Keith Langford missed Unics Kazan’s Round 13 game with an ankle injury. But on Thursday, he came back and dominated to lead Unics to a come-from-behind 80-88 road win at Zalgiris Kaunas, earning with it the title of MVP for Round 14 of the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Regular Season. The league’s top scorer went for 26 points and drew 11 fouls for a performance index rating of 36, the highest of any player all week. Langford made 7 of 9 two-pointers, 2 of 5 threes and 6 of 8 free throws in addition to 4 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals in a spectacular game. In doing so, Langford claimed the fourth weekly MVP distinction of his EuroLeague career and joined reigning EuroLeague MVP Nando De Colo of CSKA Moscow as the only players to claim such honors twice this season. Round 14’s second-highest index rating came from All-EuroLeague center Ekpe Udoh, who was instrumental in Fenerbahce Istanbul’s 79-95 overtime victory at CSKA Moscow with an index rating of 33. Udoh amassed 17 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals and 5 blocks in another impressive outing. Third best index rating belongs to Ante Tomic. The FC Barcelona Lassa big man dominated in an 89-75 win over EA7 Emporio Armani Milan, needing only 21 minutes to collect 19 points on 9-for-10 shooting, along with 6 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 blocks. Langford’s teammate Art Parakhouski was also instrumental in Unics’s victory. The center made 10 of 11 shots en route to 24 points and also grabbed 4 rebounds for an index rating of 30, the fourth best in Round 14. Galatasaray Odeabank Istanbul big man Alex Tyus dominated the paint, but it was not enough as his team fell 76-86 to city rival Anadolu Efes Istanbul. Nonetheless, Tyus rocked with 15 points, 13 rebounds, 2 steals and 3 blocks for a career-best index rating of 29. Joining him with the same index rating is EA7 Milan’s forward Rakim Sanders who scored a career-high 27 points, with 4 rebounds, 2 steals and a block in the loss against Barcelona.
Individual leaders: Tyrese Rice of FC Barcelona Lassa, 11 assists
Sanders was the top scorer for the round with 27 points, but Langford increased his average to 23.9 points per game and remains the top scorer for the full season by a comfortable margin. Tyus’s 13 rebounds made him the top rebounder for the round. Fenerbahce’s Udoh and Ognjen Kuzmic of Crvena Zvezda lead all players this season with an average of 8.0 rebounds per game. Rice topped all players in Round 14 with 11 assists, which also matched Barcelona’s EuroLeague club record for assists by a player in a single game. No player has dished more for the season than CSKA Moscow playmaker Milos Teodosic, who leads the competition with 8.2 per game. EuroLeague newcomer Brandon Paul of Anadolu Efes showed his outstanding defensive skills by collecting 5 steals on Thursday to lead all Round 14 participants. Nick Calathes of Panathinaikos Superfoods Athens is EuroLeague leader this season with 1.9 steals per contest. Udoh had 5 blocks, the most of all players in this round, and his average of 2.0 per game leads the league through 14 rounds. There were six double-double performances in Round 14. Along with Udoh and Tyus, Rice had 10 points and 11 assists, Will Clyburn (20 points, 12 rebounds) of Darussafaka Dogus Istanbul, Devin Smith (12 points, 11 rebounds) of Maccabi FOX Tel Aviv, and Ilimane Diop (10 points, 10 rebounds) of Baskonia Vitoria Gasteiz.