Maccabi Electra downed Real Madrid 88-82
Maccabi Electra sent a message that echoed all around the Turkish Airlines Euroleague by downing previously undefeated Real Madrid 88-82 in front of a sellout crowd at Nokia Arena in Tel Aviv, Israel in Group C on Wednesday night. Maccabi and Madrid join Anadolu Efes in a three-way tie atop this group's standings, each with a 2-1 record. Jordan Farmar led the winners with 27 points on 9-of-11 two-pointers. David Blu and Sofoklis Schortsanitis each added 16 while Devin Smith had 15 for Maccabi. Jaycee Carroll led Madrid with 18 points. Felipe Reyes added 15 while Rudy Fernandez had 13 for the guests. Richard Hendrix and Farmar allowed Maccabi to get a 19-13 margin late in the first quarter. Reyes and Serge Ibaka stepped up to tie the game, 21-21, after 10 minutes. A jumper by Sergio Rodriguez gave Madrid a 25-31 margin right after that but Schortsanitis led an 11-0 run that restored a 36-31 Maccabi edge. A buzzer-beating triple by Blu made Maccabi reach halftime with a 46-41 lead. Smith and Schortsanitis kept pacing Maccabi after the break, as the hosts boosted their lead to 74-62 after 30 minutes. Reyes, Carroll and Fernandez managed to bring Madrid within 85-80 already in the final minute but free throws by Farmar allowed Maccabi to put the victory on ice.
Real Madrid head coach Pablo Laso placed center Mirza Begic in the starting lineup to guard Schortsanitis. Farmar got Maccabi going with a driving basket but Fernandez and Sergio Llull answered from downtown for a 2-6 Madrid lead. Farmar kept pacing Maccabi with back-to-back driving layups, as Madrid kept trying to open the floor with long-distance shots. Lior Eliyahu took over with a running jumper that Fernandez matched with free throws for an 8-8 tie. Schotsanitis and Carlos Suarez traded foul shots but a jumper by Smith gave Maccabi a 12-10 edge. Hendrix set the crowd on fire with a big slam but Fernandez downed his second triple for a 14-13 score. Hendrix kept pacing Maccabi with a three-point play and Theo Papaloukas fed Blu for a fast break layup, good for a 19-13 lead. Nikola Mirotic hit free throws and a layup by Reyes brought Madrid within 19-17. Ibaka took over with a huge put-back dunk but a layup by Farmar and free throws by Reyes fixed the score at 21-21 after 10 minutes.
Rodriguez scored off a midcourt steal early in the second quarter but an easy basket by Hendrix tied the game again, 23-23. Ibaka stepped up with a layup-plus-foul but Blu quickly answered with an acrobatic layup. Carroll struck from downtown and a jumper by Rodriguez gave Madrid a six-point lead, 25-31. Farmar scored his fifth basket in penetration and a layup by Schortsanitis got the crowd involved at 29-31. Blu followed a corner triple with a six-meter jumper and Schortsanitis added a power basket for a 36-31 Maccabi lead, after an 11-0 run. Reyes tried to change things with a long jumper that Schortsanitis erased with another big basket in the low post. Marty Pocius fed Ante Tomic for an easy dunk but back-to-back layups by Farmar and Schortsanitis boosted the hosts' lead to 42-35. Ibaka dunked it and Pocius matched Farmar's free throws with a fast break layup. Fernandez shocked everyone with a high-flying dunk but a buzzer-beating three-pointer by Blu restored a 46-41 Maccabi lead at halftime.
Blu sank a mid-range jumper immediately after the break and Smith dunked it in transition for a 50-41 Maccabi margin. Begic, back on the floor to guard Schortsanitis, stepped up with a put-back layup but Farmar fed Yogev Ohayon for a three-pointer that made it a double-digit game, 53-43. Maccabi was all over the place in defense and Schortsanitis scored in transition to force Madrid to call timeout at 55-43. Carroll sank a floating layup and Suarez downed a triple off a scream to get Madrid within 56-48. Schortsanitis set the crowd on fire with a three-point play but Rodriguez erased it with a bomb from downtown. Smith took over with a one-handed floater but Carroll bettered that with a triple for a 61-54 Madrid deficit. Farmar joined the three-point shootout and Smith buried a jumper for a 66-54 score. Carroll hit back-to-back triples but a red hot Carroll answered in the same way to keep Madrid alive. Farmar scored again but free throws by Reyes kept Madrid within 74-62 after 30 minutes.
Reyes sank a six-meter jumper early in the fourth quarter, as Maccabi tried to run the game clock down by using long possessions. Ibaka soon added free throws to give Madrid some hope at 75-66. Blu stepped up with a mid-range jumper that Pocius matched with free throws. The guests kept missing opem shots, however, as Maccabi kept powering the offensive board. A second-chance offense allowed Smith to split free throws and another driving basket by Farmar gave Maccabi some fresh air, 80-68, with 6 minutes left. Reyes kept trying to change things with a baseline jumper and free throws by Carroll brought Madrid within 81-72 with 4 minutes to go. Farmar scored around the basket but a three-pointer by Fernandez got Madrid a bit closer, 83-75. A three-point play by Reyes and more free throws by Carroll made it a five-point game, 85-80, with 46.1 seconds to go. Farmar had a critical steal and hit free throws that sealed the outcome, allowing an outstanding crowd to celebrate a well-deserved win, important home win.
Thursday, November 3, 2011