We come off another Turkish Airlines EuroLeague round full of excitement, some surprises and great basketball all around. Perhaps the results that few people saw coming was LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne downing reigning champions CSKA Moscow in a thriller. Well, ASVEL is undefeated at home and has already beaten three teams that were in the playoffs last season, so the great atmosphere at Astroballe is definitely helping the French powerhouse. There were four road winners out of Round 7's nine games, which is notable. Khimki Moscow Region used a great team effort, including 24 assists, to down Zenit in St Petersburg; Real Madrid needed an outstanding fourth quarter to beat Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade in the Serbian capital; while FC Barcelona and Anadolu Efes Istanbul won in Lithuania and Greece, respectively. Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul bounced back against FC Bayern Munich, Maccabi FOX Tel Aviv and Panathinaikos OPAP Athens each recorded comfortable home wins; and AX Armani Exchange Milan had to battle really hard to top KIROLBET Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz. Like I said, we are seeing great basketball on regular basis, and this is just Round 7. Isn't in exciting?
That means Round 8 is coming up with more big games, highlighted by CSKA vs. Fenerbahce and El Clásico, Real vs. Barcelona. As always, we have some ideas for you to make your EuroLeague Fantasy Challenge team even more competitive. Here are our five suggestions for this week.
Jordan Loyd, Valencia Basket (1.02 million) – Last week, he shattered Valencia's PIR club record, 41, on the road against Panathinaikos. He has been up and down, but with three consecutive games coming up, we believe it will be a very good idea to pick up Loyd, a good scorer with a very reasonable value.
Cory Higgins, FC Barcelona (1.79 million) – Last week, Higgins had a PIR of 33 against Zalgiris and went on to hit 8 three-pointers in a Spanish League game last weekend. He hit 13-of-16 three-point shots combined - in less than 48 hours! - and his first EuroLeague clásico is coming. Good timing!
Lorenzo Brown, Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade (1.22 million) – Brown had a slow start to the season, averaging 5.5 points and a PIR of 3.7 in Zvezda's first four games. Since then, he has averaged 14 points and a PIR of 20. Clearly on his way up, getting better and better.
Vladimir Lucic, FC Bayern Munich (1.70 million) – Playing against your former team is always a two-sided weapon: you can be extra motivated or overly pressured. Lucic has been playing well and comes off a big game against Fenerbahce. We think he will be solid against Valencia.
Devin Booker, Khimki Moscow Region (2.05 million) – His role has gotten bigger with each game. Booker has a PIR average of 18 in the last six games and he played great last week against Zenit: 20 points, 7 rebounds and a PIR of 24. He'll be hyped for a big home game with AX Armani Exchange Milan.