Credit: Aykut Akici/Euroleague Basketball via Getty Images | BasketNews illustration
Credit Aykut Akici/Euroleague Basketball via Getty Images | BasketNews illustration

BasketNews continues the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague beat edition. Here, you’ll be able to find all the info you need about what happened in the latest EuroLeague round.

Bayern snatching victory over struggling PAO, Real Madrid breaking a 4-year-long home curse vs Crvena Zvezda, Hezonja's showtime, regular basketball by reigning champions, unstoppable Zenit, heated Zalgiris, OLY's achievement, and Laprovittola threes – all of that and more in EuroLeague’s Round 11 beat.

EuroLeague’s beat Round 11

ANOTHER WAY TO DIE. More than 500 noisy Greek fans in the Audi Dome arena.

Former legends-current execs, Frangkiskos Alvertis and Dimitris Diamantidis, traveling all the way to Munich.

Struggling Panathinaikos on their season-best on-the-road performance, culminating in a 70-61 lead with six minutes left to play.

Game over? Hardly. All hell broke loose again for the Greeks, as FC Bayern Munich, powered by a partial score of 20-8, snatched victory from the jaws of defeat, forcing the Greens to their fifth consecutive EuroLeague loss.

Okaro White missed a pair of free throws, Vladimir Lucic made the game-winning three, and Augustine Rubit secured the W for the Bavarian side with 4-of-4 from the charity stripe. Better luck next time.

FROM ZERO TO HERO. For almost 36 minutes, Vladimir Lucic was nowhere to be found on the court. Scoreless, going 0/4 from behind the arc and with one assist being the only positive thing to have come out of his hands, the Serbian forward seemed at a loss.

The last four minutes offered the perfect chance for redemption. First, a tough three to make it 66-70, then another dagger to give Bayern their game-deciding lead (77-76). Another proof that Sasa Djordjevic's praises didn't go in vain.

FROM HERO TO ZERO. Okaro White had made all 10 of his attempted free throws in the season before going to the line to shoot another pair that could have given PAO a four-point lead. The score was 76-74 for the Greens and there were only 46 seconds left. Alas, the EuroLeague rookie misfired twice, allowing Lucic to largely decide the outcome with the biggest shot of the night.

BASKETBALL IS A BOX OF CHOCOLATES. In the post-game presser, Bayern coach Andrea Trinchieri delivered another noteworthy one-liner.

"We didn't shine but to tell you the truth, who cares when you play back to back. It is like Forrest Gump, it is a box of chocolate, and you don't know what kind of game it is going to be."

REAL MADRID'S BIGS CAME UP BIG. Short-handed Crvena Zvezda gave Real Madrid their money's worth for the most part. But the Serbians had no remedy for Walter Tavares, who finished with 15 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 blocks for a PIR of 23, nor Vincent Poirier who followed him with 14 points and 8 rebounds in just 18 minutes.

HOMECOURT DISADVANTAGE. Over the last years, being the home team had been more a huge disadvantage for both Real Madrid and Crvena Zvezda, as the visiting team left with a road victory in the last five games.

The Spanish powerhouse had defeated Zvezda in the last three trips to Belgrade: 73-67 last season, 75-60 the previous one, and 82-79 on March 30, 2018. On the flip side, the Serbian champs beat Real in Madrid 79-77 on January 18, 2021, and 87-83 in the 2017-18 season.

The last home win had taken place almost four years ago when the Real outscored Zvezda 98-68 behind an 11-point, 10-assist double-double by Sergio Llull.

PERSONAL DUNK CONTEST. Mario Hezonja showed off his leaping abilities against ALBA Berlin. First, he posterized the 2.23-meter giant Christ Koumadje and then performed a fast-break windmill dunk.

The Croatian forward finished the duel with 22 points (7/8 2PT, 1/7 3PT, 5/7 FT), 7 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals, 6 drawn fouls, 3 turnovers, and 28 PIR.

WELCOME BACK. Janis Timma came back on the EuroLeague court and made his UNICS debut. In 8 minutes of playing time, he posted 3 points (1/1 3PT), 1 steal, 1 turnover, and 2 PIR.

A NIGHT TO REMEMBER. Christ Koumadje played his seventh EuroLeague game and accumulated 12 points, 12 rebounds, and 21 PIR. The Chad native set new career highs in the latter statistical categories. Moreover, he received compliments from opponents' bench boss Velimir Perasovic: “We had a big problem with their big guy who really caused us issues.”

BEAUBOIS' WEEK. After arranging a stellar performance (29 PTS, 7/10 3PT, 5 REB, 33 PIR) against OLY in the first double week game, Rodrigue Beaubois led Anadolu Efes with 17 points (4/6 2PT, 3/6 3PT), 7 assists, 3 rebounds, 1 steal, and 24 PIR versus Monaco.

“We know we have a lot of guys that can shoot. Sometimes, it doesn't go in, unfortunately, but when we feel good and shoot the ball, usually good things happen,” Beaubois commented after the victorious game over Monaco.

2 POINTS AWAY. The 58-40 score after 20 minutes included Efes's third-best scoring total before halftime in its 490 games in the competition. The club record is 60 points against LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne on January 17, 2020. Back then, Efes ended up winning 101-74 behind 29 points from Shane Larkin.

MIKE JAMES EFFECT? Monaco started the fourth quarter with a 6-0 run to cut their deficit to six points (67-73). But a few moments later, Mike James asked to be subbed out and left to the locker room.

He returned to the bench later on but did not step back on the floor. With James absent, Efes went on a 15-0 push to run away from Monaco and secure a 19-point victory.

"I see him having a cut, and there was some blood. I will speak with the doctor again. We’ll have a look," commented Zvezdan Mitrovic post-game regarding Mike James.

TOP EUROLEAGUE GUARDS. It was a clash between two individual EuroLeague titans, however, the statistical line went off the mark. Mike James finished the game with 4 points (2/5 2PT, 0/1 3PT), 4 rebounds, 4 assists, and 1 turnover in 18 minutes of action. Vasilije Micic had 6 points (3/5 2PT, 0/4 3PT), 1 rebound, 4 assists, 1 steal, 1 turnover, and 7 PIR.

In this double game week that was full of positives for Efes, Vasilije Micic’s shooting slump (1/14 beyond the arc) remained a weak concern.

CHAMPION DISPLAY. Ergin Ataman was delightful with his team performance and noted that the champions are back: “That is a very important week for us. Because we started to play our regular basketball that we played last 3 years. Our supporters started to really join the game. This is a champion team, and we will fight again on this level.”

SPLENDID RECOVERY. After Zenit lost to Spanish giants, Real and Barcelona, the Russian club won five games in a row. Yesterday, they edged out AX Armani Exchange Milan (74-70) and caught the Italians on the tournament table, sharing 3-4 positions.

TENDENCY. This was the fourth game between Zenit and Milan. Just like the previous three, this one was decided by single digits. Three of the four games to date have now been decided by 6 or fewer points. Home teams won each of the previous three games, just as this one, and only once in four games between these two squads has either team score 80 or more points.

BIG MEN DEPARTMENT. The frontcourt was dominant for Zenit. Jordan Mickey posted 17 points (5/7 2PT, 1/3 3PT, 4/5 FT), 4 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 block, 1 turnover, and 18 PIR. Arturas Gudaitis added 13 points (5/6 2PT, 3/5 FT), 7 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 blocks, and 19 PIR.

“It was emotional and special for me because it is my former team and I really wanted to win,” Gudaitis spoke after the victorious game. “Today was all about fighting.”

“It was really special. I am super-happy for the club, for the guys. Credit to our bigs – Mickey, Gudaitis, Zubkov, Poythress, everybody,” Jordan Loyd added.

DOUBLE WEEK – GAME CHANGER. After starting the season with 9 defeats in a row, Zalgiris Kaunas managed to finish the EuroLeague double week with two victories. The Lithuanian champions beat the visiting Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul (86-75), which suffered the third loss in a row.

NOT ONLY MENTAL LEADERS. Two Lithuanian athletes, Edgaras Ulanovas and Mantas Kalnietis showed their leadership on the court, arranging game-deciding performances. Playing against his former team, Ulanovas enjoyed his best game this season so far. He accumulated 18 points (3/5 2PT, 3/4 3PT, 3/3 FT), 5 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, 1 turnover, and 21 PIR.

Kalnietis contributed with his first-ever career double-double in the EuroLeague. The 35-year-old finished the game with 11 points (1/2 2PT, 3/6 3PT), career-high 11 assists, 1 rebound, 1 block, 3 turnovers, and 15 PIR.

This two players show was not missed by Fenerbahce head coach Sasa Djordjevic.

“It was a great play-making night for Kalnietis, he was controlling the game. Ulanovas hit some crucial shots in the moments when we could have made a comeback,” commented the Serbian specialist.

HEARTBREAKING LOSSES. Djordjevic admitted that nail-biting setbacks had a negative effect on his team.

“I think it’s in our heads. We lost the first few games with a combined 6 points difference. It’s unique. We started with the first one in Athens, and as soon as we lost that game, I said it will stand in our heads for a long, and it kind of hurt us.

We had some really tough losses against top teams in EuroLeague, we always showed fighting spirit, and sometimes it’s inside the heads. The only medicine is a win,” Djordjevic told.

STUNNING START. Olympiacos dominated in the first quarter against Maccabi, winning it 35-8. The last time a EuroLeague team won a single period by 27 was back in the 2001 playoffs when Kinder Bologna outscored Addeco Estudiantes 39–12 in the 2nd quarter of Game 1.

FLUCTUATIONS. Olympiacos finished off the game against Anadolu Efes in the worst way possible, suffering a 20-3 partial score in the fourth quarter. However, after a historic low came a historic high for the Reds, as they were up by 27 (35-8) after ten minutes into their Maccabi game.

“Indeed. After our worst quarter came our best one. This shows the team's character. Our ego was hurt, both individually and as a team,” Bartzokas declared post-game.

POOR OFFENSE. Maccabi had an offensive night to forget as the team made 16-of-39 two-pointers (41.1%) and just 10-of-35 three-pointers (28.6%). They also turned the ball over 9 times.

RETURN. It was a happy return for two former Bitci Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz players, Johannes Voigtmann and Toko Shengelia, to Buesa Arena. Voigtmann and Shengelia alongside Clyburn were the big three for CSKA. Voigtmann had 16 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists, and 18 PIR. Clyburn added 16 too, Shengelia supplied 15 points and 5 rebounds.

“Obviously, we fought from the beginning of the game until the end,” Shengelia said after a close win. “I want to congratulate Baskonia for their performance. It is very emotional, always, very sentimental to come to this city. I have nothing but big, big love to these people, to the city, and to this club.”

KEEP THE BALL SAFE IN YOUR HANDS. What allowed CSKA to win the game, was turnovers. Baskonia finished the game with 20 turnovers, one shy of its season-high mark - 21 against Olympiacos Piraeus in Round 1.

“I think that we, the technical staff, don't have a doubt about the key to this game are our 20 turnovers. It is a game that we lost by 6 points and we had 20 turnovers all over the roster, 10 from our point guards. You cannot do that against CSKA, or against other teams with less quality,” stressed Neven Spahija.

STEP-UP. Nick Calathes got injured in the first double week game against CSKA. However, Nicolas Laprovittola came in big and had his career-best EuroLeague night to help Barca take care of LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne (80-60).

Lapro recorded his EuroLeague career-high in points, rebounds, and 3-pointers, posting 25 points (1/1 2PT, 7/12 3PT, 2/2 FT), 7 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 turnover, and 28 PIR.

“I think the team played very well. We won by 20 points in a tough arena. No matter the injuries, and who is on the court, we have to stick together,” said the Argentinian guard.

His previous personal records were 19 points, 5 threes, and 5 rebounds.

DEFENSE IS THE KEY. Barcelona did not allow a three-pointer in the first half and held ASVEL to just 3 triples made until the midway mark of the fourth quarter. ASVEL finished with just 6-for-15 three-point shooting, but those 40% were still better than 39.5% on two-pointers. The hosts also had just 7 assists for the night.

BIRTHDAY BOY. Rokas Jokubaitis celebrated his 21st birthday on November 19. He had a solid game over ASVEL, scoring 8 points (4/7 2PT), grabbing 3 boards, dishing 5 assists, and collecting 10 PIR.

“The EuroLeague season is very long, only 11 games have passed. It is nice we are in the first place. We are working, our mentality is to win every game. We are on the right path,” told the Lithuanian player.

After the match, Jokubaitis was bathed by his teammates in Barca's locker room.

TOP Plays of Round 11

Records of Round 11

PIR
Lorenzo  Brown
Lorenzo Brown

Lorenzo Brown (31)

Points
Nicolas  Laprovittola
Nicolas Laprovittola

Nicolas Laprovittola (25)

Rebounds
Christ  Koumadje
Christ Koumadje

 

 

 

Christ Koumadje (12)

 

 

 

Assists
Mantas  Kalnietis
Mantas Kalnietis

Mantas Kalnietis (11)

Steals
John  Brown
John Brown

 

 

 

John Brown, Wade Baldwin, Alexey Shved (4 each)

 

 

 

Blocks
Walter  Tavares
Walter Tavares

Walter Tavares (4)

3-pointers made
Nicolas  Laprovittola
Nicolas Laprovittola
Nicolas Laprovittola (7)

Results of Round 11

81-78
79-67
85-71
98-77
74-70
86-75
90-73
74-80
60-80

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