Credit: BasketNews/D.Repečka
Credit BasketNews/D.Repečka

CSKA Moscow (0-1) will be leaving Milan in a very bad mood. 

Player of the Game
Nicolo  Melli
EFF
24
Nicolo Melli
Points 15
Accuracy 3-5
Rebounds 6
Assists 1

Russian champions 74-84 (29-21, 16-23, 14-18, 15-22) lost their Turkish Airlines EuroLeague season opener against AX Armani Exchange Milan (1-0). To make things worse, it looks like Nikola Milutinov suffered a serious injury.

With 8 minutes left to play, the hosts were leading by only three points (62-59), but then the Italian club made a game-changing push.

Shavon Shields made a jumper, Sergio Rodriguez converted a lay-up, Giampaolo Ricci added his 2-pointer, and Armani Exchange went on an 8-2 run, which allowed them to build 9 points lead (70-61).

CSKA tried to come back and cut the deficit to 6 points, but Sergio Rodriguez answered with a 2-pointer, Nicolo Melli made both of his free throws and restored a double-digit lead to Armani Exchange (76-65).

"We started the game, and we were a little bit timid, but then we gained intensity, and the level of our defense changed," after the game said coach Messina. "We allowed 29 points in the first quarter, which wasn't ideal, but in the entire second half, we only allowed 29 points, which proves how our defense took over the game."

Melli made a fantastic return to the EuroLeague after finishing the game with 15 points (2/4 2PT, 1/1 3PT, 8/11 FT), 6 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 1 turnover, and 24 PIR.

Shavon Shields added 17 points (6/7 2PT, 1/4 3PT, 2/3 FT), 7 rebounds, 5 assists, 1 steal, and 23 PIR.

The game started in the worst possible for the visitors. After playing for only 2 minutes, Milutinov fell on the floor and screamed out of pain while holding his right knee.

3-pointers this season

28%
8,0
Points made: 8,0
Accuracy: 27,6%
Place in standings: 4
Record max: 8
Record min: 8
Most made 3FGs: Nikita Kurbanov

The Serbian forward was fighting for the loose ball, but then Luigi Datome brought him down and fell on Milutinov’s knee. CSKA’s forward left the court only with the help of his teammates.

“It doesn’t look good, unfortunately”, Itoudis said about Milutinov. CSKA’s head coach also confirmed that the team is waiting for MRI results.

Despite the victory, Messina also didn't forget about Milutinov and wished him all the best.

"I want to wish good luck to Milutinov, he just got back from an injury. I also want to add that it was good to play again in front of our crowd, the fans were definitely a factor". 

Iffe Lundberg was the leader of the visitors. Danish international scored 13 points (2/4 2PT, 1/4 3PT, 6/6 FT) and added 7 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 steals, and 23 PIR.

AX Armani Exchange Milan: Sergio Rodriguez 17 (4/6 2PT 3/6 3PT), Shavon Shields 17 (6/7 2PT, 7 REB, 5 AST), Nicolo Melli 15 (8/11 FT, 6 REB), Kyle Hines 13 (5/6 2PT), Devon Hall 11 (4/7 2PT).

CSKA Moscow: Iffe Lundberg 13 (6/6 FT, 7 REB, 6 AST), Will Clyburn 12 (2/6 3PT), Nikita Kurbanov 10 (2/3 3PT), Alexey Shved 9 (1/5 3PT), Daniel Hackett 9, Johannes Voigtmann 8 (7 REB), Tornike Shengelia 7 (1/7 2PT, 6 REB).

Highlights

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Milano Armani Exchange
Maskvos CSKA
52%
31/60
Field goals
37%
24/65
32
Rebounds
39
15
Assists
13
7
Steals
4
90
Efficiency
79
23
Fouls
19

Best players

Sergio  Rodriguez
17 PTS
7/12 FG
0/0 FT
Gabriel  Lundberg
13 PTS
3/8 FG
6/6 FT
Shavon  Shields
7 REB
6 DREB
1 OREB
CSKA Moscow
Few players
7 REB
Shavon  Shields
5 As
0 TO
28 MIN
Gabriel  Lundberg
6 As
0 TO
26 MIN
Nicolo  Melli
24 EFF
50% 2P%
100% 3P%
Gabriel  Lundberg
23 EFF
50% 2P%
25% 3P%