Draper buzzer-beater gives Real Madrid win over brave Bamberg
Real Madrid remained undefeated at home in the 2013 Turkish Airlines Euroleague season with a 76-73 win over Brose Baskets Bamberg, but it took everything it had to defeat the brave German champs. Dontaye Draper’s three-pointer at the buzzer clinched the win for Madrid and lifted the club to 8-1 in the Top 16. Still without a win in this stage of the competition, Brose Baskets was on the losing end of a tight finish for the fourth straight game. On an off-night for Madrid’s offense, Jaycee Carroll was the only player on the winning side to break into double-digits in scoring with 11 points. Instead, the dominant performance was from Rudy Fernandez on defense, as he contributed 11 rebounds to add to his 9 points and 4 assists. For Brose Baskets, Anton Gavel led the way with 15 points and 5 rebounds, Maik Zirbes contributed 14 points and 6 boards, Jeremiah Massey added 11 points and Matt Walsh put in 10.
First quarter: Early shootout sees keeps sides close
On his return to the Spanish capital, former Real Madrid player Massey opened up the scoring with a three-pointer for Brose Baskets. A pacey start to the game saw Brose taking it to Madrid, but the home team responded and would not let its opponent get a lead together. Sergio Rodriguez’s triple put the score to 8-8 before the first timeout was called. On that timeout, Brose coach Chris Fleming refined the tactics, and Casey Jacobsen resumed play with another basket from downtown. Rafael Hettsheimeir’s replica shot put Madrid back ahead, then Massey continued the shootout with another first quarter triple. A move in play to inside proved equally balanced between the two sides. Massey broke into double-digits off a steal and dunk and Philipp Neumann produced an outrageous block on Fernandez, but there was always a response from Madrid. Carroll’s two handed jam, for example, or Fernandez’s 5 defensive rebounds. Madrid looked impressive, but Brose Baskets was not backing out of the fight. The first quarter concluded with a slim 21-20 advantage for the hosts.
Second quarter: Gavel heats up, Llull keeps Madrid alive
The lead was reversed straight after the restart by Anton Gavel’s three-pointer from the top of the key. He hit a second and a third immediately after, trying to break Brose Baskets clear. The strategy proved successful when the visiting side pulled out an 8-point lead, inspired by a quick pair of inside baskets from A.J. Ogilvy. Madrid halved the deficit before Gavel sent down a long two-pointer to break up the comeback and Walsh went deeper, sinking a triple from far beyond the perimeter. Unfortunately for Bamberg, Sergio Llull picked things up for Madrid and contributed 4 points to reduce the score at halftime to 39-41.
Third quarter: Zirbes and Gavel give Brose Baskets lead
It didn’t take long after the teams reemerged for Madrid to turn the game around. Nikola Mirotic was fouled and he took Los Blancos 42-41 up. An attempt to extend that advantage was halted, however, by Zirbes’s block on Rodriguez and his close range baskets at the other end of the floor. The big boost for the hosts came with Fernandez’s first points of the night, a smooth three-pointer, answered excellently by Sharrod Ford with a replica shot 4 seconds later. The defining moment of the quarter came right at the end, when Gavel stepped back for a two-pointer under pressure to take the game into the final quarter up 57-60.
Fourth quarter: Madrid makes late recovery and Draper seals the deal
If it had been close at the start of the fourth quarter, then suddenly there was a slowdown in momentum for Madrid when Karsten Tadda put down a triple for the 59-64. With the fans whistling and jeering, Fernandez put them back onside with a dunk, then Carroll reversed the advantage with a basket-plus-foul. An 11-4 run by Madrid suggested a comeback like that of last week against Alba Berlin could be on the cards. Once the game tied up, the tension mounted and some key plays followed. Zirbes made a huge block on Draper, Ford fouled out and Los Blancos went 70-64 ahead just past the halfway mark in the quarter. It looked as if Madrid would outlast its opponent once again, but outside shooting would have another say when Walsh’s three-pointer made it a 1-point game. Fernandez had been quiet on scoring, but his running two-pointer kept Madrid’s nose ahead as a response. Walsh knocked down 2 free throws, and that brought everything down to the final 24 seconds. An amazing sequence followed, in which Draper split free throws, Zirbes drew the game level at 73-73 and Madrid had one last possession. Fernandez drew everybody inside, kicked it out to Draper and the guard made amends with the winning three-pointer, right on the buzzer.
Thursday, March 28, 2013