By Johnny Askounis/ firstname.lastname@example.org
A double-digit scoring threat similar to no other in the Basketball Champions League comes in the form of DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell. The 27-year-old forward has put up at least ten points in every single appearance. His streak is up to 25 games, including six contests in the qualifying rounds of three separate BCL seasons. The 19 in a row in the Regular Season shaped a new record in league history breaking the tie with D.J. Kennedy at 18 Tuesday evening.
“I honestly did not recognize this,” he told Eurohoops regarding his streak, “There’s no secret behind it. I’ve been placed in situations where I have to score. But working hard consistently helps.”
Tofas Bursa forced JDA Dijon to its second-biggest home defeat in the Champions League last night and in the process made a massive leap towards the Champions League playoffs field by earning the tiebreaking advantage over the French club. The Turkish outlet needs one more away win, next Tuesday against ERA Nymburk, to clinch a spot in the next round consisting of the 16 advancing teams split into four new groups. Akoon-Purcell’s 15 points and 10 rebounds in France made out his second BCL double-double.
“It was definitely a big win last night,” he mentioned, “I like our chances against Nymburk on Tuesday. I think we match up with them perfectly. We did get off to a bad start in the group but we have a rhythm now and we keep getting better.”
Tofas can also advance if Keravnos defeats Dijon in the other Group B game planned to complete the Regular Season schedule next week. A win over Nymburk would guarantee a spot in the next round regardless of the outcome at Cyprus. A huge turnaround from a 1-2 start generated by a couple of overtime losses to Dijon and Nymburk to its current strong position, on track for a playoff berth.
Coming out of Illinois State, the Trinidadian-American forward launched his pro career with the Bakken Bears. As a member of the Danish club, he led his team to a couple of domestic titles in 2017 and 2018, also started his record-breaking streak going over ten points in 14 Regular Season matches of the inaugural Champions League campaign.
His double-digit showings extended into six qualifiers, including two of the current 2020-21 season. He inked a one-month contract for his second stint with the Bears and produced 15.5 points per match helping them defeat Hapoel Tel Aviv and Belfius Mons-Hainaut to advance to the Regular Season before aiding Tofas on its 3-2 run with 17.4 points per game.
“I would love to end up in the same group,” he replied to a question on possibly matching up with his former team in the next round. The Bears need a home win over Iberostar Tenerife paired with Galatasaray defeating Dinamo Sassari to complete their own comeback path to the playoffs in a successful fashion.
Photo Credit: Basketball Champions League