Rodriguez's career night lifts Milan past Real
AX Armani Exchange Milan stayed undefeated at home by downing Real Madrid 78-70 at Mediolanum Forum on Friday. Milan improved to 3-1 and broke a 14-game losing streak against Real, which dropped to 1-3. Sergio Rodriguez led the winners with 25 points, and Shavon Shields added 19. Trey Thompkins led Real with 15 points. Alberto Abalde scored 14, while Usman Garuba pulled down 11 rebounds for the guests. Real led by double digits at half-time and later used a 0-8 run to get within 66-65 in the final quarter, but Shields and Riccardo Moraschini both struck from downtown in crunch time, allowing Milan to successfully defend its home court.
Carlos Alocen got Real going with a mid-range jumper and Abalde added a three-pointer. Kyle Hines stepped up with a jumper and Malcolm Delaney followed that with a driving layup, but Abalde struck twice from downtown for a 4-11 Real lead. Rodriguez downed a stop-and-pop jumper and fed Moraschini for a dunk, but Thompkins downed back-to-back triples before a buzzer-beating layup by Kaleb Tarczewski fixed the score at 10-19 after 10 minutes. Sergio Llull followed a corner triple with a layup but Tarczewski dunked twice and Luigi Datome scored down low to make it 18-24. Thompkins buried a turnaround jumper and Walter Tavares added an alley-oop slam, before Jeffery Taylor improved Rodriguez's layup with a triple. Shields downed a jumper but Thompkins and Taylor got help from Nico Laprovittola to make the hosts call timeout at 24-38. Datome and Shields tried to change things for Milan and Rodriguez buried one from way downtown to bring Milan closer, 31-42, at halftime. Hines scored down low right after the break, Shields nailed a triple and Rodriguez capped a 7-0 run with a reverse layup, before Facu Campazzo stepped up with a jumper. Moraschini and Abalde traded baskets and Rodriguez got the hosts within 44-46. Abalde scored again but a red-hot Rodriguez struck twice from beyond the arc to complete Milan's comeback, 50-49. Taylor and Laprovittola answered from downtown but Roll and Rodriguez kept their team as close as 54-55 after 30 minutes. Shields took over with a three-point play early in the fourth quarter, before Datome buried consecutive turnaround jumpers to make it 62-55 after a 10-0 run. Thompkins scored around the basket but an unstoppable Shields boosted his team's lead to 66-57. Thompkins and Campazzo fought back with consecutive triples, then Gabriel Deck dunked for a 66-65 Real deficit, after a 0-8 run. Rodriguez and Shields quickly answered, extending Milan's lead to 71-67, and Moraschini sealed the outcome with a corner triple.
Sergio Rodriguez had to take extra responsibility against his former team after Malcolm Delaney left the game in the first quarter due to injury. He not disappoint anyone, finishing with 25 points on 4-of-5 two-pointers, 3-of-6 three-pointers and 8-of-8 free throws. He added 4 rebounds, 7 assists and 8 fouls drawn for a PIR of 37 – a new career-high!
A three-pointer by Nico Laprovittola gave Real its last lead, 52-55, late in the third quarter. Then Michael Roll beat the third quarter buzzer with a jumper and right after that, Shields got a three-point play and Luigi Datome buried identical consecutive turnaround jumpers in a 10-0 run that gave Milan the lead for good. Three minutes of good defense and excellent offense allowed Milan to shift the game's momentum.
Milan limited its turnovers to just 8 and Real had almost twice as many, 15. Milan shot much better inside the arc, hitting 22-of-45 two-point shots (48.9%). Real only made 11-of-27 two-point shots (40.7%).
Did you know?
Sergio Llull became the seventh player to reach 3,000 points in EuroLeague history. He entered the game with 2,997 points and buried a corner triple early in the second quarter to reach that milestone. Llull joins a club that already includes Vassilis Spanoulis, Juan Carlos Navarro, Georgios Printezis, Nando De Colo, Paulius Jankunas and longtime teammate Felipe Reyes.
Milan visits Zenit St Petersburg next Thursday in Round 5, and a day later, on Friday, October 23, Real plays this season’s first Clasico against FC Barcelona at Palau Blaugrana at 21:00 CET.
Friday, October 16, 2020