By Antonis Stroggylakis / firstname.lastname@example.org
Panathinaikos won the Greek League championship title for the second season in a row after beating archrival Olympiacos 84-70 in Game 5 of the Finals and winning the series 3-2.
Mike James led the winners with 18 points, Nikos Pappas followed with 13 points, while Matt Lojeski scored 12 against his former team.
Jamel McLean led the Reds with 16 points, as Giorgos Printezis shared 12.
It was a quite intense and heated game that was also interrupted at the beginning of the second half. The Reds were ahead 31 – 35 at that point but Panathinaikos was the team to control all aspects of the game afterwards.
With the score 38 – 39, Panathinaikos pulled off consecutive defenses to gain the lead, 42 – 3. A 3-pointer by Lojeski and a basket by Chris Singleton made it 53 – 45 with 90 seconds remaining in the third period and then Mike James hit a buzzer-beating 3-pointer for the 70 – 60.
The Reds had no answer for the small ball lineup their opponents implemented with Thanasis Antetokounmpo as a “5”. At the beginning of the fourth period, Nikos Pappas struck five points in a row and then James dropped a lay-up for the 68 – 52.
When KC Rivers drained a bucket from beyond the arc for the 72 – 55 with five minutes remaining, he pretty much scored the dagger of the game, since Olympiacos was unable to recover.
Photo credit: Eurokinissi