This was a game that live up to its pre-match hype and billing. In the end, the home side prevailed to book their place into the Final Four in Madrid and Barcelona have been left feeling disappointed with the fact that they will not be able to rain on the parade of their bitter domestic rivals. The whole world knows about the battles between Barcelona and Real Madrid, and this even extends to the basketball world. There will be plenty of basketball fans around the world who are gutted that they won’t be locking horns this summer. Mind you, the Real Madrid fans won’t mind too much because they get to laugh at their old rivals over the next few weeks before the Final Four event even begins!
Olympiacos Piraeus 71 – FC Barcelona 68
As the score line suggests, this was another nail-biting and tense game between these sides and the pattern of the scoring and gameplay tells you how close the game was. In the fourth quarter, there were 9 changes of the lead and there were also 6 ties, which meant that no one could be sure of how the game was going to pan out until the buzzer rolled around. With that, Georgios Printezis was the main man as he pulled off a three point shot right on the buzzer that separated the two teams and decided the best of five series. Olympiacos have done amazingly well against Barcelona, losing the opening game in Catalonia, winning the next game away from home and then following it up with two home wins. Olympiacos were the only team without home-court advantage to make their way to the Final Four, which means that they can be immensely proud of.
Big name players make the difference
Printezis is already assured of his legendary status at the club down to the fact that he grabbed the winning basket that won the Euroleague Championship of 2012, but his winning shot and 14 points in this game will only further cement the relationship he has with the fans of the club. Vassilis Spanouilis was also in top form, offering 17 points and 5 assists while Vangelis Mantzaris served up 11 points in the game.
Ante Tomic was a main player for the Catalan club, grabbing 13 points, Tomas Satoransky served up 12 points and Alex Abrines offered 11 points for Barcelona who now have to continue their season without any further Euroleague action.
With this being an extremely close series, Barcelona will be feeling extremely let down at the way that their Euroleague season panned out, but it is not as if they were bad over the course of the series. There were a number of close games in the series and but for a few last second shots, things could have panned out extremely differently for the Catalan team. As it is, they will just have to put up with the fact that they will not be involved at the business end of the Euroleague campaign.