With Round 7 now concluded, a number of teams are now looking forward to the Top 16 and there a couple of exciting games with late drama on Friday night.
Nizhny Novgorod v Zalgiris Kaunas 55-61
You may look at the score line and assume it was a straightforward win for Kaunas, but this was an exciting match that hinged on a massive turnaround from the away team. In a very intense game, Kaunas bounced back from being 17 points behind to move the club on to a 4-3 record. Kaunas have now defeated Novgorod two times this campaign, leaving Nizhnu with a 3-4 record.
James Anderson was the top man for the winners, grabbing 18 points but both Robertas Javtokas and Paulius Jankunas managed to score 9 points each while grabbing 11 rebounds. For Nizhny, the top man was Taylor Rochestie, who managed to pick up 15 points in the match. Tarence Kinsey served up 11 points while Art Parakhouski offered up 13 rebounds. Nizhny raced away into a strong lead near the start of the game, leading 37-20 close to half-time but Andersen upped the tempo and by half-time, there were only four points in the game. In the second half, Kaunas powered on to clinch a convincing win.
Anadolu Efes Istanbul v Dinamo Banco Di Sardegna Sassari 85-62
Efes knew that a win would put them level with Real Madrid at the top of Group A and Dario Saric was the top man in their 85-62 win. Saric provided 18 points and also offered up 11 rebounds in moving his team to a 5-2 record while Sassari dropped to 1-6 record. Dinamo now sit at the bottom of the group and they face an uphill battle to make it through to the Top 16. Efes storming away in the first quarter with Saric and Matt Jenning showing their prowess from distance to bag back to back three point efforts. Sassari attempted a comeback before half-time but there was always a comfortable gap for the home team. Milko Bjelica helped himself to 16 points from the bench and Cedi Osman also served up 12 points. Sassari were boosted by Rakin Sanders, who grabbed 11 points while Shane Lawal offered up 10 points and 15 rebounds. Miroslav Todic and David Logan both grabbed 10 points for the losing side.
Cedevita Zagreb v Limoges CSP 102-83
When your shooting is of a high standard and you have dominant players on the court, you are going to win more games than you will lose. So it proved for Zagreb who clinched a 102-83 win against Limoges CSP on Friday, keeping alive the home team’s hopes of making the Top 16. Miro Bilan and Fran Pilepic were both in great form as the home team moved to a 2-5 record while Limoges slipped to a 1-6 record. This was the fifth defeat that Limoges have suffered in a row and they now sit at the bottom of Group B.
There were a couple of career highs for Cedevita in the game. Bilan grabbed 24 points, a career high for him, and 8 rebounds while Pilepic offered up 21 points, a career high for him. Nemanja Gordic was in good form, offering 7 assists and 11 points while Karlo Zganec provided 10 rebounds and 9 points. Nobel Boungou-Colo provided 18 points for Limoges while Ramel Curry provided 15 points.
Panathinaikos v FC Bayern Munich 87-72
The home win for the Greek side was more than enough to book Panathinaikos a place into the Top 16. The win placed them on to a 5-2 record and after just 7 games in Group C, three teams are already assured of making profess into the tournament. Bayern Munich now have a 1-6 record and in Round 8, there is a massive match between Bayern and Milan to see who remains in contention to make it through from the group.
Panathinaikos were without Esteban Batista but they didn’t miss his points as AJ Slaughter grabbed 17 points and Loukas Mavrokefalidis picked up 16 points. Other key players for Panathinaikos included Antonis Fotsis with 14 points, Vlantimir Giankovits with 13 points and Nikos Pappas grabbed 10 points. There was a tie in the second quarter at 31-31 but the home side saw out the half with a 13-2 run and never looked back. Bo McCalebb was important for Bayern, grabbing 15 points while Robin Benzing served up 14 points.
FC Barcelona v EA7 Emporio Armani Milan 84-80
They eventually clinched a 7-0 record but FC Barcelona had to battle back from a 14 point deficit to remain on their winning win. Ante Tomic served up 18 points while Mario Hezona picked up 13 points. Barcelona were also boosted by Alex Abrines grabbing 11 points, Brad Oleson picking up 10 points and Justin Doellman offering 9 rebounds and 6 points.
The game was close to the end and in the last 2:46 minutes, the lead changed hands 7 times. Barcelona managed to grab the last 7 points of the game, ensuring they got another big win. Milan slumped to a 2-5 record even though Daniel Hackett picked up 21 points, Samardo Samuels offering up 16 points and MarShon Brooks provided 11 points.
Valencia Basket v Galatasaray Liv Hospital Istanbul 78-71
This crucial home win for the Spanish side reignited their chance of making it through to the Top 16, moving Valencia on to a 2-5 record while Galatasaray dropped down to a 3-4 record. Crucially, Galatasaray managed to reign in the manner of defeat so as to ensure that Valencia don’t hold the advantage in the head to head record.
Kresimir Loncar grabbed 15 points for the home team while Luke Harangody offered up 13 points, Vladimir Lucic provided 11 points and Bojan Dubljevic provided 10 points. Galatasaray were boosted by Pietro Aradori who offered 20 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists while Zoran Erceg provided 19 points and Carlos Arroyo provided 10 points.