Regular Season Round 13 - January 24, 2007 CET: 20:30 Local time: 20:30 - FERNANDO BUESA ARENA

Records

Ave.   Ave.
0-0 Final Four 0-0
0-0 Playoffs 0-0
0-0 Top 16 0-0
0-1 Regular Season 0-1
10-2 Overall 5-7

Referees

Crew Chief
JUNGEBRAND, CARL, Finland
Referee
TAURINO, PAOLO, Italy
Umpire
LOPES, LUIS, Portugal

Team Stats

Ave.   Ave.
83.6 Points 73.3
31.5 Rebounds 31.4
10.9 O. Rebounds 9.0
20.6 D. Rebounds 22.4
16.9 Assists 12.8
12.2 Steals 9.4
2.3 Blocks 2.5
12.9 Turnovers 12.8
53.6 % 2PT 48.4 %
38.2 % 3PT 34.2 %
65.7 % FT 72.3 %
90.6 Index 73.3

Player Stats

Ave.   Ave.
16.8 / SCOLA, LUIS Points 11.5 / DALMAU, C.
5.3 / SCOLA, LUIS Rebounds 5.0 / BESOK, HUSEYIN
2.1 / SPLITTER, TIAGO OR 1.7 / MASIULIS, TOMAS
3.8 / SCOLA, LUIS DR 3.4 / BESOK, HUSEYIN
5.2 / PRIGIONI, PABLO Assists 2.4 / ATKINS, R.
3.0 / PRIGIONI, PABLO Steals 1.5 / DALMAU, C.
0.6 / Peker Blocks 0.6 / ATKINS, R.
1.9 / SCOLA, LUIS Turnovers 2.3 / DALMAU, C.
100.0 % / PRIGIONI, PABLO 2PT 62.5 % / NORDGAARD, J.
45.3 % / Rakocevic 3PT 47.4 % / ATKINS, R.
100.0 % / PRIGIONI, PABLO FT 100.0 % / NORDGAARD, J.
18.0 / SCOLA, LUIS Index 12.2 / BESOK, HUSEYIN

THE TAKE

Two teams fighting for different goals will go against each other in Group A on Wednesday when Tau Ceramica welcomes Prokom Trefl Sopot to Vitoria, Spain. With one more victory, Tau (10-2) will assure itself a top seeding in the Top 16, because it could then do no worse than being the best second-place team in the competition. Still, Tau might have to win twice to save first place in this group. Meanwhile, Prokom (5-7) will advance to the Top 16 only if it wins and Climamio (4-8) loses at home against Efes Pilsen. If both teams win or both lose this week, Prokom and Climamio will face off in the final regular season game, in Poland, with fifth place on the line. Tau Ceramica will be without injured perimeter players Zoran Planinic (11 ppg., 4.7 apg.) and Sergi Vidal, but can count on both Kaya Peker and Fred House, who missed the team's road loss at Climamio last week. Tau signed Ender Arslan to a short-term contract, but he is not eligible to play Euroleague games with his new team until the start of the Top 16. As such, Pablo Prigioni (7.3 ppg., 100% 2FG, 5.2 apg.) will be the only pure playmaker ready for Wednesday, although Igor Rakocevic (16.3 ppg., 45.3% 3FG) and House (6.7 ppg., 4.9 rpg., 2.6 spg.) will help with the point guard duties. The Tau backcourt also features sharpshooter Serkan Erdogan (12.5 ppg., 44.6% 3FG), but his presence on Wednesday is in doubt due to an ongoing injury. Meanwhile, Prokom has a deep, versatile backcourt in which Donatas Slanina (10.6 ppg., 87.5% FT) and Christian Dalmau (11.5 ppg.) lead the team in scoring. Playmakers Justin Hamilton (5.4 ppg.) and Rashid Atkins (5.8 ppg., 47.4% 3FG), as well as versatile Jasmin Hukic (7.2 ppg.), will help their team in many ways. Prokom will likely be without forward Jeff Nordgaard due to an elbow injury. Prokom's defense will be most concerned in slowing Luis Scola (16.8 ppg.), who will receive his December MVP trophy in a brief pre-game ceremony. Scola is just the centerpiece of a deep frontcourt featuring Peker (5.5 ppg.), Tiago Splitter (9.1 ppg., 6.1 rpg.) and Mirza Teletovic (4.5 ppg.). Splitter will have a tough test against Huseyin Besok (10.7 ppg., 5 rpg.), while Filip Dylewicz (3.3 rpg.), Adam Wojcik (8.7 ppg.) and Michael Andersen (5.5 ppg.) will have help against Scola in the low post, where the reigning Olympic champion can be unstoppable at times. Prokom will have to try dominate the game tempo with its serious defense, even though Tau is always a heavy favorite on its own court.
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
Euroleague.net - Natxo Mendaza, Vitoria

Quotes Head Coaches

PERASOVIC, VELIMIR
Tau Ceramica
"We still have some doubts about the participation of Serkan Erdogan, as he is not fully recovered. We all know this game is quite important for us, as we can secure one of the top seeds in the Top 16 draw if we can get either first place in our group or the best second overall. That's why we need the win, in addition to the fact we play at home before our fans. Every team that plays in the Euroleague can beat anyone, so you must be focused all the time. You cannot assume anything for done. Prokom plays very good basketball, tough and intense. They have a good opportunity of securing a Top 16 spot, so they will be very motivated. They have a deep roster, with many quality players who used to play for big European teams."
KIJEWSKI, EUGENIUSZ
Prokom Trefl Sopot
"We have a very hard game ahead of us. Tau is the best team in our group, extremely strong, but even so, I can see chances to beat them. They lost their last game with Climamio Bolonia, so we can also do it. The Spanish team has some problems with injuries and I hope we take advantage. Of course, we have to play better than against Rhein Energie, when we had two different halves. Against Tau, we have to play on the high level through the whole game. If we do it, we will have big chances to win."

Players

SPLITTER, TIAGO
Tau Ceramica
"It was hard for us to take two defeats in a row, but fortunately we managed to recover and I think we did a good job in our Spanish League game against Gran Canaria last weekend despite of all our problems and missing players. It was good for us because we were not in a very good mood before that. This will be a tough game for sure, as we are fighting for first place in our group and Prokom wants to secure a Top 16 spot. But every game, especially in the last weeks of the competition, is very hard. Everyone takes them as do-or-die games because everybody want to achieve their goals. They are a dangerous team, as they have a deep roster and don't rely only on a couple of players. There are many of them that can get on fire and hurt you very much in four or five minutes."
HAMILTON, JUSTIN
Prokom Trefl Sopot
"We try to win each game. This time we also will fight for victory. We know that the Spanish team is a favorite, but we can win against htem. We have to play a tough game, and be very careful on defense. The key to win the game will be stopping their inside players. If we do it, we can think about the victory. It will be the key game in order to get to the Top 16. We still need one victory and I hope we achieve this goal in Spain."
Pablo Prigioni - Tau Ceramica Tau Ceramica assured itself a top seed in the upcoming Top 16 Draw when it turned back visiting Prokom Trefl Sopot 76-64 in Group A on Wednesday. Tau lifted its record to 11-2, and though it has yet to clinch first place, will lead a Top 16 group by clinching at least the best second-place record in the competition. Prokom fell to 5-8 and will now face a showdown at home next week against Climamio Bologna in order to reach the Top 16. The visitors made a game of it by staying close to Tau until late in the third quarter before their offense dried up and the hosts pulled away to victory. Igor Rakocevic was the big gun for Tau with 20 points. Pablo Prigioni added 13 points, 9 rebounds and 7 assists. Mirza Teletovic also scored 13, while Luis Scola added 12. Tau's defense limited Prokom to just a pair of double-digit scorers, Michael Andersen with 15 points and Donatas Slanina with 11.

Scola celebrated the pre-game arrival of his December MVP trophy with the first basket of the night, but the visitors didn’t care about awards and reacted with a 0-6 run behind 4 points from Adam Wojcik. Although Scola and Tiago Splitter took over to tie the game right after that, Rashid Atkins and Donatas Slanina joined the scoring to send Prokom ahead 8-13 after 4 minutes. Tau survived thanks to a couple of offensive rebounds that allowed Splitter to dunk an alley-oop pass from Prigioni. Rakocevic followed with a fastbreak three-pointer and Prigioni a layup that let the hosts take the lead at 15-13. Prokom looked stunned, scoring only 4 points in the remaining 5 minutes. Meanwhile, a pair of three-pointers scored by Serkan Erdogan and Rakocevic added to the difference as Tau finished the first quarter with a comfortable margin, 28-20.

Michael Andersen - Prokom TreflSplitter took over early in the second quarter, scoring twice inside for the first double-digit lead, 32-22. Prokom managed to slow the pace a bit with Tomas Pacesas at the point guard, and Tau stopped getting easy baskets inside, even with Scola back on court. A free throw by Jasmin Hukic and a jumper by Michael Andersen got Prokom back on the track, within 7 points at 34-27. Despite a Tau timeout, the visitors kept forcing mistakes on the hosts, and 5 points in a row by a hot Andersen brought Prokom within 36-34 after 18 minutes. Another Tau timeout saw the hosts react, especially on defense. Free throws by Teletovic and Fred House widened the margin once again, to 42-34, but Prokom finished the half with a layup by Andersen and a big three-pointer by Christian Dalmau to close within 42-39 at the break.

Things didn’t change a lot after intermission. Although Tau tried to speed up things with good ball circulation, poor shooting prevented the hosts from escaping. Prokom got even closer, 45-43 on another basket by Andersen, but missed a chance take the lead back. That was hint enough for the hosts, who used Prigioni in the perimeter and Kaya Peker in the paint to race ahead again by 52-44. Prokom used a timeout now to calm down and play patient enough offense to reduce the gap to 54-48 on a couple of jumpers by Wojcik and Atkins at the end of three quarters.

Both teams exchanged mistakes for the first 3 minutes of the final quarter until Mirza Teletovic ended a fastbreak with a two.handed dunk for a double-digit lead at 58-48. Prokom's poor shooting and weak rebounding prevented them from threatening Tau seriously. The hosts needed little effort to extend the lead to 14 points, 64-50, with 4 minutes left to play. When the outcome was more than clear, the game became an exhibition for everybody. Tau head coach Velimir Perasovic used the last 90 seconds to reward Ariel Eslava with his first Euroleague minutes of the season, as the hosts recorded their 12th win of the regular season.
Wednesday, January 24, 2007
Natxo Mendaza, Vitoria
Referees: JUNGEBRAND, CARL (FIN), TAURINO, PAOLO (ITA), LOPES, LUIS (POR)
Attendance: 7300
By Quarter1234
Tau Ceramica28141222
Prokom Trefl Sopot2019916
End of Quarter1234
Tau Ceramica28425476
Prokom Trefl Sopot20394864
Head coach: PERASOVIC, VELIMIR
Tau Ceramica
# Player Min Pts 2FG
M-A
3FG
M-A
FT
M-A
Rebounds As St To Bl Fouls PIR
O D T Fv Ag Cm Rv
4 SCOLA, LUIS 26:15 12 5/11   2/2 2 7 9 1 1 2   1 3 5 16
5 PRIGIONI, PABLO 35:30 13 3/4 1/5 4/5 6 3 9 7 2       2 3 26
7 CILLA, JESUS 8:00   0/2 0/1   2 3 5           1   1
8 RAKOCEVIC, IGOR 36:00 20 5/6 3/9 1/2 1 2 3 3 2 4   1 2 2 15
9 VIDAL, SERGI DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
11 ERDOGAN, SERKAN 7:45 3   1/3                   1    
12 TELETOVIC, MIRZA 19:45 13 2/5 1/5 6/6 3 3 6     2       3 13
14 PEKER, KAYA 12:30 5 2/3   1/4       1     1   1 2 4
20 ESLAVA, ARIEL 2:00   0/1 0/1                       -2
21 SPLITTER, TIAGO 21:30 8 3/5   2/4 2 4 6 1   2 1   2 4 12
32 HOUSE, FRED 30:45 2 0/3 0/6 2/2 2 4 6   2 1   1 1 1 -1
Team           2 1 3               3
Totals 200:00 76 20/40 6/30 18/25 20 27 47 13 7 11 2 3 13 20 87
50% 20% 72%
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
Head coach: KIJEWSKI, EUGENIUSZ
Prokom Trefl Sopot
# Player Min Pts 2FG
M-A
3FG
M-A
FT
M-A
Rebounds As St To Bl Fouls PIR
O D T Fv Ag Cm Rv
4 HUKIC, JASMIN 16:15 1 0/1 0/1 1/2   4 4   1 1 1 1 1 2 3
5 ATKINS, RASHID 15:30 8 4/4 0/1     2 2 4 2 2 1   3   11
6 HAMILTON, JUSTIN 14:00   0/2       1 1 1 1 1   1     -1
7 MASIULIS, TOMAS 16:15 2 1/2 0/1     3 3   1 2     1   1
8 DYLEWICZ, FILIP 8:00 5 1/1 1/1                   1 1 5
9 DALMAU, CHRISTIAN 27:30 9 3/6 1/2     2 2 1 2 1     4 2 7
10 WOJCIK, ADAM 17:45 8 3/5 0/2 2/2 1 3 4     2 1   2 1 6
12 BESOK, HUSEYIN 13:00 2 1/6           1   1     2 1 -4
13 SLANINA, DONATAS 27:00 11 2/3 2/6 1/1   1 1 1         3 1 6
14 ANDERSEN, MICHAEL 25:00 15 6/8   3/5   7 7     1     2 4 19
15 PACESAS, TOMAS 19:45 3   1/3             3     1 1 -2
Team             1 1               1
Totals 200:00 64 21/38 5/17 7/10 1 24 25 8 7 14 3 2 20 13 52
55.3% 29.4% 70%
This game is not yet played

Head Coaches

PERASOVIC, VELIMIR
Tau Ceramica
"I think we played a poor game tonight, especially in the beginning, when we started too soft. We struggled a lot and needed too much time to get into the game. We tried to play better defense in the second half because we found ourselves unable to score despite our attempting so many open shots. Fortunately we dominated the boards and that gave us a chance to fix all those mistakes and win the game. I'm not so dissappointed with my players because I saw them making a big effort. When you see your players do all they can you cannot be unhappy although they were not as successful offensively as any other day. I’m happy with their work in defense."
KIJEWSKI, EUGENIUSZ
Prokom Trefl Sopot
"First of all I want to congratulate Tau. We lost this game on the boards, there is no doubt about it; rebounding was deciding tonight. When the home team managed to get a ten points advantage again in the third quarter, we were unable to react and get back into the game. We struggled a lot after that and never recovered."

Players

RAKOCEVIC, IGOR
Tau Ceramica
"We played a bad second quarter but I think that in the first one and the whole second half we made a good job. We felt a bit tired because all the practices of the last days focused on the upcoming Spanish King's Cup but we feel satisfied because we won the game and demonstrated we dominated Prokom tonight. I think we could have won this game by a bigger difference so I feel optimistic. We worked hard to improve our rebounding, especially in offense, and it wirked fine. We had a good ball circulation and I think that, even though we missed too many shots, we must feel happy after this win."
ANDERSEN, MICHAEL
Prokom Trefl Sopot
"I'm not happy at all because I made a good game but we lost. We were destroyed under the boards, we got killed on the offensive rebounding. I think that if we had been better prepared there we could have got better chances to get a win in Vitoria, but we couldn't. All the games are different and, obvioulsy be know we must be better in rebounding to defeat Climamio in the last game of this round, but I think we must forget of this and focus on playing a good defense against them and win. Maybe we noticed too late we could win in Vitoria, but after the first half we wasted our chances."
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