Euroleague - I Feel DevotionYou may be looking forward to the festive period but for Euroleague players, coaches and fans; the first big event in their festive calendar comes next week when the last round of group games are played out. A good number of teams have already booked their place in the Top 16 but there will be a couple of issues left to be decided next week, so you should find that There are more than enough reasons to keep in touch with the campaign over the next week, but make sure you catch up with what unfolded this week.

Unics Kazan v Zalgiris Kaunas 73-60

A great second half showing was all that Kazan needed to pull away from Kaunas and the team increased their chances of making it through to the Top 16. Unics moved on to a 5-4 record while Kaunas slipped to a 4-5 record at the same time. While Unics were losing at half-time, narrowly by a score of 34-36, they were boosted by D’Or Fischer and Keith Langford who both grabbed 16 points each. James Anderson was the main man for Zalgiris with 12 points while Lukas Lekavicius offered up 10 points in the loss.

Anadolu Efes Istanbul v Nizhny Novgorod 61-65

This great way win ensured that Novgorod remain in the hunt for a Top 16 place, and it ensures that Unics Kazan still have some work to do to book their place in the knock-out round. Nizhny moved up to a 4-5 record and they welcome Unica Kazan next week with beat teams knowing that a win is vital if they are looking to participate in the knock out stages. Efes slipped to a 6-3 record, but they know that their passage is safe.

It was a great win for Novogorod but the nature of the win becomes even more important when you take on board the fact that Taylor Rochestie was unavailable. Dimitriy Khvostov and Trey Thompkins both grabbed 14 points with Thompkins also adding 8 rebounds in the course of the match. Evgeny Baburin managed to provide 13 points and Tarence Kinsey provided 10 points. Efes were boosted by 15 points and 7 rebounds from Stephane Lasme while Dario Saric grabbed 11 points and 7 rebounds. Saric received the November MVP award before the game.

Dinamo Banco Di Sardegna Sassari v Real Madrid 58-83

The Spanish giants look on course to top Group A after this away win which sees them move on to a 7-1 record, while Dinamo dropped down to a 1-8 record, and the home team know that they will definitely finish sixth in Group A. Felipe Reyes was the leading player for Real with 14 points and 6 rebounds with Sergio Llull offering up 12 points for the winners, and Jaycee Carroll provided 11 points. Edgar Sosa offered 18 points and 6 assists for the home team who have endured a tough time in the Euroleague this campaign.

Limoges CSP v Alba Berlin 65-71

A brilliant win on the road ensured that Alba have qualified to the Top 16, with the 4-5 record being better than what their defeated opponents or Cedevita Zagreb can muster. The German side led from early on and looked in control for the majority of the game, although there was a brief period in the third quarter when the match was very much up for grabs. At this point, Jamel McLean stepped and was instrumental in a 0-9 run for Berlin. McLean helped himself to 18 points, 4 assists and 7 rebounds, all of which ensured that Alba are in the knock-out round. Vojdan Stojanovski provided 13 points while Alex Renfroe offered 8 points and 6 assists. The host side were boosted by Jamar Smith, with 15 points, and Adrien Moerman with 10 points, but there wasn’t much joy or consolation for the home side to take from this game.

Laboral Kutxa Vitoria v Valencia Basket 93-89

Vitoria grabbed a Top 16 spot with this home win which moves them on to a 5-4 record while ensuring that Valencia, with a 2-7 record, are out of the running for a Top 16 season, having to settle for a Eurocup Last 32 place instead. Valencia have held the upper hand against Vitoria of late but this was a strong home performance, with Fabien Causuer grabbing 21 points. He was helped by Toko Shengelia grabbing 15 points and Ferdnando San Emeterio picking up 13 points. Valencia were led by Nemanja Nedovic grabbing 17 points while Bojan Dubljevic grabbed 16 points, Pau Ribas provided 14 points, Guillen Vives served up 13 points and Romain Sato offered up 11 points.

Olympiacos Piraeus v Crevna Zvezda Telekom Belgrade 64-59

This was a big game with an electric final minute which allowed the home team to clinch top spot in Group D. Olympiacos moved to an 8-1 record while Zvezda dropped to a 5-4 record, but they do still sit in second place. Vasilis Spanoulis offered up 15 points for the winners while Oliver Lafayette provided 11 points while Kostas Sloukas provided 9 points and 5 assists. Boban Marjanovic was dangerous for Zvedza with 17 points and 13 rebounds while Luka Mitrovic provided 11 points and Nikola Kalinic offered 10 points. The team from Belgrade now face Laboral Kutxa Vitoria in Belgrade in Round 10 with second place in the group on the line.