Dynamo Moscow confirmed its status as one of this season's Eurocup favorites by pounding Barons/LMT Riga 61-80 to tie fellow Russian team Unics Kazan atop of group B. Dynamo's array of offensive weapons was just too much for the Barons, who allowed the guests to shot 62% from inside the ark and got outrebounded 31-43. Bostjan Nachbar led Dynamo with 24 points, Jannero Pargo notched 14 and Sergey Monya added 11 points to go with 8 rebounds. Barons managed to stay even with Dynamo at 16-16, but the guests put up a 28-14 surge to finish the first half. Dynamo expanded the lead to 21 by the end of the third and nobody doubted the outcome during the low-scoring fourth quarter. Giedrius Gustas scored 14 points for Barons, Demetrius Alexander added 11 and Charles Rhodes chipped in with 10.
Gustas didn't get much help from his teammates at the start of the game, as he was the only Barons player to score in the first three minutes, while Monya, Pargo, Travis Hansen and Nachbar gave Dynamo a 4-12 lead. Gustas nailed a triple, before Armands Skele and Alexander finally stepped up for the hosts. Gustas added 5 points more to even the score at 16-16, but Nachbar's three-pointer sparked a 2-8 Dynamo run to make it 18-25 after the first quarter. The guests found a way to stop Gustas to start the second period with a 0-9 run, as Monya scored 5 points with a triple and a dunk. With the scoreboard showing 18-34, Barons head coach Karlis Muiznieks had to call a timeout. Dainius Adomaitis and Kaspars Berzins hit two straight from downtown to help the hosts get closer, but Dynamo scored the next 9 points thanks to a balanced inside-outside offence. Charles Rhodes, Gustas and Alexander managed to cut the 19-point Dynamo lead down to 30-44 at the halftime.
Berzins nailed two triples to start the second half, while Dynamo matched his 6 points with baskets by Monya, Hansen and Pargo, whose drives troubled the hosts for most of the third quarter. Barons had no plans of giving up, and their aggressive attitude was rewarded with multiple free throw opportunities. Rhodes scored his third and fourth free throw of the period to make it 47-63, but Nachbar was just too much to handle for the hosts, and after Monya dunked off a Hansen miss, Dynamo broke the 20-point margin at 49-70 with 10 minutes to go. With the game's outcome decided, last quarter tuned out to be a low-scoring one, though Nachbar never stopped torturing the hosts. Meanwhile, Alexander kept pushing for Barons with 5 points in the quarter before seating down on the bench after he reached double figures. Sergey Bykov scored 5 in a row for Dynamo to put the guests back at 20+, before Corey Smith hit a last three-pointer for the hosts to lessen the defeat, as Dynamo players could celebrate a successful Eurocup opener.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008