crosarol: a game already written. But upon exiting the elevator with Gorini, our photographer, we said to ourselves, “Let’s win.” We won very well, but I had a fever and didn’t enjoy it.

As a press officer, you have also been at the center of many charitable campaigns. What did they leave you?

I have always enjoyed being seen in society as a sensitive person. There were beautiful and touching experiences with the children in the hospital.

And your ideal quintuples in these five years?

Gaines, Chappelle, Mitchell for Talent, Odano Tech, Jefferson. Sixth man Thomas. Coach Bankuto.

You will go to work at Lega, deal with social networks. But what is air in communication?

They tell me I’m an old man, because I take notes on a notepad: The fragrance of paper and buying off newsstands are unbeatable. But now it is undeniable that 85% of communications are directed to digital. With immediacy and simplicity, she is satiated by the audience’s thirst for knowledge.

Shall we say hello?

I thank everyone I met and worked with me. But I mention two and others will understand: Diego Fumagali and Walter Gorini, in the past five years I have seen more of them than of my girlfriend. El Spoo.

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