By Eurohoops team / firstname.lastname@example.org
Shane Larkin proved once again that he’s having a fantastic season, and Partizan Mozzart Bet felt it on its skin. With 27 points and eight assists, for a PIR of 38, he led Anadolu Efes to a 100-94 victory over Partizan in Istanbul. The Turkish side improved to 5-5, while the Belgrade team fell to 4-6.
Larkin scored 12 points in the final 10 minutes, with his two three-pointers in the last two and a half minutes being crucial for the win. The US guard helped his side pull away to 96-89, with 47 seconds on the clock, and that was it for Partizan.
“It’s a character win. There were some games this year where we didn’t fight back, but we showed great character to get a big win in front of our fans. We knew the key to this game was to be defensively aggressive”, he commented after the win.
Darius Thompson followed him with 18 points, while Will Clyburn and Ante Zizic added 12 points each. Tyrique Jones also finished in double digits with 11, while Derek Willis scored 10 points for the winning side.
“We scored a few buckets at the beginning of the fourth and the crowd got involved, the energy they gave us really helped. In the fourth quarter we really locked up, we followed the game plan”, the former Lokomotiv Kuban and Baskonia playmaker commented.
Partizan had a great opening through Frank Kaminsky, who ended up scoring a EuroLeague career-high 24 points, but the hosts clawed back quickly. With Larkin dictating the tempo, they gained control already in the second period.
Erdem Can can’t be fully satisfied considering the 94 points conceded to the Serbians. “Partizan is a great offensive system team. We went down with small mistakes but we started to become aggressive. That’s a great scoring game but we need to play defense. Shane Larkin is the leader of our team and he wanted to play”, Anadolu Efes‘ head coach shared.
The Belgrade team fought until the end; Kaminsky had great support from P.J. Dozier, who also scored a EuroLeague career-high with 21 points. However, Larkin proved to be too much for the Zeljko Obradovic side this time, and even with James Nunnally adding 16 points to the leading duo, it didn’t help.
The Serbian head coach gave his opinion following the game. “It was a really nice game for the interest of all. I don’t know for how many games in a row we’re gonna lose games because of bad decisions offensively and giving opportunities to the opponents to run and to get easy baskets. Many turnovers, those are the factors for our loss today”, he admitted in the game’s aftermath.