2007-08Top 16Round 3
February 27, 2008 CET: 20:45

Team Stats

Ave.   Ave.
78.3 Points 79.2
32.8 Rebounds 32.3
9.3 O. Rebounds 8.8
23.6 D. Rebounds 23.5
13.8 Assists 13.9
8.3 Steals 7.6
3.5 Blocks 2.6
14.5 Turnovers 9.9
54.0 % 2PT 53.3 %
38.3 % 3PT 39.1 %
76.1 % FT 75.2 %
89.7 Index 92.0

Player Stats

Ave.   Ave.
14.8 / HAISLIP, MARCUS Points 14.3 / Andersen
5.5 / Ndong Rebounds 6.3 / Andersen
2.1 / Ndong OR 2.4 / Goree
3.5 / HAISLIP, MARCUS DR 4.6 / Andersen
2.9 / Welsch Assists 3.7 / Papaloukas
1.7 / Welsch Steals 1.2 / Langdon
1.5 / Ndong Blocks 1.1 / Goree
2.1 / Welsch Turnovers 1.6 / Papaloukas
70.5 % / Santiago 2PT 66.7 % / Vorontsevich
51.0 % / Gabriel 3PT 56.8 % / Andersen
91.4 % / Kus FT 91.5 % / Andersen
12.9 / Cabezas Index 16.8 / Andersen


Ave.   Ave.
0-0 Final Four 0-0
0-0 Playoffs 0-0
0-2 Top 16 2-0
10-4 Regular Season 12-2
10-6 Overall 14-2


Crew Chief

The Take

A pivotal game in Group G takes place on Wednesday when Unicaja hosts undefeated CSKA Moscow at the Martin Carpena Arena in Malaga, Spain. The game is a rematch of a semifinal battle from the 2007 Final Four in Athens, which CSKA won 62-50 after entering the fourth quarter tied. However now the two teams sit in different situations. Unicaja started the Top 16 with back-to-back road losses and mounting injuries – homegrown backcourt talents Carlos Cabezas and captain Berni Rodriguez are both sidelined. Still coming home for the first time gives head coach Sergio Scariolo’s men hope that it’s not too late to turn things around. After all, Unicaja is undefeated at home this season and has won 15 straight Euroleague games in Malaga dating back to December 2006. Meanwhile CSKA started the Top 16 with home wins over Lottomatica Roma and AXA FC Barcelona to snatch first place in the group, but now ventures on the road for the first time. The Russian champs have now won five in a row overall and eight straight in the Top 16 dating back to 2006. A win in Malaga would go a long way towards helping head coach Ettore Messina’s men advance to the Quarterfinal Playoffs as they seek a record sixth consecutive trip to the Final Four. CSKA should be on somewhat of an emotional high as All-Euroleague forward Matjaz Smodis could see Euroleague action for the first time since the third game of the season. Smodis already scored 17 in his return to action in the Russian League over the weekend. He will be a big help as the CSKA big men David Andersen, Tomas Van den Spigel and Marcus Goree look for a way to stop Unicaja’s formidable frontline of Daniel Santiago, Boniface NDong and Marcus Haislip. Unicaja will rely more on guards Davor Kus, Bojan Popovic and Terrel Castle in hoping to limit the likes of J.R. Holden and Theo Papaloukas, but the key for the hosts could be how swingmen Jiri Welsch and Melvin Sanders and small forward Carlos Jimenez fare against their star counterparts, Ramunas Siskauskas and Trajan Langdon. CSKA, which has a 9-2 all-time record against Unicaja, may have a psychological advantage as well after shutting down Welsch (2 points, 1 assist in 15 minutes) at the Final Four last season. If the visitors’ defense can again take away such an important backcourt option, they will have a major advantage. However with their backs to the wall, expect nothing less than 100% effort as Unicaja looks to return to the chase for a Quarterfinal Playoffs spot in what should be a gritty and action-packed game.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Quotes Head Coaches

"I think it's not worth it to talk about the qualities of our rival or the relevance of this game, and most of all stopping to cry about the accidents we have had lately. What we have to do is use that frustration in competitive rage, raise our heads and fight until the end with focus and tranquility. Our crowd will also have a key role and we know we will have their help once more."


"The game of Wednesday can be the toughest this year because we will be facing a strong rival and we have lost the first two games in the Top 16. Now we are at a point in which we have to win our three home games. We have not lost at home this year and we have to maintain that. I think that the help of our fans can be decisive. I cannot highlight one single player from CSKA, they are a complete team from the first to the last player. It is a complicated game and we have to get ready for all their players and give it all to win."
Daniel Santiago - Unicaja Unicaja climbed back to the fight for a spot in the Quarterfinal Playoffs with a 72-67 win over CSKA Moscow on Wednesday at the Martin Carpena Arena in Malaga, Spain. Daniel Santiago scored 20 points as Unicaja won its 16th consecutive Euroleague game in Malaga and avenged a defeat to CSKA in the semifinals of the 2007 Final Four in Athens. The win was Unicaja’s first of the Top 16, but also brought it within one win of first place. Meanwhile CSKA, which dropped to 2-1 in Group G, saw its five-game winning streak snapped and lost for the first time in the Top 16 since 2006. Unicaja made its move early, hitting 5 first period three-pointer to take the lead for good. Santiago dominated inside as the lead reached double figures early in the second period on a Davor Kus triple. But Ramunas Siskauskas caught fire in time to close the gap to 39-33 at halftime. Marcus Haislip teamed up with Santiago to wear down the CSKA frontline in the second half as the duo scored all the points in a 9-0 run giving Unicaja a 54-35 lead. But Theo Papaloukas wouldn’t let his team quit. CSKA rallied back to 10 late in the third quarter. Still CSKA couldn’t get any closer than 7 as Unicaja stood tall at both ends in the final period. Just as it seemed CSKA had accepted defeat, J.R. Holden drilled a three-pointer that cut the lead to 72-66 with a minute to play. But the Russian champs missed their last 4 field goal attempts and Papaloukas only made 1 from the line, allowing Unicaja to record the win. Haislip added 10 points and Jiri Welsch finished with 9 points and 8 rebounds for Unicaja. Siskauskas paced CSKA with 12, Trajan Langdon scored 11 and Papaloukas and Holden netted 10 each. Papaloukas also dished 5 assists in defeat.

Unicaja controlled the opening tip and looked to make a statement with an attempted alley-oop to Haislip. Even though it didn’t work, he grabbed the rebound, kicked it out and eventually wound up drilling a three-pointer to open up the scoring. On the very next Unicaja possession, Welsch hit from downtown as the hosts took control. Marcus Goree finally got CSKA on the board. After the first two long balls, Unicaja went scoreless for three minutes during which Goree tied the score at 6-6. Terrel Castle then struck from downtown, but David Andersen’s basket-plus-foul kept things even. Carlos Jimenez was the next to triple for the hosts and Andersen matched again, this time from beyond the arc. Over seven minutes passed before Santiago scored Unicaja’s first two-point basket of the night. He would add a tip-in and later 2 free throws as the hosts went up 4. Langdon hit a jumper for CSKA, but Berni Rodriguez dilled his team’s fifth three-pointer of the period to settle the score a 21-16 after 10 minutes.

Trajan Langdon - CSKA MoscowSantiago picked up where he left off with a hook and then a two-handed slam to start the second period, leading to a CSKA timeout. Langdon banked in a basket off an inbounds play for his team’s first points of the period. As Santiago cooled down with a few misses and a turnover, Kus stepped up with a triple to give Unicaja its first double-digit lead, 28-18. Langdon remained CSKA's only source of points, adding a three-pointer. At the other end, German Gabriel converted a three-point play and soon after a Castle steal and break away turned into an unsportsmanlike foul on Viktor Khryapa who tried to catch him from behind. The resulting free throws from Castle and then Gabriel boosted the lead to 37-23. Andersen responded from downtown, making him the first CSKA player other than Langdon to score in the period. Soon Siskauskas got going and CSKA started to trim the gap. Goree capped a 2-10 run with a bucket in the paint to make it 39-33 at halftime.

After Goree missed inside for CSKA, Castle netted a mid-range jumper to start the second-half scoring. Santiago soon restored a 10-point lead from the line, only to see Holden pull up for a quick hoop at the other end. But Santiago remained unstoppable and after a tip-in and more free throws, the lead was up to 47-35. Haislip scored from the blocks and then Santiago powered his way through two CSKA defenders to give the hosts their biggest lead yet… until Haislip drilled a triple that capped a 9-0 run and made it 54-35. A basket by Tomas Van den Spiegel and a Papaloukas triple showed signs of life from the visitors. Van den Spiegel added another score in the paint and Papaloukas netted 2 from the line as the visitors stormed back. Siskauskas added a free throw to cap a 2-11 run before Welsch’s drive ended the period with the hosts ahead 58-46.

Davor Kus - UnicajaVan den Spiegel, playing with four fouls, remained aggressive, drawing fouls on the offensive glass and netting 4 free throws. NDong hit a foul-line jumper and Haislip drove on Goree for a basket-plus-foul to restore a promising Unicaja lead, 63-50. Holden came right back with a triple, and after Kus's free throws, added another clutch basket. Then Langdon canned a long jumper to make it 65-57. Van den Spiegel committed a louse-ball foul after dropping a pass in the paint and needed to take a seat. However Papaloukas remained in charge, going coast to coast to cut the gap to 7. Santiago's 20th point extended the lead and after Papaloukas only made one from the line, Welsch drew a foul from Papaloukas and made 2 to give Unicaja a 10-point lead again with 2:17 remaining. CSKA seemed ready to accept the defeat as it played long and thoughtful attacks as if it were more concerned with minimizing the damage for a potential tiebreaker than gambling on a win. But when a Holden three made it 72-66 with a minute to go, that changed. Papaloukas would get it to 5 with 27.1 seconds to go, but no closer as Unicaja ran out the clock to earn the win.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Attendance: 9700
By Quarter1234
CSKA Moscow16171321
End of Quarter1234
CSKA Moscow16334667
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 POPOVIC, BOJAN 11:43 3 0/2 0/2 3/4   1 1   1       3 3  
5 RODRIGUEZ, BERNI 27:09 5 1/2 1/5   2 1 3 3 2 1     4 1 4
7 KUS, DAVOR 12:28 7 1/1 1/3 2/2           1     1 1 4
9 WELSCH, JIRI 29:21 9 2/8 1/2 2/4 1 7 8 3 1 3   1 1 3 10
12 NDONG, BONIFACE 14:20 4 2/4       3 3     2 2   2   3
13 GABRIEL, GERMAN 10:00 4 1/1 0/1 2/3   1 1           1 2 4
16 PRESTES, PAULO DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
20 JIMENEZ, CARLOS 18:08 3 0/1 1/1     3 3 1   1     3 1 3
24 HAISLIP, MARCUS 26:30 11 2/5 2/3 1/1 2 2 4 1   1     3 1 9
25 SANTIAGO, DANIEL 22:19 20 7/12   6/6 3 3 6   2 3     1 7 26
30 CASTLE, TERREL 28:02 6 1/3 1/1 1/2 1 1 2   2 1     1 2 7
34 SANDERS, MELVIN DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Team             1 1   2           3
Totals 200:00 72 17/39 7/18 17/22 9 23 32 8 10 13 2 1 20 21 73
        43.6% 38.9% 77.3%
Min: Minutes played; Pts: Points; 2FG M-A: 2-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); 3FG M-A: 3-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); FT M-A: Free Throws (Made-Attempted); Rebounds: O (Offensive), D (Defensive), T (Total); As: Assists; St: Steals; To: Turnovers; Bl: Blocks (Fv: In Favor / Ag: Against); Fouls: Cm (Commited), Rv (Received); PIR: Performance Index Rating
CSKA Moscow
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 PAPALOUKAS, THEODOROS 25:19 10 2/5 1/3 3/5 2 3 5 5 1 3     3 7 15
6 ZISIS, NIKOS 4:52                   1         -1
7 KASHIROV, ANATOLY DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
9 SISKAUSKAS, RAMUNAS 26:57 12 4/5 0/3 4/6 2 2 4   1 3     1 4 11
10 HOLDEN, J.R. 36:15 10 2/4 2/6     1 1 3 1       1   8
11 PASHUTIN, ZAKHAR DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
13 ANDERSEN, DAVID 21:14 9 1/1 2/4 1/3   5 5     2     4 2 6
15 ZABELIN, ARTEM DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
21 LANGDON, TRAJAN 33:07 11 4/7 1/1   1 2 3 1 2 1     1 3 15
22 GOREE, MARCUS 28:06 7 3/6 0/2 1/4 2 7 9   1 1 1   3 2 8
24 VAN DEN SPIEGEL, TOMAS 12:13 8 2/5   4/4 3 1 4     2   2 5 2 2
31 KHRYAPA, VICTOR 11:57   0/2 0/2     1 1     1     3   -7
Team           1 4 5     1         4
Totals 200:00 67 18/35 6/21 13/22 11 26 37 9 6 15 1 2 21 20 61
        51.4% 28.6% 59.1%

Head Coaches

"I am happy for our fans, as they deserve to enjoy the best basketball level. I don't remember to stay such a long time at this basketball level and at the same time, getting so good results. CSKA is a great opponent and we knew we could keep our chances to finish second if we won tonight. CSKA has good chances to win in Barcelona and Rome. At least we are not winless in this group anymore, we are now more confident and have improved our chances. We need to win our two home games and then try to face the CSKA game as as regular road game, being able to compete and why not, trying to win it. It is very probable that our last game against Lottomatica will be a do-or-die one. I would like Barcelona to beat Roma tomorrow."
CSKA Moscow
"Unicaja played a quality game and showed a lot of heart. They ran their offense through Daniel Santiago in the low post and it worked well, as we were not able to stop him tonight. We did not have a good game in defense and did not manage to find our rhythm in offense. I am sorry, but I have to say that I am happy with our five-point deficit, as it can be important in a game in which Unicaja played better than us."


"We have shown that we are able to compete against anyone. CSKA is a great team but we rarely made mistakes tonight. Each and every players did its job perfectly, just like our coach told us, and that is what helped us to win the game."
"Our win tonight is a very important win because it allows us to stay in the fight to reach the Quarterfinal Playoffs. Everything is possible if we keep playing the way we did tonight. I worked well tonight, missed some shots but above all, we won and that is what mattered."
"This is a very important win for us. We were slowed by our many injuries but we showed more character then them tonight. I hope we can keep playing this way from now on."
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