Any time a new player is added to a team there is a period of adjustment. Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade has been experiencing that for much of the season but the bond within the team is starting to show that it's getting stronger.
Zvezda snapped a three-game losing streak by defeating AX Armani Exchange Milan on the road 79-87 in Round 9 on Wednesday. And Sasa Obradovic's team really played well together, with five players scoring at least 9 points, including two players who have been added after the first month of the season.
While Jordan Loyd led Zvezda in scoring with 17 points and Corey Walden had 15 points, Johnny O'Bryant collected 11 points, 4 rebounds and 2 assists. And Emanuel Terry chipped in 9 points and 7 rebounds.
The backcourt duo of Loyd and Walden have been with the team since the beginning of the season, but Terry made his debut in Round 4 and O'Bryant played his first game with Zvezda in Round 6. Both big men have excellent skillsets that can help a team win. And they don't really overlap, so Obradovic actually could play both Terry and O'Bryant together in stretches.
But the coach admitted integrating Terry and O'Bryant is only now starting to really work.
"We have some new guys we are trying to integrate. We suffered a little bit the previous games because of this. The face of the team is getting clearer every game. We are improving and I am happy with that," the coach said after the win over Milan.
Zvezda will need Terry and O'Bryant to play well if the team would like to challenge for the playoffs. And the game against Milan showed once again just how good both big men are. And now that they have found their way within the team, Zvezda has become that much tougher a team with which to deal.