Regular Season Round 15 MVP: Keith Langford, Unics Kazan

Dec 31, 2016 by Euroleague.net Print
Regular Season Round 15 MVP: Keith Langford, Unics Kazan

The way things are going right now, Keith Langford may not want 2016 to end. The Unics Kazan guard played an instrumental role in leading his team back from a 14-point third-quarter deficit to defeat Panathinaikos Superfoods Athens 83-81 on Friday, and in doing so claimed MVP honors for Round 15 of the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Regular Season. It marked the second time in a row that Langford earned the MVP of the round honors, giving him three such distinctions this season. Langford shined with 27 points after making 6 of 11 two-pointers and all 3 of his three-point tries. He was 6 of 7 from the foul line, as well, dished 5 assists and drew 11 fouls for a performance index rating of 38, which was his second-best of the season. At the midway mark of the regular season, Langford leads the league in index rating (25.5 per game), scoring (24.1 ppg.) and fouls drawn (106). The second-highest index rating for Round 15 was 32 from Maccabi FOX Tel Aviv forward Victor Rudd in a 101-88 loss at Baskonia Vitoria Gasteiz. Rudd amassed a season-high 20 points with only 3 missed shots plus 5 rebounds and 5 assists. Real Madrid's teenage sensation Luka Doncic and Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade center Ognjen Kuzmic were next on the list of Round 15's best with index ratings of 31 in respective victories by their teams. Doncic shined in a 78-80 road win at Anadolu Efes Istanbul with 17 points, 5 rebounds and a career-high 9 assists. He made 3 of 4 three-pointers to lead Madrid to victory in place of Sergio Llull, who missed the game due to illness. Kuzmic amassed 16 points, 10 rebounds and 2 blocks in a 78-67 rout of CSKA Moscow. Rounding out the list of Round 15's stars were two players who stood out in losing efforts: Jan Vesely of Fenerbahce Istanbul and Austin Daye of Galatasaray Odeabank Istanbul. Vesely scored 22 points on 10-for-13 shooting and grabbed 10 rebounds in a 71-62 loss at Olympiacos Piraeus. Daye marked his return from injury with 20 points on 4-for-5 three-point shooting in a 75-90 home loss to Brose Bamberg. Both players had index ratings of 29.

Individual leaders: Charles Jenkins of Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade, 6 steals

With his 27 points, Langford not only led all players in Round 15, but upped his league-high average to 24.1 points per game, which is 5 points more than the next-best player, reigning Alphonso Ford Top Scorer Trophy winner Nando De Colo of CSKA Moscow (19.1 ppg.). The career-high 14 rebounds collected by Brose Bamberg big man Daniel Theis were the most of this round. Kuzmic remains this season's top rebounder with an average of 8.1 boards per game. Shane Larkin not only tied a Baskonia club record with his 13 assists against Maccabi, but also dished the most assists of the round and the second-most all season! Larkin is now fourth in the league with 6.3 per game; CSKA playmaker Milos Teodosic remains atop the standings with 7.9 per game. Charles Jenkins broke his own Crvena Zvezda record with 6 steals, which were also the season-high for the entire competition. His average of 2.1 steals per game is most in the league. Theis and Fenerbahce center Ekpe Udoh shared this week's top spot with 3 blocked shots each. Udoh's 2.1 blocks per game is the best in the EuroLeague. Four players recorded double-doubles in Round 15: Kuzmic, Larkin (13 points, 13 assists), Vesely and Khem Birch (10 points, 13 rebounds) of Olympiacos.