With the bright lights upon him in a primetime Game of the Week showdown for first place in Group C, reigning Euroleague Rising Star Award winner Nikola Mirotic shined brighter than ever in leading Real Madrid to a convincing 88-64 victory over Maccabi Electra at Caja Magica on Thursday night. In doing so, Mirotic poured in a career-high 26 points and picked up Week 8 bwin MVP honors. Mirotic staked the Whites to early leads with 12 first-quarter points and had 10 more in the second quarter. His dunk early in the third quarter gave Madrid a double-digit lead as the rest of the team joined in and put Maccabi away for good. When the final buzzer sounded, Mirotic had amassed 26 points on 4-of-5 three-point shooting plus 8 rebounds, an assists and 3 steals en route to a performance index rating of 33, which was the best among all players on winning teams in Week 8. The player with the best index rating of Week 8 was Caja Laboral forward Mirza Teletovic, who roared for a career-best 32 points and a 34 index in an 84-82 loss at Olympiacos. Teletovic was 5 of 8 from downtown in addition to 7 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks, but his impressive showing was not enough in the end. Partizan mt:s point guard Acie Law returned from missing a game through injury to post 22 points and a 27 index, which was third best in Week 8. However Law’s Partizan fell in the end 84-79 at Belgacom Spirou. Rounding out the list of Week 8’s top individual performers were Brose Baskets guard Julius Jenkins and KK Zagreb swingman Krunoslav Simon. Jenkins starred in his team’s 79-90 road win at Unicaja with 23 points and 5 assists off the bench for a performance index rating of 25. Simon matched that 25 index with 21 points and 5 assists in an 87-74 loss at undefeated CSKA Moscow. You also have a choice! Vote for your bwin fan MVP!
Individual highs: Donatas Motiejunas, 21 rebounds
Teletovic’s scoring display on Thursday night strengthened his grip on first place in the scoring column for the season as he increased his league-best average to 22-9 points per game – which is more than 3 points per game more than the next players on the list. Donatas Motiejunas dominated the glass to the tune of a new record in Asseco Prokom’s 67-52 win over Olimpija. Motiejunas’s 21 rebounds marked the most by a player this season and made him just the third man in Euroleague history to haul in more than 20, Moreover his 18 defensive rebounds made for a new single-game Euroleague record. Motiejunas ranks second in rebounding this season with 8.5 per game, which trails only injured CSKA forward Andrei Kirilenko with 9 per game. Olimpija point guard Aleksandar Capin and Madrid playmaker Sergio Rodriguez were the top chefs in Week 8 with 7 assists apiece. Rodriguez now leads the league for the season with 5.8 dishes per game. Galatasaray Medical Park guard Jamon Lucas swiped 5 steals in a 63-67 loss to Montepaschi Siena. Lucas is now tied for eighth in the Euroleague with 1.6 steals per game. Pablo Prigioni of Caja Laboral leads all players with 2.5 steals per game. Anadolu Efes forward Ersan Ilyasova and SLUC Nancy center Akin Akingbala topped all Week 8 performers with 4 blocks each. Ilyasova is now ranked fourth in the league with 1.5 rejections per game. Kirilenko tops the chart with 3.2 blocks per game. Five players registered double doubles in Week 8: Motiejunas (11 points, 21 rebounds), Boris Rothbart (16 points, 11 rebounds)of Olimpija, Sonny Weems (16 points, 12 rebounds) of Zalgiris, P.J. Tucker (11 points, 13 rebounds) of Brose Baskets and Milan Macvan (10 points, 12 rebounds) of Partizan.