2021-22Regular SeasonRound 16
December 16, 2021 CET: 20:30
Local time: 20:30 MEDIOLANUM FORUM

Real holds off Milan in a thriller

Real Madrid nearly squandered an 11-point lead in the final 2 minutes, but in the end managed to pull out a thrilling 73-75 road win over AX Armani Exchange Milan on Thursday night at Mediolanum Forum. Real improved to 13-3 to stay in second place in the standings, while Milan dropped to 10-6 for the season. Real took control of the game in the second quarter behind Guerschon Yabusele and kept the margin safe throughout the second half. Behind Rudy Fernandez and Fabien Causeur the visitors led 62-73 and had possession with just over 2 minutes to go, but Shavon Shields and Luigi Datome rallied the hosts, who even had a three-pointer to win it, but Malcolm Delaney's corner triple at the buzzer rimmed out. Causeur finished with 17 points to lead Real. Yabusele scored 15, Sergio Llull had 12 points and Fernandez 10 in victory. Shields had a game-high 18 points for Milan and Sergio Rodriguez scored 10 in a losing effort.

The teams opened the game on fire. Nigel Williams-Goss opened Real's tally with a three-pointer, with Nicolo Melli answering with a corner triple for Milan. After Causeur and Troy Daniels traded threes, big man Vincent Poirier also nailed one from long range to make it 8-11. But Milan answered with a 7-0 run, capped by a runner from Rodriguez, and the hosts led 19-14 before Anthony Randolph and Yabusele cut it to 19-18 after 10 minutes.

Yabusele got going, knocking down a pair of triples early in the second, followed by a long jumper to make it 23-26. Shields took it to the rim, but Real scored the next 9 points, with Fernandez getting a lucky roll on a three-pointer and Llull beating the shot-clock with a long three to lead 25-35. Shields beat the buzzer with a layup to make it 27-35 at halftime.

Shields opened the third quarter with a triple ad then followed it up with a steal and a fastbreak dunk to fire up his team and the crowd. But Real answered with a pair of fastbreak baskets, including a triple from Causeur. Delaney had a pair of baskets for the hosts and added a long jumper that cut it to 40-44. Causeur and Giampaolo Ricci traded three-pointers before Randolph and Rodriguez exchanged layups, only for Fernandez and Llull making a triple apiece for the visitors late in the third, making it 48-55 after 30 minutes.

After Ricci knocked down a three-pointer early in the fourth, another three-pointer from Llull sparked a 2-10 Real run during which Yabusele hit a turnaround jumper, Causeur nailed a triple, and Llull capped it with a fastbreak layup to make it 57-67 with under 6 minutes to go. Ben Bentil had a dunk and Rodriguez a triple, but Fernandez and Causeur scored easy baskets to keep the margin in double figures. Milan made one final push, and a triple from Shields got the hosts within 67-73 with 1:21 to go. Then Datome made a pair of free throws and a tough three with 23 seconds left to cut the margin to 72-74. Causeur and Hanga missed free throws, allowing Devon Hall to go the free-throw line with 5 seconds left, and Milan trailing 72-75. Hall made the first one, purposely missed the second one, Milan got the offensive rebound and Delaney fired a corner three that just rimmed out, as Real pulled out the victory.

Shooting percentages make the difference

Real shot the ball really well in this game. Los Blancos nailed 13 triples on 27 attempts (48.1%). It was arguably their best three-point shooting night of the season, as they tied their season-high in triples made, and knocked them down with second-best accuracy of the first 16 games. Real was not particularly dominant inside, but still made more than half of its two-point shots (15 for 29). That was significantly better than what the hosts shot. Milan was 17 for 40 on two-pointers (42.5%) and just 8 for 23 from long range (34.8%).

Shot-blocking milestone for Tavares

Walter Tavares moved into third place all-time in blocked shots. Tavares entered the game with 248 blocks for his career and had 3 blocks - all in the first half - to overtake Fran Vazquez who ranked ahead of him with 249. In the process, Tavares became only the third player in EuroLeague history who reached 250 career blocked shots, behind only all-time leader Bryant Dunston (279) of Anadolu Efes Istanbul, and Milan's Kyle Hines (270).

Tavares got into foul trouble early in the third quarter and finished with 5 points, 8 rebounds and 3 blocks for the night, however still managed to pull down a key offensive rebound in the final seconds that allowed Real to run 10 seconds off the clock with a 3-point lead.

Real and Milan continue their trends

Real now holds a 16-3 record against Milan this century and this was the fifth game in a row between these two teams that neither team has scored more than 80 points. After Real scored at least 88 points and averaged 94.3 in six games, all wins, against Milan between October 2016 and March 2019, in the last five games over the last three seasons, Milan has held Real to 75.0 points. This was also the seventh consecutive game between Real and Milan decided by a single-figure margin; five of those have been decided by 5 or fewer points.

Fabien Causeur - Real Madrid - EB21
Thursday, December 16, 2021
Euroleague.net
Referees: BELOSEVIC, ILIJA; KOROMILAS, ELIAS; TRAWICKI, TOMASZ
Attendance: 6974
By Quarter1234
AX Armani Exchange Milan1982125
Real Madrid18172020
End of Quarter1234
AX Armani Exchange Milan19274873
Real Madrid18355575
AX Armani Exchange Milan
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
9 MELLI, NICOLO 28:51 6 0/2 1/4 3/4   9 9 1 1   1 1 2 3 12
10 GRANT, JERIAN DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
13 RODRIGUEZ, SERGIO 23:39 10 3/5 1/2 1/1   3 3 5 1 3     4 3 12
15 TARCZEWSKI, KALEB 0:40                              
17 RICCI, GIAMPAOLO 13:45 6   2/2   2   2   1       2   7
22 HALL, DEVON 21:46 6 2/6 0/2 2/3   2 2 1   1   1 3 2 -1
23 DELANEY, MALCOLM 24:32 9 3/5 0/4 3/6 1 3 4 4   4     4 6 6
30 DANIELS, TROY 6:50 3   1/1     1 1     1     1   2
31 SHIELDS, SHAVON 29:05 18 5/8 2/4 2/3   2 2   2 1     1 5 19
42 HINES, KYLE 24:02 2 1/7     6 3 9 2 2     2 3 1 5
50 BENTIL, BEN 14:42 6 2/4 0/2 2/2         1 1     1 2 3
70 DATOME, LUIGI 12:08 7 1/3 1/2 2/2 1   1     1     1   3
Team           1 1 2     1         1
Totals 200:00 73 17/40 8/23 15/21 11 24 35 13 8 13 1 4 22 22 69
        42.5% 34.8% 71.4%
Head coach: MESSINA, ETTORE
Min: Minutes played; Pts: Points; 2FG M-A: 2-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); 3FG M-A: 3-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); FT M-A: Free Throws (Made-Attempted); Rebounds: O (Offensive), D (Defensive), T (Total); As: Assists; St: Steals; To: Turnovers; Bl: Blocks (Fv: In Favor / Ag: Against); Fouls: Cm (Commited), Rv (Received); PIR: Performance Index Rating
Real Madrid
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
0 WILLIAMS-GOSS, NIGEL 9:13 5 1/3 1/2         2   2     2    
1 CAUSEUR, FABIEN 28:30 17 2/3 4/6 1/2   3 3     2   1 3 5 15
2 NUNEZ, JUAN 3:28   0/1                     1   -2
3 RANDOLPH, ANTHONY 11:14 4 2/2       2 2               6
5 FERNANDEZ, RUDY 25:07 10 2/3 2/6     6 6 1 1 1     2 4 14
8 HANGA, ADAM 13:35 4 2/2 0/1 0/2   3 3 1 1       2 2 6
11 VUKCEVIC, TRISTAN DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
17 POIRIER, VINCENT 18:28 3   1/1     4 4 2 1 3 1   2 1 7
22 TAVARES, WALTER 16:47 5 1/3   3/4 3 5 8 1   2 3   4 2 10
23 LLULL, SERGIO 27:55 12 1/7 3/7 1/3       5 1 3     2 3 4
28 YABUSELE, GUERSCHON 31:53 15 4/5 2/3 1/2 2 4 6 1 1 1     1 4 22
44 TAYLOR, JEFFERY 13:50     0/1     1 1 2         4   -2
Team           1 2 3     2         1
Totals 200:00 75 15/29 13/27 6/13 6 30 36 15 5 16 4 1 23 21 81
        51.7% 48.1% 46.2%
Head coach: LASO, PABLO

Head Coaches

MESSINA, ETTORE
AX Armani Exchange Milan

"Congratulations to Real Madrid on the win in a game that was hard-fought by both teams. It is very difficult to make a comment because we won three quarters and we lost the game because of the terrible second quarter that we played offensively. We scored 8 points in the second quarter. Of course, you have to give credit to their defense, but that's not what you expect to do in such a big game. Three quarters were not enough. And when we scored in the second half, we gave up I think some easy baskets that were not part of what we hoped for this game. We have to work, get better, and Real Madrid is a team that can beat you in any game if you don't play perfect. They shot the ball well, even sometimes when the shots were surely not planned. But that's how it is. Percentages are always important, and tonight we did not have enough percentages."

 

MATEO, CHUS

Assistant Coach Real Madrid

"It was a very exciting game, a very tough game until the end. We knew it would be so tough. I think our mentality was very good from the beginning until the end. We hesitated a little bit in the beginning, but we defended the whole game and reached the end of the game with an option to win, which we hoped we would do coming in here. We came knowing they play good defense and that it would be difficult for us to play good on offense. The thing is that we got the right mentality to go into this game between a second-place and third-place team. And we knew we would need to keep concentration until the end, and after we had a small advantage at halftime, we knew they would come back in the second half, that they are going to be tougher and fight to win at home. I am very proud of our players because they understood they have to fight for 40 minutes. They kept fighting when we were winning, and they kept fighting when we were losing."

Players

YABUSELE, GUERSCHON
Real Madrid
"We expected at halftime Milan coming back and playing strong. They played good, but we had to stay strong and finish the game. It was all mental. We had to stay focused when we had the game and not lose control and we won the game."
CAUSEUR, FABIEN
Real Madrid
"I had a good shooting night. When I scored my first two shots, I got the confidence and I was feeling good. It's a gym that I love, I love the atmosphere in Milan. It was an amazing game tonight, and we are super happy that we won. I was happy that the game was over. The last 5 minutes we did not control the game well. We had an opportunity to kill it before, but we missed too many free throws and Milan put some pressure on us, they hit some big shots to come back. A lot of credit to them, but we are happy to go back home with a win."