Real wins drama against Baskonia
Real Madrid used some good fortune to pull out a dramatic 70-69 win over visiting KIROLBET Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz on Tuesday night. Real took its record to 17-6, which is second-best in the league, while Baskonia dropped to 8-15 with its sixth consecutive road loss. A margin of 6 points was the largest of the night for each team. In such a close affair, it came down to the final seconds. With Real up 69-67, Shavon Shields took it to the rim and scored with 4.3 seconds to go, seemingly sending the game into overtime. However, as the hosts quickly inbounded the ball, Baskonia's Nik Stuaskas mistakenly fouled Facundo Campazzo despite Baskonia already in the bonus. Campazzo made his first and purposely missed his second free throw with 2.9 seconds on the clock and Real prevailed. Trey Thompkins led Real with 20 points and 6 rebounds. Campazzo finished with 10 points and 11 assists and Gabriel Deck also scored 10 points in the victory. Shields had 14 points for Baskonia, Tornike Shengelia finished with 12 and Matt Janning netted 11 in a losing effort.
Anthony Randolph and Jeffery Taylor scored Real's first 9 points, but Janning answered with back-to-back threes to keep Baskonia within 11-10. Fabien Causeur hit from long range for the hosts, but Baskonia did not allow a single basket in 4 and a half minutes to finish the quarter. Fueled by Shengelia on both ends of the floor and a triple from Zoran Dragic, the visitors led 14-19 after 10 minutes. Thompkins opened the second quarter with a shot from downtown and traded triples with Sergi Garcia to help cut the deficit to 24-26. The visitors remained in front as Shields and Janning each hit a three-pointer to make it 32-38, but Campazzo nailed a three-pointer to get Real within 37-38 at halftime.
The hosts stepped it up on defense after the break, while offensively Campazzo fed Tavares twice inside and Taylor and Deck eased to fastbreak baskets for Real to open a 49-44 lead. After Dragic's triple helped tie the game late in the third, Causeur's runner opened a 55-49 advantage early in the fourth. But, Shields had a three-point play and Semaj Christon scored 6 points to restore a Baskonia lead, 57-60. Thompkins pulled the teams even as the contest turned into a defensive affair and Campazzo's floater high off the glass is what had the hosts up 66-65 going into the final minute during which Real pulled down 3 offensive rebounds. Thompkins scored a layup, but split free throws to make it 69-67 with 10.8 seconds left. Baskonia quickly answered, with Shields scoring an open driving layup, but Stauskas sent Campazzo to the free-throw line for Real to secure victory.
Difference on offensive glass
Real finished with a 16-7 advantage on the offensive glass. The difference was especially evident near the end of the game when Real held possession for 66 seconds thanks to 3 consecutive offensive rebounds - possessions with 1:22 on the clock, and Trey Thompkins scored a layup to make it 68-65 with 15.9 seconds to go.
Overcoming shooting woes
Real had a season-low 23.1% three-point shooting, hitting just 6 of 26 triples, its second-fewest amount of triples made this season. That includes Sergio Llull and Rudy Fernandez, who rank fourth and fifth in threes made all-time, shooting a combined 0 for 9 from downtown for the night. But Real overcame it with offensive rebounding and by taking care of the ball; Real had 14 assists and 11 turnovers, compared to Baskonia's 11 assists and 19 turnovers.
Recently-signed forward Zoran Dragic played his first EuroLeague game in a Baskonia uniform. A veteran of 105 appearances coming into this game, Dragic last played in the competition two years ago with Anadolu Efes Istanbul. He finished this game with 9 points and 3 rebounds.
Both teams will be back in action in 48 hours again. Real travels to the German capital to face ALBA Berlin, while Baskonia will be at home hosting LDLC ASVELL Villeurbanne.
Tuesday, February 4, 2020