2020-21Regular SeasonRound 6
December 01, 2020 CET: 20:45
Local time: 20:45 MEDIOLANUM FORUM

Milan's defense stifles ALBA

AX Armani Exchange Milan notched its third consecutive victory on Tuesday night with a superb defensive performance to beat ALBA Berlin 75-55 at Mediolanum Forum. The game, which was a makeup fixture from Round 6 after that game was originally postponed, saw Milan improve its record to 6-3 and dropped ALBA to 3-7. Milan, which used a 16-0 run that bridged the first and second quarters to pull away for good, held ALBA to 14 points or fewer in three of the four quarters while scoring at least 19 in three of the four quarters. Kevin Punter led all scorers with 14 points for the winners and Zach LeDay and Sergio Rodriguez added 12 apiece, with the latter also contributing 5 assists. Peyton Siva and Maodo Lo paced ALBA with 11 points each and Luke Sikma contributed 6 points, 9 rebounds and 5 assists.

The game got off to a slow start with ALBA's guards giving the visitors an early lead. Punter nailed a three from the corner to put Milan ahead. After Ben Lammers scored twice for ALBA, Jeff Brooks, making his first start of the season, evened things at 9-9 midway through the opening quarter with a triple. The Milan defense turned up the heat and forced ALBA into turnovers on three straight possessions, while LeDay and Kyle Hines fueled an 8-0 run for a 19-13 advantage after 10 minutes. Milan kept ALBA scoreless for nearly 4 minutes to start the second quarter while Milan reeled off another 8 straight points to lead 27-13. Sikma came alive for ALBA with a jumper and an assist to Maodo Lo for a layup. After a Milan timeout, Luigi Datome came off the bench and quickly blocked a shot and buried a triple for a 15-point lead. Rodriguez and Shavon Shields padded the lead, which reached 42-22 on a basket-plus-foul by Shields in the final seconds of the half.

Siva provided a spark for ALBA with a steal, assist and and-one in the first 3 minutes of the third quarter, however, Malcolm Delaney and Punter kept Milan in total control. The lead continued to grow with Punter stretching it to 25 early in the quarter and Rodriguez to 27 later. A triple by Louis Olinde made it 64-41 through three quarters. ALBA never threw in the towel and slowly chipped away at the deficit. Johannes Thiemann made it 66-48 with a bucket inside, but before long Punter put his stamp on the game with a three-pointer on one end and a block at the other as Milan wrapped up the victory.

Game-changing run

After Johannes Thiemann's steal and layup gave ALBA an 11-13 lead in the opening quarter, the visitors were held without points for the next 7 and a half minutes. Milan scored on four of its next five possessions while forcing ALBA into three straight turnovers to lead 19-13 after 10 minutes. The hosts did not cool off by scoring the first 8 points of the second quarter. Five players scored for Milan in its 16-0 run, led by Zach LeDay with 6 points, and ALBA never threatened again.

The numbers

The hosts controlled the game through defense, forcing ALBA into 17 turnovers and blocking 5 shots. Moreover, ALBA was limited to 15-for-39 shooting (38.5%) on two-pointers and 5-for24 (20.8%) on threes.

Did you notice?

Milan held a team below 60 points for the first time since March 2019, when it bested Olympiacos Piraeus 66-57. ALBA's 55 points scored marked the club’s lowest offensive output in the EuroLeague in 17 years. The club-low in the EuroLeague is 53 points in a loss to Idea Slask in November 2003.

What's next?

Both teams return to action in two days for Round 12 on Thursday, December 3. Milan hosts Panathinaikos OPAP Athens, and ALBA visits Valencia Basket.

Kevin Punter - AX Armani Exchange Milan - EB20
Tuesday, December 1, 2020
Euroleague.net
Referees: BOLTAUZER, MATEJ; PASTUSIAK, PIOTR; CORTES, CARLOS
Attendance: 0
By Quarter1234
AX Armani Exchange Milan19232211
ALBA Berlin1391914
End of Quarter1234
AX Armani Exchange Milan19426475
ALBA Berlin13224155
AX Armani Exchange Milan
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
0 PUNTER, KEVIN 20:17 14 2/4 2/2 4/4   2 2 1 1 2 1   1 4 18
2 LEDAY, ZACH 18:46 12 3/4 1/2 3/4   3 3 2   1     1 2 14
5 MICOV, VLADIMIR 19:23 5 2/4 0/2 1/2   2 2     1     2 3 2
9 MORASCHINI, RICCARDO 5:38   0/1 0/1         1             -1
10 ROLL, MICHAEL 15:52 2 1/2 0/2     1 1 1 3 1     3    
13 RODRIGUEZ, SERGIO 16:19 12 1/2 2/3 4/4   2 2 5 1 1     1 2 18
15 TARCZEWSKI, KALEB 17:42 3 1/2   1/2 3 3 6 1 2 1 1   1 2 11
23 DELANEY, MALCOLM 22:12 9 3/6 1/4     4 4 3   3     4 3 6
31 SHIELDS, SHAVON 18:05 7 1/2 1/3 2/3   3 3 2 2 1       3 12
32 BROOKS, JEFF 16:16 3 0/1 1/1     5 5 1     1   1 1 9
42 HINES, KYLE 19:28 5 1/2   3/4   3 3 1     1   1 3 10
70 DATOME, LUIGI 10:02 3   1/2     1 1     1 1   1   2
Team                                
Totals 200:00 75 15/30 9/22 18/23 3 29 32 18 9 12 5 0 16 23 101
        50% 40.9% 78.3%
Head coach: MESSINA, ETTORE
Min: Minutes played; Pts: Points; 2FG M-A: 2-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); 3FG M-A: 3-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); FT M-A: Free Throws (Made-Attempted); Rebounds: O (Offensive), D (Defensive), T (Total); As: Assists; St: Steals; To: Turnovers; Bl: Blocks (Fv: In Favor / Ag: Against); Fouls: Cm (Commited), Rv (Received); PIR: Performance Index Rating
ALBA Berlin
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
0 LO, MAODO 16:19 11 4/6 1/3     1 1   1     1 1   7
3 SIVA, PEYTON 25:34 11 1/7 1/5 6/7       3 3 4   2 2 7 5
5 GIFFEY, NIELS 25:36 2 1/4 0/3     4 4 2 1 3   1 3 2 -2
6 DELOW, MALTE 13:24 2 1/1 0/1   1 1 2           2   1
9 MATTISSECK, JONAS 14:05 3   1/4     2 2     1     3 1 -1
10 SCHNEIDER, TIM 5:39 2 1/2 0/1   1   1           2   -1
16 NIKIC, KRESIMIR DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
19 OLINDE, LOUIS 22:44 8 1/6 2/5   4 3 7     1   1 3   2
32 THIEMANN, JOHANNES 24:17 6 3/5   0/2 2 3 5   2 1     1 1 8
33 GRANGER, JAYSON 16:05   0/1 0/2   1 2 3 1 1 2          
43 SIKMA, LUKE 25:55 6 1/2   4/4 3 6 9 5   5     3 5 16
50 LAMMERS, BEN 10:22 4 2/5       1 1 1         3    
Team           2 4 6     2         4
Totals 200:00 55 15/39 5/24 10/13 14 27 41 12 8 19 0 5 23 16 39
        38.5% 20.8% 76.9%
Head coach: GARCIA RENESES, AITO

Head Coaches

MESSINA, ETTORE
AX Armani Exchange Milan
"I think it’s very important [to play consistently] because probably the second half was not so, let’s say, exciting like the first half, but we kept the lead and that allowed me to rotate all the players. And when you can cut the minutes of the players, especially now when we are going to play two games a week probably for two months, it’s a huge key. So I’m very happy for that. It’s a good win. They’re a good, aggressive and athletic team, they were missing also a couple of key players. So it’s a good win and now we start preparing for Panathinaikos."

Players

RODRIGUEZ, SERGIO
AX Armani Exchange Milan
"We are getting better, especially on defense. We have a lot of talent on offense, but if we are able to play defense the way that we played defense today, we’re going to have a lot of chances. I’m feeling very comfortable with the team, the way that we are playing, the energy that we put every day on the floor is very important."
PUNTER, KEVIN
AX Armani Exchange Milan
“Coach got in us this week on defense and just moving forward, so we had to just lock in mentally even more and really focus defensively. Defense leads to a lot of our good offense, so he was on us about defense and we had to pick it up a notch. I’m confident and just trying to be aggressive as much as possible."