On this date in 2016, Lokomotiv Kuban Krasnodar held on for an overtime victory over FC Barcelona Lassa in Game 4 of their best-of-five playoff series, which would set up a deciding fifth game in Russia the following week.
In just its second season in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague, Lokomotiv reached the playoffs for the first time. Barcelona was on a run of 11 consecutive seasons with a playoff appearance, during which it had advanced to the Final Four six times. Lokomotiv's roster featured a young hungry core that finished second in Top 16 Group E with a 9-5 record. Barcelona was third in Group F at 8-6. Anthony Randolph's 17 points and 10 rebounds led Lokomotiv to a 66-61 victory in Game 1 before Barcelona stole homecourt advantage in 66-92 rout in Game 2 in which Juan Carlos Navarro scored 18 and Tomas Satoransky and Ante Tomic posted double-doubles. After Alex Abrines scored a career-high 25 points in an 82-70 Game 3 win, Barcelona had a 2-1 series lead and a could advance to the Final Four with a victory at home in Game 4.
Randolph, Claver keep Lokomotiv alive
Lokomotiv led from the start before back-to-back three-pointers by Justin Doellman and Abrines to start the second quarter put Barcelona up 25-21. It was not the breakthrough the hosts were hoping for as Chris Singleton ignited a 0-7 Lokomotiv run and the visitors went into halftime ahead 35-40. The lead reached 7 in the third quarter before Abrines scored twice in a 9-0 Barcelona run that gave the hosts a 54-51 edge entering the fourth. Singleton and Malcolm Delaney turned the tables on Barcelona by teaming up for all the points in a 0-9 run early in the fourth that made it 60-65. Delaney free throws made it 68-73 with 1:41 to play in regulation, however, 4 free throws by Tomic and 4 points by Navarro in the final 15 seconds allowed Barcelona to close the gap and tie the score at 76-76. Delaney missed a jumper to win it at the buzzer and the game went to overtime. Then Randolph took control with 10 points in the extra session -outscoring all of Barcelona by himself – to capture an 80-92 victory and force Game 5 back in Krasnodar.
Game 4 by the numbers
Randolph finished the game with a career-high 28 points plus 7 rebounds to lead Lokomotiv. Victor Claver posted 17 points and 10 boards and together with Delaney's 15 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists were main reasons Lokomotiv outrebounded Barcelona 32-43. Chris Singleton added 14 points for the winners, who combined to make 16 of 17 free throws (94.1%). Navarro paced Barcelona's attack with 19 points and Tomic scored 18. Barcelona struggled with its three-point shooting, making just 6 of 22 (21.4%). Navarro made only 2 of his 9 three-point tries.
What happened next
Delaney and Singleton dominated Game 5 to lead Lokomotiv to an 81-67 victory and a ticket to the Final Four in Berlin. Delaney went for 17 points and 6 assists and Singleton posted his first EuroLeague double-double with 16 points and 12 boards to make Lokomotiv history. Lokomotiv put up a fight in the semifinal before falling 88-81 to eventual champion CSKA Moscow. Delaney and Ryan Broekhoff scored 21 points apiece to lead the team to a 75-85 victory over Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz in the third-place game and Lokomotiv has not played in the EuroLeague since.