Week 1 MVP: Nikola Pekovic, Partizan Igokea

Oct 26, 2007 by Euroleague.net Print
Nikola Pekovic - Partizan Igokea
One of the Euroleague's signature clubs took its first opening-week victory in five years thanks to one of the best single-game performances ever by a substitute. Nikola Pekovic came off the bench to lead Partizan Igokea's 81-78 upset home win over AXA FC Barcelona with a performance index rating of 40, good enough to make him the 2007-08 regular season's first weekly MVP. Pekovic, a 21-year-old center, set career highs for both index rating and scoring. He started scoring when he entered Wednesday's game in the first quarter and didn't stop until he had made 13 of 14 two-point shots on his way to 29 points and a key Partizan victory in Group C. Pekovic added 8 rebounds, 2 steals, a block and 7 fouls drawn to arrive at his index rating of 40. Marijonas Petravicius of Lietuvos Rytas followed with a 38 index rating, the week's second-best performance. Petravicius led L. Rytas to a 76-83 road win against Armani Jeans Milano with 28 points, including 10-for-12 two-point shooting, 8 rebounds and 3 steals. Yotam Halperin of Maccabi Elite was third in the ratings race with a 34 index based on his 18 points, 6 rebounds, 9 assists and 3 steals in a 74-71 victory over Le Mans Sarthe Basket. Ksystof Lavrinovic of Montepaschi Siena and Arvydas Macijauskas of Olympiacos, each with an index rating of 30, completed the top individual performances of the week while pacing their teams to home victories.

Individual highs: Mirza Teletovic, 17 rebounds

Mirza Teletovic - Tau Ceramica Pekovic not only became the Week 1 MVP, but it was also its top scorer with those 29 points in Partizan's home win against Barcelona. Mirza Teletovic of Tau Ceramica led all rebounders by pulling down as many as 17, including 9 offensive boards. Teletovic could not avoid his team's loss against Olympiacos in Athens, however. Halperin and Pepe Sanchez of Barcelona dished 9 assists apiece, more than anyone else in Week 1. Macijauskas collected more steals than any other player, 7, as Olympiacos defeated his former team, Tau Ceramica. Thomas Van den Spiegel of Prokom Trefl Sopot blocked 4 shots against his former team, CSKA Moscow, in the 2007-08 Euroleague opening game in Sopot, putting him on top in that statistical category. Three players - Teletovic, Giannis Bouroussis of Olympiacos and Mirsad Turkcan of Fenerbahce Ulker - registered double-doubles in the first week.