A pivotal game in Group A is scheduled for Wednesday in Istanbul, Turkey, where Fenerbahce Ulker hosts Asvel Basket. Fenerbahce is third in Group A with a 3-3 record and Asvel is right behind at 2-4 and hopes to keep its winning streak going after consecutive home triumphs against Cibona and Zalgiris. The winner of this game will take a giant step forwards towards sealing a Top 16 berth. Asvel is still without center Curtis Borchardt, who has been sidelined since Week 2. As such, Ali Traore will be its main reference around the baskets, with Victor Samnick, Eric Campbell and Kristjan Kangur sharing playing time in the guests' frontcourt. Fenerbahce has an advantage due to its power and strength inside. Omer Asik is ready for a big battle against Traore. Asik had 13 points and 10 rebounds in Lyon, France, to help Fener beat Asvel 76-78 in overtime in Week 2. Oguz Savas may be a decisive factor for Fenerbahce due to his size, post skills and good hands. Center Semih Erden and defensive ace Rasim Rasak are set to offer intensity and toughness off the bench, as Mirsad Turkcan is not expected to make his Euroleague debut this weekend. On the wings, Asvel turns to Rawle Marshall and Mindaugas Lukauskis, while Ben Dewar is expected back and veteran sharp shooter Laurent Foirest provides leadership and unlimited range, too. Marshall has the tough mission to guard Emir Preldzic, a natural-born mismatch due to his size, ball-handling skills and all-around game. Lukauskis is ready for a big matchup against Tarence Kinsey and Gordan Giricek. Serhan Cetin has entered his team's rotation and could be the X-factor for Fener. The point guard battle will be equally interesting, as Lynn Greer faces a critical matchup against Asvel playmaker Bobby Dixon. Greer hopes to use his experience against a quick opponent that has been playing really well lately. Damir Mrsic offers unlimited shooting range, experience and court sense off the hosts' bench and is set to battle against Asvel's backup point guard Aymeric Jeanneau. Asvel must slow down the game tempo and prevent FB Ulker from getting easy points in the paint. Fener must find Asik and Savas around the baskets, creating double-team situations to get open shots from its perimeter players. Expect a very interesting battle in Istanbul this Wednesday.
REFEREES: Guerrino Cerebuch, Matej Boltauzer, Sergey Chebyshev
Head coach Bogdan Tanjevic coached at Asvel Basket during the 2001-02 season, leading the team to the French League title. Tanjevic coached a young Ali Traore that season.
Lynn Greer needs just 7 more points to reach 1,000 for his Euroleague career.
Mirsad Turkcan has scored in double figures in eight consecutive Euroleague games. He has made at least one three-pointer in each of those games.
Oguz Savas has averaged 13 points and 6.3 rebounds per game at home this season, but just 2.3 points and 3 rebounds on the road.
Omer Asik picked up his first double-double in nearly two years in Week 2 when he posted 13 points and 10 rebounds against Asvel Basket.
Tarence Kinsey scored a career-high 21 points in a Week 2 win over Asvel Basket.
Mindaugas Lukauskis has recorded at least 1 steal in each of his last eight Euroleague appearances.
Ben Dewar’s scoring output has increased in every game so far this season.
Kristjan Kangur has made 12 consecutive free throws over his past six Euroleague games.
Eric Campbell scored a season-high 15 points last week in a victory over Zalgiris.
Laurent Foirest scored a season-high 15 points last week in a victory over Zalgiris.
Ali Traore scored 29 points and grabbed 13 rebounds – both career highs – in a Week 2 overtime loss against Fenerbahce Ulker.