By Johnny Askounis/ firstname.lastname@example.org
Daniel Hackett was named Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Regular Season Round 20 MVP, Euroleague Basketball announced Thursday.
Hackett, 34, propelled CSKA Moscow to the win on the road versus Panathinaikos OPAP with 17 points, six assists, and five rebounds, all season-highs. The 26 PIR generated over Wednesday’s contest was the highest among all winners in the Round 20 games held Tuesday and Wednesday.
Per the press release: “Daniel Hackett turned in his best game of the season on Wednesday in the Greek capital to lead CSKA Moscow to a rout of Panathinaikos OPAP Athens and pick up MVP of the Round honors to boot. The 34-year-old guard shined with 17 points, 5 rebounds and 6 assists as CSKA cruised to a 74-98 victory. Hackett made 2 of 3 two-pointers, shot 4 for 6 from downtown and made his lone free throw attempt. He also blocked a shot in compiling a performance index rating of 26, which was the highest among all players on winning teams in Round 20. This marked the first time in Hackett’s decade in the EuroLeague that he has earned MVP of the Round honors. The highest PIR in Round 20 came from FC Barcelona’s Kyle Kuric in a 73-75 loss to AX Armani Exchange Milan. Kuric scored 22 points on near-perfect shooting for a PIR of 29. Next was Kostas Sloukas with a PIR of 23 for Olympiacos Piraeus in its 94-80 loss at Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul. Sloukas tallied 14 points, 5 rebounds, 7 assists and 4 steals. Rounding out Round 20’s top performers were Josh Nebo of Zalgiris Kaunas and Ognjen Jaramaz of FC Bayern Munich, with PIRs of 22 and 20, respectively.
Individual highs: Pierria Henry of Fenerbahce, 8 assists
The top scorer in Round 20 was Barcelona’s Kuric with 22 points though his teammate, MVP for October and December, Nikola Mirotic, remains the league leader with 17.9 points per game. Nebo led all players in rebounding in Round 20 with 9 boards and in doing so rose to fifth in the season-long rankings with 6.6 per game. Panathinaikos center Georgios Papagiannis tops the charts with 8.0 rebounds per game. Pierria Henry of Fenerbahce dished 8 assists, which were the most of the round. AS Monaco’s Mike James remains the league leader with 6.1 per game. Sloukas and Milan’s Ben Bentil each collected 4 steals in Round 20, which were double the next-best performances. John Brown III’s 2.7 steals per game are the most in the league by a comfortable margin. Olympiacos forward Kostas Papanikolaou and CSKA big man Joel Bolomboy were the only players with multiple blocks in Round 20. Walter Tavares has blocked 1.9 shots per game to lead the standings.”
Below are the Top 10 Plays of Round 20.
Action in Europe’s premier club competition resumes with the bottom end of the two-game week, Thursday through Friday.