Maccabi Tel Aviv and Real Madrid took to the floor in the second semi-final of EuroLeague Final Four 2011in Barcelona looking to join Panathinaikos in the Final. While the game may have been taking place on Spanish soil it was noticeable inside the Arena that Real fans were outnumbered by Maccabi fans by as many as ten to one. In a sea of yellow shirts, the game could have been being played in Tel Aviv itself. Ante Tomic opened the scoring in the game for Real and it was quickly followed by a nice jump shot by Felipe Reyes as Real started strongly. It was Guy Pnini who finally got Maccabi off and running with a big triple and by the time Jeremy Pargo also converted from downtown, he had tied the game up at 8-8 with just under three minutes to play in the opening period.
An unsportsmanlike foul on Richard Hendrix gave Real Madrid the opportunity to restore their advantage but Ante Tomic missed both resulting free-throws. Both teams were tied down offensively but another outside score, this time by Pnini again helped his team into a 14-10 lead with less than a minute remaining in the first quarter. He was then back in the thick of the action after he was called for an unsportsmanlike foul for a heavy foul uner the hoop on D'or Fischer who cut the gap to leave Maccabi Tel Aviv 14-12 in front after the first period.
David Blu continued the excellent work of Maccabi from range as he buried a three-pointer and that kept the small numbr of Real fans even quieter than they already were. Reyes went to work inside and got one to drop as Real looked to get some momentum. That was always going to be difficult with Pnini still having the hot hand from downtown with yet another triple and when Sofoklis Schortstanitis flushed one down it was time for a Madrid time-out and 22-14 behind with 6:30 to go until the midway point of the game.
Madrid needed a lift badly and it was provided in the form of a first three-pointer of the game. Pablo Prigioni took Real to one of seven from outside which was in stark contrast to Maccabi who were five of seven from the arc and that was the story of the game. Real were always going to compete inside with the class and warrior like play from Reyes and he brought the Spanish side to within one shot of Maccabi at 22-19 approaching the midway point of the second period. A nice reverse lay-up by Chuck Eidson kept Maccabi in front but Prigioni was beginning to warm up as another three ensured Madrid posted an 8-2 run. That was the extended further with another score as Madrid tied things up through Tomic at 24-24.
Maccabi then got their noses back in thefront sparked by a big dunk by Hendrix but Tomic was supporting Reyes well for Madrid to keep things tight as the teams left court with Maccabi 32-29 ahead at the half.
They extended their advantage during the early exchanges when the game resumed with Schortstanitis getting the job done inside and then one of the highlights of day one as Jeremy Pargo threw one down to send the Maccabi fans into absolute raptures and take his team out to a 40-32 lead. After a quiet first half, Sergio Llull finally came alive with a three-pointer for Real but Maccabi supporters were still singing when Pargo then finished inside after a great spin-move.
After being pretty much the sole threat from downtown during the first half for Madrid, Pablo Prigioni continued his good work after draning another from the corner and that brought the Spanish side to within four at 42-38 with five minutes of the penultimate quarter remaining. Carlos Suarez then drained a triple from the top with a hand right in his face and suddenly Real had the momentum and David Blatt was looking agitated in the sideline. It was also around the same time Felipe Reyes moved on to a double-double in the game.
However Maccabi had other ideas and Blatt looked a lot more comfortable when his team made a big push in the closing minutes of the quarter. With 90 seconds remaining they led 50-43 and in a pivotal moment of the game, D'Or Fischer threw the ball away from under his own basket on the in-bound and that gave a gleeful Chuck Eidson a three point play as they went into a double figure lead at 53-43. While Real scored two of the last thre baskets in the period, Maccabi still held a healthy lead at 55-47 heading into the last ten minutes.
Real needed a strong start but it didn't arrive and they found themselves 14 points behind at 63-49 after successive threes by Eidson and Pargo. Maccabi threatened to blow the game wide open and Madrid were not yet on the floor but certainly on the ropes and in need of some inspiration. Some might argue that with six minutes left when David Blu put Maccabi 17 ahead, Real needed divine intervention. You would think by this point the Spanish team might have learned their lesson and tightened up their perimeter defence but the shooting class from the arc continued as Eidson made another triple.
Maccabi had one foot in the Final already and only a collapse of spectacularly epic proportions would deny them. When Schortsanitis scored inside and took it out to a twenty point margin it was all over at 71-51. Real could make no impression whatsoever as the downtown party for Maccabi continued to the final buzzer as they ran out comfortable 82-63 winners to face Panathinaikos in the 2011 Final.
The win really came courtesy of a stupendous 12 triples in the game with Chuck Eidson finishing with 19 points including 3 of 4 from outside as well as 6 steals and 6 rebounds. Guy Pnini was 4 of 6 from the arc while for Real, Reyes had a double-double of 15 points and 14 rebounds.
Baskonia Vitoria Gasteiz (Liga Endesa) agreed terms with 28-year old American small forward Chase Budinger (201-100kg-88, college: Arizona). He was with Brooklyn Nets in presason but was released 10 days ago. The last season Budinger played at the Suns in NBA where in 17 games he had 3.2ppg and 1.7rpg. He also played earlier that season for the Pacers in NBA. In 49 games he recorded 4.4ppg, 2.5rpg and 1.0apg. Budinger also spent pre-season at the Timberwolves earlier that year. In 2009 he... [read more]
Baskonia Vitoria Gasteiz (Liga Endesa) agreed terms with 28-year old American small forward Chase Budinger (201-100kg-88, college: Arizona). He was with Brooklyn Nets in presason but was released 10 days ago. The last season Budinger played at the Suns in NBA where in 17 games he had 3.2ppg and 1.7rpg. He also played earlier that season for the Pacers in NBA. In 49 games he recorded 4.4ppg, 2.5rpg and 1.0apg. Budinger also spent pre-season at the Timberwolves earlier that year. In 2009 he was drafted by Detroit Pistons (NBA) in second round (44th overall). The former University of Arizona standoutis in his eighth season in pro basketball. Budinger was voted Pac-10 1st Team back in 2009 at his college time. Budinger has played also professionally for other NBA teams like Houston Rockets and Minnesota Timberwolves.
Nando De Colo claims Euroleague weekly honour - 1 day ago
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French Nando De Colo (196-SG-87) put on an extraordinary performance in the last round for league's leader CSKA and that's him to receive a Eurobasket.com Player of the Week award for round 3. The 29-year old shooting guard had the game-high 26 points adding four rebounds and six assists for CSKA in his team's victory, helping them to beat Anadolu Efes (#14, 0-3), the league's bottom-ranked team 93-87. It allowed CSKA to jump to the first place in the Euroleague. They maintain a perfect r... [read more]
French Nando De Colo (196-SG-87) put on an extraordinary performance in the last round for league's leader CSKA and that's him to receive a Eurobasket.com Player of the Week award for round 3. The 29-year old shooting guard had the game-high 26 points adding four rebounds and six assists for CSKA in his team's victory, helping them to beat Anadolu Efes (#14, 0-3), the league's bottom-ranked team 93-87. It allowed CSKA to jump to the first place in the Euroleague. They maintain a perfect record without any lost game in the league. The season is still on an early stage, but CSKA already had a very good start winning all 3 without losing a single one. In the team's last game De Colo had a remarkable 58.3% from 2-point range. He has many years of experience at CSKA, through which he has constantly improved. De Colo has impressive league stats. He is league's best scorer averaging so far 22.7ppg. De Colo is in league's top in and averages solid 53.1% FGP and 50.0% from behind 3-point line.
The second most remarkable performance in last round's games was young shooting guard Marko Guduric (196-SG-95) of Crvena Zvezda. Guduric impressed basketball fans with 21 points, 4 rebounds and 5 assists. Of course Crvena Zvezda cruised to a 76-65 relatively comfortable win over FC Barcelona (1-2). The season is still at the very beginning and this victory may help a lot. Let's wait for the next round. Guduric is well-known by Crvena Zvezda fans and he already established his position as one of team's most reliable players. He belongs to the best scorers in the league with 15.0ppg (#9). He also recorded 3.3 assists per game.
The third best performed player last round was Guinea-Bissau Colton Iverson (212-C-89, agency: Pensack Sports) of Maccabi T-A (#12). Iverson scored 17 points and grabbed five rebounds. He was a key player of Maccabi T-A, leading his team to a 98-92 win against Galatasaray (#16, 0-3). With bigger assistance of his teammates, Iverson could try to bring Maccabi T-A's a little bit higher in the standings. Iverson has a very solid season. In 3 games in Euroleague he scored 11.0ppg.
Other top performing players last week: 4. Johannes Voigtmann (210-C-92) of Baskonia - 18 points and 11 rebounds 5. Artsiom Parakhouski (211-C-87) of Unics - 17 points and 7 rebounds 6. Nick Calathes (198-PG-89) of Panathinaikos - 13 points, 11 rebounds and 9 assists 7. Justin Dentmon (183-PG-85) of Galatasaray - 22 points and 4 assists 8. Ekpe Udoh (208-F/C-87) of Fenerbahce - 14 points and 8 rebounds 9. Sonny Weems (198-G/F-86) of Maccabi T-A - 23 points and 5 rebounds 10. Luka Doncic (201-PG-99) of Real Madrid - 15 points, 3 rebounds and 4 assists
The Player of the week is chosen based on efficiency calculation, but also including game result, importance of the game, if played recorded double-double/triple-double, etc. The efficiency formula is a combination of various formulas used by different basketball organizations/leagues. We got involved many basketball scouts and journalists to assure it's accuracy. The formula: 1.5*PTS + 3* (REB+AST+ST+BL-TO) - 2*BSAG - 4*PF + 3*PFRV + 4* (2FGPM+3FGPM) + 1.5*FTM - 3* (2FGPA-2FGPM) - 3* (3FGPA-3FGPM) - (FTA-FTM)
Maccabi T-A - Galatasaray 98-92 Maccabi T-A used a home court advantage and beat the opponent from Istanbul 98-92. Galatasaray was ahead by 3 points at the halftime before a 54-45 second half run of Maccabi T-A. They dominated down low during the game scoring 48 of its points in the paint compared to Galatasaray's 28 and made 29-of-36 charity shots (80.6 percent) during the game. 27 personal fouls committed by Galatasaray helped opponents get some easy free throw opportunities. It was an... [read more]
Maccabi T-A used a home court advantage and beat the opponent from Istanbul 98-92. Galatasaray was ahead by 3 points at the halftime before a 54-45 second half run of Maccabi T-A. They dominated down low during the game scoring 48 of its points in the paint compared to Galatasaray's 28 and made 29-of-36 charity shots (80.6 percent) during the game. 27 personal fouls committed by Galatasaray helped opponents get some easy free throw opportunities. It was an exceptional evening for American swingman Sonny Weems (198-86, college: Arkansas) who led the winners and scored 23 points and 5 rebounds. Guinea-Bissau-American center Colton Iverson (212-89, college: Colorado St., agency: Pensack Sports) accounted for 17 points and 5 rebounds for the winning side. Serbian forward Vladimir Micov (201-85, agency: BeoBasket) came up with 18 points and 6 rebounds and American point guard Justin Dentmon (183-85, college: Washington) added 22 points and 4 assists respectively for Galatasaray in the defeat. Both teams had four players each who scored in double figures. Both coaches allowed to play bench players saving starting five for next games. Maccabi T-A's next round opponent will be Zalgiris (#13) in Kaunas. Galatasaray will play at home against Fenerbahce where they are definitely not considered as a favorite in this game either. Top scorers: Galatasaray: J.Dentmon 22+1reb+4ast, V.Micov 18+6reb+3ast, S.Guler 15+3reb+3ast, D.Thompson 10+2reb+2ast, A.Tyus 7+4reb, B.Schilb 6+5reb+6ast Maccabi T-A: S.Weems 23+5reb+1ast, C.Iverson 17+5reb+1ast, D.Smith 17+3reb, A.Goudelock 12+2reb+3ast, M.Zirbes 10+2reb, D.Seeley 7+1reb+6ast
The game with biggest result difference took place in Istanbul. Local Fenerbahce (3-0) beat Lithuania Zalgiris (1-2) 82-68. The game without a history. Fenerbahce led from the first minutes and controlled entire game increasing their lead in each quarter. They made 21-of-22 charity shots (95.5 percent) during the game. Fenerbahce players were unselfish on offense dishing 22 assists. 25 personal fouls committed by Zalgiris helped opponents get some easy free throw opportunities. It was a quality performance for Nigeria power forward Ekpe Udoh (208-87, college: Baylor) who led the winners and scored 14 points and 8 rebounds. Greek guard Konstantinos Sloukas (197-90) accounted for 8 points and 11 assists for the winning side. French guard Leo Westermann (197-92, agency: BeoBasket) came up with 15 points and 4 assists and Australia power forward Brock Motum (208-90, college: Washington St.) added 14 points respectively for Zalgiris in the defeat. Both coaches allowed to play bench players saving starting five for next games. Fenerbahce's next round opponent will be Galatasaray (#16) in Istanbul which should be an easy win for them. Zalgiris will play at home against Maccabi T-A (#12) and it may be a tough game between close rivals. Top scorers: Zalgiris: L.Westermann 15+2reb+4ast, B.Motum 14+3reb, A.Milaknis 10+1reb, P.Jankunas 8+4reb+1ast, A.Kavaliauskas 7+2reb+1ast, K.Pangos 5+2reb+2ast Fenerbahce: J.Vesely 14+3reb+1ast, E.Udoh 14+8reb+1ast, P.Antic 11+1reb, B.Bogdanovic 10+1reb+5ast, L.Datome 8+4reb+1ast, K.Sloukas 8+1reb+11ast
A very close game took place in Bamberg between Greek Panathinaikos and German Brose Baskets. Panathinaikos (2-1) got a very close victory on the road over Brose Baskets (1-2). Panathinaikos managed to escape with a 1-point win 84-83 on Wednesday evening. Brose Baskets were trailing by 5 points at halftime but managed to get 1-point lead after three quarters before a 22-20 charge of Panathinaikos, which allowed them to win the game. They made 16-of-19 free shots (84.2 percent) during the game. It was a great evening for American-Greek point guard Nick Calathes (198-89, college: Florida) who led his team to a victory with a double-double by scoring 13 points, 11 rebounds and 9 assists. American-Guinea-Bissau guard K.C. Rivers (196-87, college: Clemson) helped adding 18 points. The best for the losing side was Greek guard Nikolaos Zisis (197-83) with 13 points and 6 assists and Italian Nicolo Melli (205-91) scored 17 points. Both teams had four players each who scored in double figures. Brose Baskets' coach rotated ten players in this game, but that didn't help. Panathinaikos will meet at home Crvena Zvezda (#7) in the next round. Brose Baskets will play against FC Barcelona and it may be a tough game between close rivals. Top scorers: Brose Bask.: N.Melli 17+2reb+1ast, J.Strelnieks 16+2reb, N.Zisis 13+4reb+6ast, D.Miller 12+3reb+2ast, F.Causeur 7+1reb+2ast, M.Lo 6+1reb Panathinaikos: K.Rivers 18+1reb+2ast, J.Feldeine 16+1reb+3ast, N.Calathes 13+11reb+9ast, J.Gist 10+5reb+2ast, I.Bourousis 9+3reb, C.Singleton 9+3reb+2ast
Crvena Zvezda used a home court advantage and defeated the opponent from Barcelona 76-65. It looked good early as FC Barcelona took a 7-point lead at the end of first quarter. But then Crvena Zvezda had a 31-15 second period charge getting the lead and FC Barcelona was not able to take back game control losing it eventually 65-76. Crvena Zvezda forced 19 FC Barcelona turnovers. Their players were unselfish on offense dishing 28 assists. It was an exceptional evening for Marko Guduric (196-95) who led the winners and scored 21 points and 5 assists. Forward Marko Simonovic (201-86, agency: BeoBasket) accounted for 13 points and 5 rebounds for the winning side. Crvena Zvezda's coach allowed to play the deep bench players saving starting five for next games. Victor Claver (206-88) came up with a double-double by scoring 12 points and 10 rebounds and American-Spanish point guard Brad Oleson (190-83, college: Alaska-Fairb., agency: Duran International) added 15 points and 5 assists respectively for FC Barcelona in the defeat. Crvena Zvezda's next round opponent will be Panathinaikos (#6) in Athens. FC Barcelona will play at home against Brose Baskets (#11) and it may be a tough game between close rivals. Top scorers: FC Barcelona: B.Oleson 15+2reb+5ast, V.Claver 12+10reb+1ast, T.Rice 9+5ast, P.Ribas 9+1reb+1ast, A.Tomic 8+5reb+1ast, A.Vezenkov 4+6reb+3ast Crvena Zvezda: M.Guduric 21+4reb+5ast, M.Simonovic 13+5reb+1ast, M.Bjelica 12+3reb+4ast, B.Lazic 9+1reb+1ast, C.Jenkins 8+1reb+7ast, O.Kuzmic 6+5reb+2ast
Real Madrid (2-1) recorded a loss at the home court. Hosts were defeated by Baskonia (2-1) 91-87. The guests started the game with a very strong first quarter 32-19. But Real Madrid won second period 24-22. However it was not enough to take a lead and get a victory that evening. It was a good game for German center Johannes Voigtmann (210-92) who led his team to a victory with a double-double by scoring 18 points and 11 rebounds. Slovenia guard Jaka Blazic (196-90) contributed with 21 points for the winners. American power forward Anthony Randolph (211-89, college: LSU) answered with 9 points and 13 rebounds and Slovenia point guard Luka Doncic (201-99) added 15 points and 4 assists in the effort for Real Madrid. Five Baskonia and four Real Madrid players scored in double figures. Both coaches tested many bench players in such tough game. Baskonia will play against Olympiacos (#8) in Athens in the next round which should be theoretically an easy game. Real Madrid will play on the road against Armani Milano (#9) and hopes to get back on the winning track. Top scorers: Real Madrid: G.Ayon 16+2reb, L.Doncic 15+3reb+4ast, S.Llull 13+2reb+3ast, F.Reyes 11+3reb, J.Carroll 11+2reb, O.Hunter 9+4reb+1ast Baskonia: J.Blazic 21+4reb+2ast, J.Voigtmann 18+11reb+1ast, T.Shengelia 14+3reb, A.Hanga 12+4reb, S.Larkin 11+4reb+5ast, J.Akognon 5+2reb+2ast
Very expected game in Istanbul where Turkish Anadolu Efes (0-3) were defeated by Russia CSKA (3-0) 93-87. The guests took control from the first minutes by winning first half. But Anadolu Efes won third quarter 26-20. However it was not enough to take a lead and get a victory that evening. CSKA made 26-of-29 charity shots (89.7 percent) during the game, while Anadolu Efes only scored three points from the stripe. CSKA players were unselfish on offense dishing 23 assists. 24 personal fouls committed by Anadolu Efes helped opponents get some easy free throw opportunities. It was an exceptional evening for French Nando De Colo (196-87) who led the winners and scored 26 points and 6 assists. Serbian point guard Milos Teodosic (195-87) accounted for 15 points and 8 assists for the winning side. Four CSKA players scored in double figures. American forward Derrick Brown (203-87, college: Xavier) came up with 14 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists and the other American import forward DeShaun Thomas (201-91, college: Ohio St.) added 16 points respectively for Anadolu Efes in the defeat. Both coaches allowed to play bench players saving starting five for next games. CSKA's next round opponent will be Unics Kazan (#15) at home which should be an easy win for them. Anadolu Efes' supporters look forward to an exciting derby game next round, where their team will travel locally in Istanbul to the arena Darussafaka. Top scorers: Anadolu Efes: D.Thomas 16+2reb, D.Brown 14+5reb+4ast, B.Cotton 12+3reb+2ast, B.Dunston 9+5reb+2ast, T.Heurtel 7+7ast, A.Omic 7+4reb CSKA: N.De Colo 26+4reb+6ast, M.Teodosic 15+3reb+8ast, C.Higgins 13+3reb, J.Ayres 10+4reb, A.Vorontsevich 8+2reb, V.Khryapa 6+4reb
Host Greek Olympiacos (2-1) beat Italian Armani Milano (2-1) 91-81 on Tuesday evening. The game was mostly controlled by Olympiacos. Armani Milano managed to win second period 22-21. But it was not enough to take a lead and get a victory that evening. Olympiacos made 22-of-28 free shots (78.6 percent) during the game. 24 personal fouls committed by Armani Milano helped opponents get some easy free throw opportunities. The best player for the winners was Vassilis Spanoulis (193-82, agency: BeoBasket) who scored 16 points and 4 assists. Canadian center Khem Birch (208-92, college: UNLV) chipped in 12 points and 6 rebounds. At the other side the best for losing team was Serbian center Miroslav Raduljica (213-88) who recorded 14 points and 8 rebounds and Croatia swingman Krunoslav Simon (197-85) added 16 points respectively. Four Armani Milano players scored in double figures. Both coaches used bench players which allowed the starters a little rest for the next games. Armani Milano will play next round against strong Real Madrid trying to make it back to the top of the standings. Olympiacos will try to continue on its current victory against Baskonia in Vitoria. Top scorers: EA7 Armani: K.Simon 16+1reb+2ast, M.Raduljica 14+8reb+1ast, Z.Dragic 13+2reb, A.Gentile 12+2reb+4ast, R.Sanders 8+4reb, R.Hickman 6+1reb+4ast Olympiacos: V.Spanoulis 16+1reb+4ast, E.Green 16+1reb+1ast, K.Birch 12+6reb, M.Lojeski 10+1reb+3ast, D.Hackett 10+3reb+1ast, G.Printezis 9+7reb
Very predictable result when Turkish Darussafaka (2-1) beat on the road Russia Unics Kazan (0-3) 94-87. Unics Kazan was ahead by 1 point at the halftime before a 48-40 second half run of Darussafaka. Strangely Unics Kazan outrebounded Darussafaka 34-19 including 16 on the offensive glass. It was an exceptional evening for American guard Brad Wanamaker (193-89, college: Pittsburgh) who led the winners and scored 22 points and 7 assists. His fellow American import James Anderson (198-89, college: Oklahoma St.) accounted for 18 points and 6 rebounds for the winning side. American Keith Langford (193-83, college: Kansas) came up with 22 points and 4 assists and Spanish point guard Joaquin Colom (188-88, college: Forca Lleida, agency: Interperformances) added 16 points and 8 rebounds respectively for Unics Kazan in the defeat. Four Darussafaka and five Unics Kazan players scored in double figures. Both coaches allowed to play bench players saving starting five for next games. Darussafaka's next round opponent will be Anadolu Efes (#14) in Istanbul which should be an easy win for them. Unics Kazan will play on the road against CSKA in Moscow and hopes to get finally their first victory. Top scorers: Unics: K.Langford 22+4reb+4ast, A.Parakhouski 17+7reb, J.Colom 16+8reb+3ast, A.Ponkrashov 16+2reb+3ast, K.Kaimakoglou 11+6reb+3ast, L.Williams 2+2reb Darussafaka: B.Wanamaker 22+2reb+7ast, J.Anderson 18+6reb, S.Wilbekin 13+1ast, B.Batuk 12+1reb+2ast, O.Savas 10+1ast, M.Slaughter 8+4reb
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