Credit: Sonia Canada/Getty Images
Credit Sonia Canada/Getty Images

Real Madrid (11-2) edged out Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv (7-6) 72-70 (20-18, 17-20, 13-21, 22-11) to continue Maccabi's losing streak in Madrid. It was the eleventh defeat in a row for Maccabi at WiZink Center.

Player of the Game
Walter  Tavares
Walter Tavares
Points 9
Accuracy 4-5
Rebounds 8
Assists 1

It was also a special day for Pablo Laso, being at the helm of Real Madrid in his 800th match.

The Royal club opened the last quarter, arranging a 6-0 run (56-59) thanks to Vincent Poirier and Fabien Causeur buckets. Though, Scottie Wilbekin and Jalen Reynolds let Maccabi breathe easier (63-56).

Both squads struggled to score, eventually, Fabien Causeur made a floater to cut Real's deficit to 5 points (60-65) with 4:23 to play. Thomas Heurtel added a trey (63-65) while Kennan Evans scored on the other end (67-63).

Walter Tavares made a strong dunk and reduced the gap between the teams to one-shot (65-67), 1:42 were left on the clock. Thomas Heurtel nailed a crucial three-pointer to give his team a minimal lead (68-67) with 1:17 to go. Both teams exchanged with unsuccessful attacks, moreover, Maccabi could not inbound the ball in 5 seconds.

Heurtel continued his solo performance, draining a duo with 28 seconds to play (70-67). However, Derrick Williams responded and tied the game at 70, as 13.9 seconds were left. On the other side, Yabusele hit a game-winning layup with 3 seconds to go. Maccabi did not have the timeouts and Ante Zizic lost control of the ball.

Match hero Guerschon Yabusele was a top performer for the Royal club, registering 15 points (7/10 2PT, 0/2 3PT, 1/1 FT), 5 rebounds, 3 steals, 2 turnovers, 3 drawn fouls, and 17 PIR.

"That is what the coaches drew [on the go-ahead shot], so I had to get ready, get the ball, and just try to score the ball and win the game. We had to stay together. This was really important," said Yabusele post-game.

Another Frenchman Thomas Heurtel added 15 points (4/8 2PT, 2/5 3PT, 1/2 FT), 5 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 turnovers, 2 drawn fouls, and 13 PIR.

"We didn't have a great game, we were not shooting well, but it's true that we kept fighting until the end. The conversation [in the final timeout] was pretty clear. We thought that probably we were going to go with a big squat, trying to switch in every ball screen.

So, somehow I tried to give the ball to somebody who could attack the basket quickly without a pick-and-roll. That way, that was going to be a straight one-on-one. That's what we did and Guerschon [Yabusele] executed it great. The attack was right and he got the winning basket," Pablo Laso explained the last attack.

Scottie Wilbekin was a top scorer for Maccabi, posting 14 points (3/8 2PT, 1/6 3PT, 5/5 FT), 1 rebound, 5 assists, 1 steal, 4 turnovers, 6 drawn fouls, and 12 PIR.

Real jumped into the match successfully, being front by 10 points (16-6). However, Maccabi closed the first period with a 10-2 run (18-20).

After the second quarter going neck to neck, Maccabi locked up Real in the third period, letting them score 12 points per quarter. Good defense passed on a solid offense. Keenan Evans, Oz Blayzer, and Scottie Wilbekin initiated Maccabi's 10-1 push to create a 9-point (59-50) advantage, going into the decisive 10 minutes of the match.

Real's forwards Trey Thompkins and Anthony Randolph did not participate in the match.

Real: Guerschon Yabusele 15 (5 REB), Thomas Heurtel 15 (5 REB, 5 AST), Vincent Poirier 11 (5 REB), Walter Tavares 9 (8 REB).

Maccabi: Scottie Wilbekin 14 (5 AST), Keenan Evans 10, Ante Zizic 10.


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Madrido Real
Tel Avivo Maccabi
Field goals

Best players

Thomas  Heurtel
15 PTS
6/13 FG
1/2 FT
Scottie  Wilbekin
14 PTS
4/14 FG
5/5 FT
Walter  Tavares
Roman  Sorkin
Thomas  Heurtel
5 As
2 TO
22 MIN
Scottie  Wilbekin
5 As
4 TO
27 MIN
Walter  Tavares
17 EFF
80% 2P%
- 3P%
Ante  Zizic
13 EFF
83% 2P%
- 3P%