By Eurohoops Team/ firstname.lastname@example.org
Following the Basketball Champions League Final 8 Quarterfinals held at Nizhny Novgorod, Friday’s schedule brings up the Semifinals. Casademont Zaragoza faces Pinar Karsiyaka and defending champion Hereda San Pablo Burgos collides with SIG Strasbourg. Below, a few interesting facts shared regarding the contests to decide the finalists of the 2020-21 BCL season.
Casademont Zaragoza – Pinar Karsiyaka (18:00 CET)
-Zaragoza have become the second team to reach the BCL Semi-Finals in back-to-back seasons after Monaco, that pulled off this feat in 2017 and 2018.
-Karsiyaka are the second Turkish team to reach the BCL Semi-Finals. The first one were Bandirma (Banvit) who made it to the 2016-17 Final Four.
-Zaragoza have won 16 of the 17 games in which they scored 80 or more points, (that is a 94.1 percent win-loss record). On the other hand, they have lost eight of the 15 games in which they scored fewer than 80 points.
-Karsiyaka have a 4-2 record against Spanish teams in the BCL. They were 2-2 against UCAM Murcia and won both their games against RETAbet Bilbao this season.
-Zaragoza average a league-high 86.7 points per game in the Play-Offs and lead the league in pace, with 78.1 possessions per game.
-Karsiyaka made at least 10 three-pointers in each of their last two BCL games, as many times as in their previous 19 games in the competition. The Turkish team have won all four games this season in which they made 10 or more triples.
-Zaragoza’s Rodrigo San Miguel is set to play his 77th game in the BCL, becoming the player with the most appearances in the competition. He is currently tied with Linos Chrysikopoulos, with 76 games each. This will be the Spanish point guard’s fourth BCL Semi-Final (2017, 2019, 2020 & 2021) which is a league record.
-Amath M’Baye and Tony Taylor of Karsiyaka meanwhile are set to play in their second BCL Semi-Final. They were both members of the Virtus Bologna side that won the title in 2019. Zaragoza’s Dylan Ennis scored a BCL career-high 26 points in the Quarter-Final. The club record in a BCL game still belongs to Robin Benzing, who scored 32 points against JDA Dijon in January 2020.
-Karsiyaka’s Raymar Morgan came up with a BCL career-high 16 rebounds in the Quarter-Final against Nymburk, setting also a new BCL record for most rebounds by a single player in a game from the Quarter-Finals stage onwards. Morgan added 18 points to register his second double-double in the BCL.
-Fellow Karsiyaka forward Metecan Birsen had 12 points and a BCL career-high 13 rebounds in the Quarter-Final, posting his first ever double-double in the competition.
-Zaragoza’s bench players scored only 10 points in the Quarter-Final against Nizhny, which is the lowest bench contribution the Spanish team’s bench has ever made in a BCL game. The previous was 15 points.
-Sek Henry made a BCL career-high five triples in the Quarter-Final and scored 19 points, which is his personal best with Karsiyaka in the BCL.
Hereda San Pablo Burgos – SIG Strasbourg (20:30 CET)
-Burgos have become the third team to reach back-to-back Semi-Finals, following in the footsteps of Monaco and Casademont Zaragoza. They had eliminated an Israeli team in the Quarter-Finals also the first time around, when they defeated Hapoel Jerusalem 92-65 in the Athens Final 8.
-Strasbourg are the third French team to reach the BCL Semi-Finals, following in the footsteps of Monaco, who made it in both 2017 and 2018 and of JDA Dijon played in the 2020 Semi-Finals, last October.
-Burgos have lost two of their previous three games against French teams, but their sole win was in last year’s Semi-Finals against JDA Dijon.
-Strasbourg are riding a four-game winning streak in the BCL and, if they win this Semi-Final, it will become their longest in the competition. This will be Strasbourg’s 76th BCL game and they will tie ERA Nymburk for third place on the list of clubs with most games played in the competition. AEK and Lenovo Tenerife share top spot with 87 each.
-Burgos give up a league-best (lowest) 1.03 point per possession, and hold opponents to an stunningly low field goal percentage of 41.8 percent, which is also the best in the league.
-Strasbourg scored 90 or more points in four BCL games this season, as many times as in their previous four seasons combined. They are averaging 82.4 points per game, making them the second-best French scoring team in competition history, behind the 2017-18 Monaco side that averaged 85.3 points per game.
-Burgos dished out 25 assists against Holon, tying their record in a BCL postseason game which, interestingly, they had set in last season’s Quarter-Final, against Hapoel Jerusalem.
-The Quarter-Final against Lenovo Tenerife was Strasbourg’s seventh overtime game in the BCL, a competition record. The French team have now won five of those overtime clashes.
–Alex Renfroe of Burgos had 14 points and 10 assists in the Quarter-Final, posting his first ever double-double in the BCL. He is now the fifth-leading assist man in the BCL postseason, with 61 career assists in this stage.
-Strasbourg’s Brandon Jefferson, who had 22 points in the Quarter-Final, scored 20 or more points in two of his last three BCL games, as many times as over his first 10 games in the competition.
-This will be Burgos captain Vítor Benite’s third Semi-Final appearance and he averaged 22 points over the previous two (19 points in 2018 with UCAM Murcia and 25 points in 2020 with Burgos), which is the highest scoring average for a player in the BCL Semi-Finals stage. Benite had 26 points in the Quarter-Final against Holon, posting his second-highest scoring game in the competition. He scored a BCL career-high 30 points in the Round of 16 against Dinamo Sassari last season.
-Strasbourg’s Ishmail Wainright tied his BCL career-high of 19 points in the Quarter-Final. He had also 19 against Anwil Wloclawek in December 2019, when he was playing for RASTA Vechta.
-Ken Horton of Burgos posted his only BCL double-double so far in last season’s Semi-Final, when he had 19 points and 10 rebounds against Dijon. This is also the only time a player has come off the bench and posted a double-double in a BCL game from the Semi-Finals onwards.
-Strasbourg’s Bonzie Colson, who had 8 points in the Quarter-Final against Tenerife, has never had back-to-back BCL games scoring in single digits. Colson and Karsiyaka’s Raymar Morgan are the only players to average at least 18 points and 6 rebounds per game this season.
Photo Credit: Basketball Champions League