Bayern wins thrilling opener in German finals
FC Bayern Munich edged ALBA Berlin 74-70 in a thrilling opening game in the German League finals on Sunday. Nihad Dedovic led the Bayer charge with 18 points and 6 assists, Danilo Barthel tallied 14 points and 4 steals and Petteri Koponen added 11 points on 3-of-5 three-point shooting for the winners. Peyton Siva scored 14 points in defeat for ALBA, Landry Nnoko netted 12 and Luke Sikma 10. Nnoko scored twice as ALBA surged out to a 0-11 start and the remained ahead for most of the first half. Dedovic hit a three and dished an assist in a 7-0 Bayern run late in the second quarter that briefly gave the hosts the lead, however, Derrick Walton Jr. free throws lifted ALBA to a 36-37 halftime edge. Leon Radosevic scored the first two baskets of the second half to lift Bayern, however, Walton twice found Rokas Giedraitis for three-pointers in a 0-7 ALBA run to lead 47-51 late in the third quarter, which ended at 50-51 following a Koponen triple. With the score tied 56-56, Siva knocked down back-to-back triples in a 0-8 run that gave ALBA the lead. Vladimir Lucic drained a three and added a free throw after a technical foul by Nnoko before Dedovic free throws made it 69-68 with a minute and a half to go. The lead switched hands on each of the next two possessions before Barthel free throws made it 73-70 with 8 seconds to go. ALBA turned the ball over on its final possession and Barthel sealed the win with another free throw.
Italy: Sassari evens finals at 2-2
Dinamo Banco di Sardegna Sassari evened the Italian League finals at 2-2 with a 95-88 victory over Umana Reyer Venice in Game 4 of the best-of-seven series on Sunday. Rashaun Thomas led six Sassari scorers in double figures with 19 points and 8 rebounds and Jack Cooley posted 18 and 9. Justin Carter and Dyshawn Pierre contributed 12 points each, Tyrus McGee scored 11 and Jaime Smith 10. Cooley scored 4 straight points to lift the hosts to a 15-6 edge, which became 23-16 after 10 minutes. Marco Spissu extended the margin to double figures, 31-20, early in the second quarter and the lead grew to 15 before MarQuez Haynes and Mike Bramos rallied Venice to 51-41 at halftime. Haynes then scored the first 5 points of the second half and Bruno Cerella narrowed the gap to 58-56. Sassari regained control as Thomas scored 7 in a 12-2 run that helped make it 81-65 by the end of the third quarter. Haynes led another Venice rally to get within 3 late, however, free throws by Carter and McGee ensured Sassari walked away with the victory. Haynes finished with 22 points for Venice, Austin Daye scored 16 and Mitchell Watt had 10 in defeat.