Kendrick Perry for the win, Malaga dethrones Barcelona

2023-02-16T23:44:01+00:00 2023-02-17T04:37:39+00:00.

Antonis Stroggylakis

16/Feb/23 23:44

Unicaja Malaga pulled off a huge upset against Barcelona courtesy of Kendrick Perry and Dario Brizuela.

By Eurohoops team/

Kendrick Perry hit the winning floater with nine seconds left in overtime and Unicaja Malaga beat Copa del Rey defending champion Barcelona 89 – 87 in the quarterfinals.

After Perry’s bucket, Nicolas Laprovittola drove to the basket and won a shooting foul with the ball barely slipping out of the rim after his attempt. The Argentinian guard, who had drained the triple for the 87  -87, still had a chance to force a second extra period but went 1-2 from the line. Barcelona exited this year’s Copa del Rey early after winning the tournament in 2021 and 2022.

Perry finished with 22 points and six assists while Dario Brizuela had a superb performance of his own with 27 points. The latter scored 13 of his points in the fourth quarter and overtime while hitting the two free throws that tied the score at 76 with 27 seconds left in regulation.

Cory Higgins then missed in a jumper from mid-range and Brizuela’s 3-pointer from beyond half-court went out. Malaga went up 81 – 85 two minutes into overtime but Barcelona tied the score before Perry’s decisive basket.

After the game an emotional Brizuela revealed that last week his son was rushed to the hospital, he is now out of danger, but the emotional burden was huge.

Nikola Mirotic led Barcelona with 15 points and nine rebounds while Laprovittola had 12 points, 10 of them in the game’s last 15 minutes. Their team was up 72 – 65 with 2:35 remaining but Malaga made a 2 – 9 run and tied the score at 74 courtesy of a triple by Dylan Osetkowski.

“It is clear, as a coach, that the responsibility is all mine,” said Barcelona coach Sarunas Jasikevicius. “I have not been able to get the players to understand that this was a final.”

Earlier in the day, Real Madrid got the win and qualified for the semifinals by beating Valencia.