He may be a little too lean to play the part on film, but put him on the basketball court and Paf Bologna forward Gregor Fucka is looking more and more like Superman everyday. He was a marked man when Real Madrid came to Bologna on Thursday night. That only seemed to spur Fucka to greater heights, namely 34 points, 10 rebounds, 5 steals and 74-68 Paf victory that puts them in the driver's seat of the best-of-three quarterfinal series. Fucka opened the game with a three-pointer and an offensive rebound, and Madrid was already staring at a dilemma that would not be solved for the remaining 38 minutes Fucka was on the floor.
It was a great, tense and exciting game with constant changes of lead on the scorebard, as many strategic variations by the coaches, not to mention doubtful decisions on the part of Paf center Stojan Vrankovic. of the referees in front a controversial action by Stojan Vrankovic, which was not punished correctly. At the beginning of the third quarter, with 38-42 on the scoreboard, a personal foul called on Lucio Angulo against Vrankovic, properly called by the referees, left Paf's center angry. First he brushed into Alberto Herreros, and a few seconds later when Angulo arrived to face him, Vrankovic hit him with a head butt that, had the refs seen it clearly, deserved the automatic expulsion off the game. Vrankovic got off easy with a technical foul and Real Madrid used that play to score 5 points (two free throws by Angulo, three-pointer by Herreros) to boost its lead to 39-47. But from here, Real Madrid's zone defense was bombarded by the Italian team with a three-pointer by Basile and several baskets by Fucka, which cleaned the deficit significantly for Paf, 48-49 at the end of the third quarter.
In the last period, Real Madrid resisted Paf until the last two minutes (61-59 after a basket by Sasha Djordjevic, 64-62 after a three by Herreros and 66-65 with a three-point play by Herreros again). It was during these last minutes of the game, that Fucka's long shadow eclipsed the Spanish team again until the latter submitted to the Italians for the 1-0 in the series.
Thursday, February 22, 2001