2007-08Regular SeasonRound 12
January 17, 2008 CET: 18:15

Team Stats

Ave.   Ave.
76.2 Points 80.8
25.5 Rebounds 29.5
6.6 O. Rebounds 7.8
18.8 D. Rebounds 21.7
9.0 Assists 18.3
9.9 Steals 11.1
1.3 Blocks 2.6
14.4 Turnovers 12.8
53.9 % 2PT 58.7 %
36.3 % 3PT 38.0 %
77.4 % FT 65.3 %
66.6 Index 90.6

Player Stats

Ave.   Ave.
16.6 / Warren Points 11.5 / FIZER, MARCUS
4.6 / HOSKIN, S. Rebounds 6.6 / Morris
1.4 / HOSKIN, S. OR 2.3 / Batista
3.4 / Warren DR 4.5 / Morris
2.1 / KELLEY, TRE Assists 4.1 / Halperin
1.5 / Warren Steals 1.3 / Batista
0.6 / Andric Blocks 1.6 / Morris
2.4 / AYUSO, L. Turnovers 2.3 / Bynum
75.8 % / Andric 2PT 73.3 % / Casspi
50.0 % / KELLEY, TRE 3PT 48.1 % / Halperin
92.6 % / HOSKIN, S. FT 100.0 % / Sharp
17.8 / Warren Index 15.1 / Morris


Ave.   Ave.
0-0 Final Four 0-0
0-0 Playoffs 0-0
0-0 Top 16 0-0
4-6 Regular Season 7-3
4-7 Overall 8-3


Crew Chief

The Take

A game with some pretty big Group B implications will take place on Thursday in the Croatian capital when Cibona Zagreb hosts Maccabi Elite Tel Aviv at the Drazen Petrovic Center. Cibona’s chances of catching Aris TT Bank for fifth place in the group and a spot in the Top 16 look slim, as it would need to win out while Aris finished 0-3. However at 4-7, the Croatian champs are in the thick of the battle for the best sixth-place finish, which would also bring with it a spot in the next round. And a win over Maccabi would be a big boost to those chances. Meanwhile the Israeli champs have impressed with back-to-back victories over Efes Pilsen and Unicaja to start the new Zvika Sherf era as head coach. Now at 8-3, the Israeli champs are once again contenders for the top spot in Group B. Tel Aviv held on for an 80-74 win over Cibona at home in November. Maccabi will welcome back All-Euroleague center Nikola Vujcic after a two-month injury layoff. Fittingly, Vujcic will make his return in his homeland. Vujcic will not be rushed back to the lineup, instead just playing a role at first n a deep Maccabi frontcourt that also features Marcus Fizer, the Euroleague’s leader in points per minutes, Esteban Batista, the Euroleague’s leader in offensive rebounds per minute, and Terence Morris, who is averaging 14.8 points, 8.5 rebounds and 1.7 blocks per game since Maccabi last faced Cibona. The hosts counter with Sam Hoskin, who caused Maccabi trouble with 15 points and 9 rebounds in Tel Aviv, Luksa Andric and Vedran Vukusic. Cibona’s top weapon this season has been swingman Chris Warren, who is averaging 28 points on 62.5% three-point shooting and 8 rebound sin his last two games. David Bluthenthal and Omri Casspi figure to try and slow down the Cibona star, while the four-man guard rotation of Vonteego Cummings, Yotam Halperin, Alex Garcia and Will Bynum take aim at Cibona’s Larry Ayuso, Tre Kelley and Vedran Princ. With injury sidelining veteran playmaker Damir Mulaomerovic, Kelley and Princ will need to be at their best tos teer the team in the right direction. For Maccabi, the inclusion of Bynum, who was granted special permission by the courts to leave Israel despite an ongoing legal investigation, in the roster is an added bonus that could make the difference. Maccabi’s depth is its biggest advantage, not to mention its stellar play under Sherf. The question of fouls could be what determines how this game will look. If Fizer, who scored 16 first-quarter points last week, and his teammates can get the Cibona big men in early foul trouble, Maccabi could have an easy time. However if Hoskin forces Fizer to the bench without the Maccabi big guy making any damage, Cibona will have a big boost, as it looks to stop a two-game home floor losing streak and to mount a Top 16 challenge.
Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Quotes Head Coaches

"The return of Damir Mulaomerovic is a big thing for us and it is up to us to see what we can get from him at the moment. We respect Maccabi, but it is also a great challenge for us because I think they currently play the best basketball in Europe. Their roster is really deep and it is hard to defend them. I think the most important thing in this game is will and motivation. With help of our fans we can win against any team in our arena."
Maccabi Elite
"Cibona is a team we cannot under estimate. There's a very long and good tradition of great and interesting games between Maccabi and Cibona. We know more or less their game style – they like to run and shoot from outside. I believe that in order to collect a road win in the Euroleague you must control the tempo, make minimum turnovers and play tough defense. Now we have Nikola back and Lior Eliyahu is also fit, so we had a good practice with everybody. Cibona's gym is a very difficult place to win at, but we're going there to gain another win."


"I think there is no need to emphasize the importance of this game for us. We still have a chance to go through to the Top 16 and that is our biggest motivation. They changed coaches and after he has taken over it seems that they started to play as a team. Also, Nikola Vujcic is coming back so it is going to even harder for us."
Maccabi Elite
"It takes time to develop a killing instinct. We've seen glimpses of it, but it has got to be more consistent. We need to try to have it as a habit and not something that happens here and there, and we're working on it. Cibona are going to pack the gym and they're playing for something. They have a good chance to make it to the Top 16, so it's going to be a tough game."
Will Bynum - Maccabi EliteMaccabi Elite Tel Aviv held on to defeat Cibona Zagreb 76-81 at the Drazen Petrovic Center in Croatian capital on Thursday to join a three-way tie for first place in Group B. The Israeli champs built a 20-point halftime lead after limiting Cibona to just 4 second-period points, but the hosts used a three-point shooting display highlighted by Tre Kelley to get back in the game. However a short Terence Morris jumper with 10.6 seconds remaining and Yotam Halperin free throws iced the win. It was Maccabi’s third straight win under new head coach Zvika Sherf as it improved to 9-3 in the standings. With the other group co-leaders, Lietuvos Rytas and Unicaja, set to face off next week, Maccabi’s path to one of the top spots in the group is now wide open. Meanwhile Cibona lost for the fifth time in six games to fall to 4-8 as its Top 16 hopes suffered a blow. Will Bynum led Maccabi with a season-high 21 points, Halperin added 13, Marcus Fizer and Esteban Batista had 12 apiece and Morris posted 11 points and 15 rebounds in 40 minutes on the floor. Sam Hoskin finished with a career-high 27 points plus 8 rebounds for Cibona, Kelley added 18, Chris Warren 12 and Luksa Andric scored 10 and grabbed 13 rebounds for the Croatian champs. Cibona looked strong in the opening minutes with Andric helping Hoskin out, took an 18-12 lead. But Sherf turned to his more defensive-minded second unit, featuring Bynum, Batista and Alex Garcia and outscored the hosts 6-32 in the next 12 minutes to take a 20-point halftime lead. But Cibona put on a three-point display in the third period, making 7 triples to get back in the game. Then Hoskin scored 7 in a 12-0 run that tied the score at 62-62. Kelley continued to dominate and eventually wrested the lead away from Maccabi, but it would be brief. The game went to the final seconds, but a big basket by Morris and a dropped pass by Andric in the closing seconds left the win with the visitors.

Maccabi controlled the opening tip and went straight inside to Fizer for the game’s first basket. Hoskin hit from outside to open the home team’s account. Hoskin then went inside to give Cibona the lead. David Bluthenthal scored on the offensive glass and then on the next trip from the line before a Fizer slam put Maccabi ahead. Hoskin sank a three-pointer – only his second of the seasons – and Vedran Princ scored in transition, but then Hoskin was whistled for his second foul, which had the effect of slowing down the game. Cibona turned to a zone defense, which BYnum punished by feeding Morris for a slam, but a Adric slam and a Warren tip-in made it 18-12. Batista sent Halperin for a fast break layup and Bynum beat the 24-second clock with a three-pointer to get back within 1, but Hoskin scored in the paint to end the first period with the hosts up 20-17.

Sam Hoskin - CibonaAfter a scoreless first minute to the period, Bynum made an acrobatic layup in transition and a minute later Halperin nailed a triple to restore Maccabi’s lead as Cibona head coach Ivan Sumara called timeout. Still the momentum remained with the visitors as Morris banked in a one-hander and Batista added a bucket in the paint to cap a 2-14 charge for a 20-26 lead. Hoskin scored from the line to end a five-minute Cibona drought, but Bynum immediately answered with a long jumper and Garcia drilled a three to make it 22-31. Franko Kastropil came in and corrected a Larry Ayuso miss, but the momentum remained yellow as Batista also scored on the offensive glass and then took a steal in for a slam and a 24-36 lead, causing another Cibona timeout. Then Bynum stripped Damir Mulaomerovic for an easy basket as the visitors gained even more confidence. Omri Casspi and Batista continue to score at will inside, while on the other end Maccabi polished off one of its best defensive quarters in recent history for a 24-44 halftime lead.

A Kelley steal led to a Warren free throw as the fans tried to will their team back, but Maccabi slowed the pace down keep Cibona down. Still Warren persisted and drilled a triple over Garcia, but Fizer answered with a basket-plus-foul. A basket by Hoskin in the paint was followed by a Halperin steal and Bynum slam that even the local fans applauded. Warren kept plugging away with a three and Kelley soon joined him to cut the gap to 36-51, but Morris dished to Fizer for an easy hoop. Another Kelley three awoke the fans, but Morris matched him. The hosts were jacking up triples on nearly every possession now and soon Hoskin hit one for the first 2-three-pointer game of his Euroleague career. When Marin Rozic added one from downtown, Cibona was 6 of 9 from beyond the arc in the period and had cut the deficit to 49-59. After a Batista tip-in, Kelley beat the third-period buzzer with a halfcourt heave to get the hosts within 53-62 heading into the deciding period.

Andric got Cibona even closer with a basket on the offensive glass and then Hoskin hit a long jumper to make it a 5-point game. Hoskin added another jumper and then a triple to finish a 12-0 run that tied the game at 62-62. Kelley fouled Bynum, who was attempting a three and then made 3 free throws to end the Maccabi drought. Kelley made another wild three, but couldn’t wrest the lead away from Maccabi, which was getting most of its points from the line now. Hoskin made it 69-70, but Bynum came right back with a triple. After another Hoskin hoop inside, Kelley converted a three-point play with 2:25 that gave Cibona its first lead since the start of the second period, 74-73. But a Bynum drive followed by Halperin free throws put Maccabi back up by 3. Rozic scored and was fouled with 1:25 to go, but missed the free throw. However both teams missed on their next trips downcourt and Morris gave Maccabi a 76-79 lead with 10.6 seconds remaining. Andric lost the ball on a pivotal possession and then needing a foul, sent Halperin to the line, who iced the win with 2 big free throws.

Thursday, January 17, 2008
Attendance: 4500
By Quarter1234
Maccabi Elite17271819
End of Quarter1234
Maccabi Elite17446281
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 WARREN, CHRIS 37:27 12 1/6 3/9 1/2 1 4 5 1   1     3 5 7
5 KELLEY, TRE 19:00 18 2/3 4/5 2/5   2 2 2 2 2     3 5 19
6 KRUSLIN, FILIP DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
7 KRASIC, BARISA 7:19     0/1             1         -2
11 VUKUSIC, VEDRAN DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
12 ANDRIC, LUKSA 32:41 10 4/5 0/1 2/3 6 9 15 3   4 2 1 4 3 21
13 AYUSO, LARRY 19:42   0/3 0/3                   1 1 -6
14 KASTROPIL, FRANKO 2:03 2 1/1     1   1           1   2
15 HOSKIN, SAM 37:57 27 8/11 3/7 2/4 2 6 8 2   1 1 1 3 4 28
19 PRINC, VEDRAN 14:33 2 1/1 0/1     2 2     2     1    
20 ROZIC, MARIN 22:42 5 1/4 1/1 0/1   3 3 3 3 3 1 1 5 1 3
44 MULAOMEROVIC, DAMIR 6:36     0/3           1 2     3   -7
Team             1 1     1          
Totals 200:00 76 18/34 11/31 7/15 10 27 37 11 6 17 4 3 24 19 65
        52.9% 35.5% 46.7%
Head coach: SUNARA, IVAN
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
Maccabi Elite
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 BYNUM, WILL 31:20 21 6/6 2/4 3/3       2 3       2 5 27
5 FIZER, MARCUS 24:11 12 5/10   2/3 1 4 5 1   7     3 3 5
6 SHARP, DERRICK 4:18     0/2     1 1           2   -3
7 VUJCIC, NIKOLA DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
8 ELIYAHU, LIOR DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
9 MORRIS, TERENCE 40:00 11 3/6 1/3 2/4 2 13 15 2 3 1 3   2 2 26
11 CASSPI, OMRI 13:36 2 1/3 0/1     1 1     2   1 1 1 -3
12 GARCIA, ALEX 24:26 6 0/2 1/3 3/6 1 1 2   2 1   1 4 4 1
13 BLU, DAVID 9:48 4 1/2 0/2 2/2 1   1           1 1 2
14 CUMMINGS, VONTEEGO 8:40   0/2                   1 1   -4
15 BATISTA, ESTEBAN 15:48 12 6/9     2 8 10 1 3   1   3 1 22
21 HALPERIN, YOTAM 27:53 13 1/2 1/4 8/8   3 3 3 2 1   1 1 7 21
Team           2   2   2           4
Totals 200:00 81 23/42 5/19 20/26 9 31 40 9 15 12 4 4 20 24 98
        54.8% 26.3% 76.9%
Head coach: SHERF, ZVI
Maccabi Elite
"It was definitely a test of character. But I’d be willing to win every game until the end of the season by 5 points. We has a bit of a letdown as far as offensive ability, but it was also hard to stop their amazing shooting from three. Cibona of the second half of the game was a team at a very high Euroleague level. In the end we had a few good stops, including taking an important rebound that led to the win."
Maccabi Elite
"I think that the first half was one of our best this season. We took an important win at a difficult road court. It’s true, we shouldn’t have let the game get so close, but what is important is that we won."
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