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Game of the Week, Top 16 Game 1: Top 10 questions
December 24, 2012
Montepaschi Siena vs. Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
1 How far?
The Euroleague's leader in points and three-pointers is also third in assists and enters the Top 16 behind only Final Four MVP from last season Vassilis Spanoulis in peformance index rating. How far can Bobby Brown lead Montepaschi Siena?
2 More minutes?
Maccabi center Shawn James is by far the per-minute Euroleague leader in index rating (36.9 per 40 minutes). He nonetheless played only 18 minutes per game in the regular season, 13 fewer than Brown. Will we see more of James in the Top 16?
3 Who lights the fuse?
Siena shattered a Euroleague record by making 12.9 threes per game in the regular season. Of six Siena shooters averaging at least one, including the Euroleague's top center from long distance, Tomas Ress, who will make the first shot from downtown in the Game of the Week?
4 Who'll stop the rain?
Siena only averaged 6.5 threes, however, against Maccabi in their two regular season games, even though Maccabi allows 8.3 on average, more than all but one other Top 16 team. Which Maccabi's defender will be essential to stop a rain of threes in Siena?
5 On board or off?
Viktor Sandikize had the most rebounds against Maccabi in the regular season, 12 in Tel Aviv, but was held to just 3 in the rematch. Did Maccabi learn to stop him or can Sandikize get his rebounding groove back?
6 Free throw flow?
Siena makes more free throws than any Euroleague team (17 per game), led by Brown, the league leaguer, while Maccabi commits the fewest fouls (18.6 on average). Can Maccabi on-the-ball defensive star Ricky Hickman help keep Siena off the foul line?
7 Safe keeping?
Daniel Hackett joins Brown to form the Euroleague's best passing tandem, both in accumulated assists and assist-to-turnover ratio. Can Hackett keep up that efficiency if guarded by his former teammate Hickmann, who knows him well and leads the league in steals?
8 Inside advantage?
Maccabi makes the most two-point shots, 23.4 per game, in the Euroleague this season. Lior Eliyahu has made more two-pointers than all but one other Euroleague player (Mike Batiste) since 2006. Cany Eliyau lead the visitors to victory on the inside?
9 Hot hand?
Siena's sharpshooters went from making 5 threes in Tel Aviv to making 13 in Siena, thanks to Kristjan Kangur hitting 4 of 4 in the rematch. Still, Siena won by just 2 points at home. Does Siena need Kangur to be just as hot to win the Top 16 opener?
10 The deeper team?
With 11 Siena players averaging 10 or more minutes as compared to just 8 such players for Maccab in the regular season, which of these teams is deeper?
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