Regular Season, Round 12: Two more Top 16 spots are spoken for
Week 12 started with only five more spots in the Top 16 free for the taking, and when the dust settled, only two of them were seized - and one of those by a losing team. The week's only winning team to advance wasEfes Pilsen, which rallied to beat Lietuvos Rytas 90-84 behind 21 points from Scoonie Penn. The result helped Efes as much as it hurt L. Rytas, whose formerly exclusive hold on first place in Group B is now shared by Unicaja, which downed winless Le Mans 87-68, and by Maccabi Elite Tel Aviv, a 76-81 victor at Cibona. The latter result produced the second Top 16 qualifier of the week, but it was not the winning team, but rather Aris TT Bank, which despite its 77-69 road loss at Armani Jeans Milano was able to advance when Cibona lost, too. One team that could have qualified with or without help couldn't manage either way: Fenerbahce Ulker lost at Brose Baskets Bamberg 81-73 one night after Lottomatica Roma outlasted Partizan 88-87 in an overtime thriller. A loss by Roma would have put Fenerbahce through, but now they must visit Panathinaikos, whose 102-78 blowout of Chorale Roanne left the reigning champs a victory shy of clinching first place in Group C. Second place in Group C now belongs to Real Madrid, which won its derby with Barcelona 82-79. Second place in Group A, however, is being shared by two Week 12 winners: Montepaschi, after it topped host Virtus VidiVici 64-77, and Tau Ceramica, once it downed Union Olimpija 89-74. Zalgiris and Olympiacos, which lost at Prokom Trefl Sopot 63-59, now share fourth place in Group A. A total of three Top 16 places are still undecided, two in Group C - which will be fought for among Roma, Fenerbahce and Partizan - and the best sixth-place team overall, for which those three and Cibona are in the running still, although Chorale, Milano, Olimpija and Prokom are not yet eliminated.