Janning’s buzzer-beater lifts Anadolu Efes over Madrid
Matt Janning dominated the second half to extend his team’s Turkish Airlines Euroleague season for at least two more days. His buzzer-beating three-pointer was the difference as Anadolu Efes edged Real Madrid 75-72 Tuesday at Abdi Ipekci Arena in Game 3 of their best-of-five series. Efes closed within 2-1 and hosts Game 4 on Thursday. Janning scored 13 third-quarter points and then drilled a three to open the fourth quarter for a 59-46 advantage. Reigning Euroleague MVP Sergio Rodriguez led Madrid back with 8 straight points and Jaycee Carroll completed the comeback with a three to tie it at 72-72 with 7.5 seconds remaining. But that left just enough time for Janning to make the game-winner. Janning, who scored 2 points in the first half, finished with a career-high 21 on 5-of-7 three-point shooting. Nenad Krstic added 17 points and Dario Saric collected 15 rebounds for the winners. Rodriguez led the Madrid attack with 17 points, Sergio Llull added 15 points and 5 assists and Rudy Fernandez scored 12 in defeat for Madrid, which still has two more tries to reach its third consecutive Final Four.
First quarter: Rudy, Llull help Madrid start strong
Both teams tweaked their starting lineups with Jaycee Carroll starting for Madrid for the first time in the series and Birkan Batuk starting for Efes for the first time all season. It paid off immediately for the hosts as Batuk drove for the game’s first points. Felipe Reyes got Madrid on the scoreboard. Lasme scored on the offensive glass, but a Rudy triple gave Madrid a 4-5 advantage. Gustavo Ayon and Saric traded baskets before a second three by Rudy made it 6-10. Efes made early subs with Thomas Heurtel and Krstic coming off the bench and hooking up for a bucket. Madrid reserve K.C. Rivers hit a jumper at the other end. Heurtel got a fortunate bounce on a triple to make it a 1-point game. After Batuk missed a fast break layup, Llull punished the hosts with a three. He then scorched the Efes defense for a layup. Ayon added a short jumper for an 11-19 lead. Cedi Osman came in and scored a tough layup in transition. Llull split free throws, but Heurtel fed Krstic for a slam to end the quarter at 15-20.
Second quarter: Osman, Saric lift Efes in front
Rodriguez came in and scored his first basket. Efes was within 2 after a Stratos Perperoglou triple and a Janning jumper. Andres Nocioni got inside for a hook shot, but after Krstic’s up-and-under move, it was 22-24. Rudy’s length-of-the-court assist to Nocioni made it 22-26 midway through the quarter. A Krstic slam and foul brought Efes within 1. Saric put Efes in front with a three-pointer. Rudy tied the game with free throws, but Osman scored for Efes right away. Osman provided another highlight with a chase-down block of Rodriguez, which started a break that Saric finished with a layup. Llull attacked the rim, drew a foul and sank 2 free throws to close the gap to 32-30 at the break.
Third quarter: Janning’s 13 points help Efes pad its cushion
Rudy scored to tie the game once again and a three by Carroll put the visitors ahead. Heurtel sank 3 free throws for a 36-35 lead. Krstic added a long jumper before a Janning three gave Efes a 6-point cushion midway through the quarter. After a timeout, Llull halved the Madrid deficit with a shot from downtown. Osman responded with a three from the corner, but committed a blocking violation at the other end, which Nocioni turned into a three-point play. Janning scored in transition to make it 46-41. Ayon muscled his way to a bucket only to see the suddenly red-hit Janning score again. Carroll and Janning traded threes before Lasme scored inside and Janning ended the quarter with a step-back three to further extend the Efes advantage to 56-46.
Fourth quarter: Three at the buzzer decides outcome
Janning picked up where he left off with another three two minutes into the quarter. Rodriguez connected on a three from the top of the key and then added a tough basket. Madrid forced a steal, which Rodriguez turned into a layup-plus-foul to make it 8 straight individual points. Heurtel drained a big three to the delight of the crowd. Reyes banked in a shot to make it 62-56 with five minutes to go. Rodriguez knocked down another three to silence the arena. Saric found Krstic for a dunk, but the red-hot Rodriguez hit a jumper at the other end. Marcus Slaughter fouled out and Reyes was called for an unsportsmanlike foul. Krstic made 2 free throws for a 66-61 advantage with less than three minutes remaining. Krstic added another jumper, but Rodriguez and Llull made it a 3-point game with a minute to go. Llull drove for a layup with 27 seconds remaining that cut the difference to 68-67. The free throw game began; Dontaye Draper netted 2 as did Rudy with 16.3 seconds remaining. Perperoglou hit 2 with 10.6 seconds showing. After a Madrid timeout, Carroll tied it with 7.5 seconds to go, but Efes raced down the floor and Draper found Janning for a three at the buzzer to set off celebrations in Istanbul.
Tuesday, April 21, 2015