By Eurohoops Team/ firstname.lastname@example.org
Bidding farewell to Mantas Kalnietis was certainly the main attraction for Zalgiris but managing to say goodbye with a win in Zalgirio Arena was not meant to be.
CBet stunned the Kaunas outfit, 80-76, Sunday.
Kalnietis, 36, started and lasted 20 minutes on the court. He tallied five points, three assists, and one rebound in the Betsafe LKL Regular Season fixture.
The Kaunas-born point guard reunited with his hometown club for a third stint before the 2021-22 season. However, dealing with injuries limited his appearances. Spending the top half of the 2015-16 season and the early chunk of his career respectively shaped the other two spells. Competing abroad, Lokomotiv Kuban, LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne, and EA7 Emporio Armani were his remaining stops.
Isaiah Taylor (hamstring), Keenan Evans (Achilles), and Tyler Cavanaugh (back) are all out as the team coached by Kazys Maksvytis was forced down to 15-2. Despite storming back from an early double-digit deficit, Zalgiris trailed for most of the fourth quarter. Consequently, the leading margin over second-placed Rytas was reduced to 2.5 games. Wolves jumped to 12-5 later Sunday and Uniclub Casino-Juventus at 11-5 currently sits fourth in the standings of Lithuania’s top division.
Mantas Kalnietis calling it a day after three medals with the Lithuanian NT and a EuroCup pic.twitter.com/rG8eE3ZVPM
— Eurohoops (@Eurohoopsnet) January 29, 2023
The team based in Jonava improved to 10-6. Nebraska product Glynn Watson Jr. paved the way for the upset with 19 points. Dovis Bickauskis followed with 14 points. Jeff Garrett added ten more points.
At the losing end, Rolands Smits logged a team-high 16 points. Captain Edgaras Ulanovas had 14 points. Making all his six field-goal shots, Laurynas Birutis scored 13 points.
Photo Credit: BC Zalgiris Kaunas Twitter