By Eurohoops team / email@example.com
Vasilije Micic poured in 23 points on a milestone night (2,500 EuroLeague career points) to lead the way for Efes and won his second, back-to-back final MVP honour, awarded to him by EuroLeague Legend Vassilis Spanoulis!
— Turkish Airlines EuroLeague (@EuroLeague) May 21, 2022
Tibor Pleiss scored 19 and Shane Larkin added 10, making up 52 of Efes‘ total 58 points, in the lowest-scoring EuroLeague final of the modern era.
After an intense battle for 37 minutes, Micic called game with decisive shots and Efes‘ team effort paid off in defending their rivals to be crowned champions!
Real’s lead crashes in crunchtime
Walter Tavares stepped up early on to score 12 points in the first quarter and put his team up by one point (15-14). Respective runs by both teams contributed to a close game early in the second period, before Vincent Poirier and Anthony Randolph gave Real a five-point advantage before heading to the lockers at halftime (34-29).
The Spanish side remained in control in the second half, forcing Efes to back-to-back turnovers to build a nine-point lead by the middle of the third quarter (40-31). The reigning champions fought back to trim the deficit to two points, but tension sparked between James Anderson and Vincent Poirier, resulting in two respective unsportsmanlike foul calls.
Efes rolled with a 5-0 lead early in the fourth, setting the mood for their return to the game, which ended in the best way possible for Ergin Ataman’s squad.
On the opposing end, Walter Tavares was the only player of Real in double figures, scoring 14 points along with 11 rebounds. Llull tapped 9 points, as the team couldn’t complete its return to the pinnacle of Europe in the end.
Photo credit: G. Matthaios / Eurokinissi