William Howard caps off career-night with game-winner

2021-11-26T22:13:16+00:00 2021-11-26T23:40:16+00:00.

Giannis Askounis

26/Nov/21 22:13


Mike James suffering a late injury can leave an additional mark on AS Monaco

By Johnny Askounis/ info@eurohoops.net

Despite an extremely limited rotation, LDLC ASVEL Lyon-Villeurbanne prevailed, 85-84, against AS Monaco on Friday evening. From way downtown, William Howard banked in the game-winning buzzer-beating three-pointer.


Howard, 28, was already beyond his personal high in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague and ended up with 23 points after making the logo shot. He was assigned to inbound the ball with only two seconds left but backtracked after a Paris Lee deflection to pick up the ball and hit the game-winner from nearly 15 meters out. After reviewing the play, the referees confirmed the crazy shot counted.

“The guys made a great effort tonight,” said head coach T.J. Parker after his side snapped the three-game losing streak to improve to 7-5, “Crazy end, but when you see it, the ball leaves his hand before the shot clock is over, so it counts.”

The hosts were fresh off Mike James exiting with a left ankle injury. He was helped off the court with 23 seconds remaining in the first EuroLeague meeting between two French teams this century.

ASVEL survived the excruciating test with extremely limited options. Besides Antoine Diot, Marcos Knight, David Lighty, Raymar Morgan, Dylan Osetkowski, and Victor Wembanyama remaining out, Paul Lacombe was in action with the French national team.

Effective shooting from beyond the arc highlighted by Howard’s 5/5 triples and outrebounding La Roca Team, 37-27, were both major parts of the victory.

“I knew the shot was good at the end of the game,” noted the star of the game, “I almost lost the ball, but I fixed my mistake right after. I’m really happy because it’s a tough situation for us with all the injuries we have and the missing guys, so I’m glad we fought until the end and got the win.”

Beyond the 23 points, Howard pulled down ten rebounds. His effort also generated three steals and two assists for a 33 PIR. Charles Kahudi added 15 points. James Gist had 13 points, Elie Okobo 11 points, and Chris Jones ten points.

“The bucket counted, and as coach said, we’ll take it. We deserved it,” mentioned Jones, “We came out and fought hard defensively. We could have got a lot more stops than we did, but you know, we have a lot of room to improve.”

Facing his former team, Zvezdan Mitrovic saw his side falling to 5-7 at the buzzer. Paris Lee making nine out of team-high 20 points in the last ten minutes was not enough. James exited with 18 points. Alpha Diallo had 15 points and Donta Hall 12 points.

“I think it was an interesting game with ups and downs,” claimed the Montenegrin play-caller, “At the end, we changed the game, but in the last second was tragic for us. We had the game in our hands.”

Monaco, missing both Leo Westermann and Jerry Boutsiele, came in with a 4-1 home record in Europe’s premier club competition. Rob Gray was also inactive.

Another game on the road coming up as ASVEL is set to collide with FC Bayern Munich next Thursday. The fellow French team will visit Fenerbahce Beko the same day.