Fenerbahce dumps Maccabi for 7th straight win
Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul defeated Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv 82-75 on Tuesday night at Ulker Sports and Event Hall for its seventh consecutive EuroLeague victory. Jan Vesely shined with 18 points on 9-of-11 shooting, 6 rebounds and 4 assists to pace the winners, who lifted their record to 12-10. Nando De Colo scored 16, Dyshawn Pierre added 15 and Marko Guduric had 11 for Fenerbahce. Elijah Bryant paced Maccabi with 18 points and Scottie Wilbekin recorded his first career double-double with 15 points, a career-high 10 assists and 3 steals. The loss ended a modest two-game winning streak and sent the Israeli champs' record to 10-12.
Maccabi took an early lead on a pair of Dragan Bender three-pointers, but De Colo scored with a layup and a jumper for the hosts. The team continued to trade baskets with an Angelo Caloiaro layup giving the visitors a 10-12 edge midway through the first quarter. Jarrell Eddie tied it at 15-15 with a three-pointer, but Maccabi answered with back-to-back three from Tyler Dorsey and Yovel Zoosman. A Pierre layup made it 17-21 after 10 minutes. Vesely chalked up his third dunk of the game before Pierre's dunk gave Fenerbahce the lead, 22-21. Vesely scored twice more in what became a 15-0 run for a 9-point lead. Nearly 4 minutes passed before Wilbekin's free throws marked Maccabi's first points of the second quarter. The visitors fought back with Dorsey scoring twice in a 2-9 charge to get within 2. A three by Melih Mahmutoglu gave Fenerbahce some breathing room. Oz Blayzer's block on Guduric and a three by Bryant on the halftime buzzer made it 36-35 at the break.
Ante Zizic's first basket of the game gave Maccabi the lead to start the second half, but Marko Guduric responded with a three. De Colo also struck from deep to give the hosts a 7-point advantage. Bryant countered with a pair of threes and Wilbekin made another to even the score, 46-46. After a Fenerbahce timeout, Vesely restored the hosts’ lead. Lorenzo Brown added a three-pointer and a layup in taking the lead to 7, again. After a three-pointer by John DiBartolomeo, Guduric's basket-plus-foul made it 60-53 through three quarters. A three by Guduric gave Fenerbahce its first double-digit lead of the game, 67-56. Wilbekin gave Maccabi hope with a three and his next effort from downtown made it 70-66. Pierre scored the next 5 points to give the hosts a 9-point cushion with 3 and a half minutes remaining. Mahmutoglu nailed a three and Vesely a floater to put the game on ice at 80-68 with 2 minutes to go.
Jan Vesely displayed the form that made him the 2019 EuroLeague MVP with 18 points on 9-of-11 shooting, 6 rebounds and 4 assists for a performance index rating of 29. He mixed in his normal assortment of spectacular dunks with some mid0range jumpers. Vesely came up big in the fourth quarter with an assist to Melih Mahmutoglu for a key three-pointer to help kill Maccabi's hopes as well as 3 clutch defensive rebounds.
After Maccabi had closed within 4 with 4:30 to go in the fourth quarter, Dyshawn Pierre took control with a three-pointer and a basket in the paint on consecutive possessions to make it 75-66. Though Maccabi continued to fight, it was unable to get closer than 7 the rest of the way.
Even though Fenerbahce was outrebounded 24-32, it was able to control the game by shooting 72.7% on two-pointers and taking advantage of Maccabi's 16 turnovers.
Fenerbahce heads on the road to Russia for its next game on Thursday, January 28 at Khimki Moscow Region. Maccabi has more than a week off before it faces Khimki in Round 24 on February 4.
Tuesday, January 26, 2021