By Antigoni Zachari / firstname.lastname@example.org
The Turkish derby was the epicenter of Round 26’s action in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague and Anadolu Efes put up a feast to stop an impressive 10-game streak by Fenerbahce. Ergin Ataman’s squad establishes well into the playoffs zone for now, as the leaders of the competition remain strong in the fight.
MVP: Vasilije Micic – Anadolu Efes
Micic posted a new career-high performance with 37 points on a very special evening for Efes against their Istanbul archrivals. The Serbian guard was perfect from the three-point line in six attempts, while he also added 5 assists and 3 steals to accumulate a PIR of 44. After a negative PIR in the Round 25 game against Olympiacos, his explosiveness on the court was the greatest sign of recovery as Efes took revenge from Fener for their Round 2 loss at home.
- Wade Baldwin (FC Bayern Munich): Bayern held on for the win against Maccabi thanks to Baldwin’s huge contribution in crunch time, as he left the court with 16 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists.
- Vasilije Micic (Anadolu Efes): Our weekly MVP
- Nikola Kalinic (Valencia Basket): Valencia forced Zenit to its worst-scoring game of the season and the Serbian forward had a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds to lead his team to its third consecutive win.
- Shavon Shields (AX Armani Exchange Milan): The American/Danish forward produced 17 points and 5 rebounds to add up to Khimki’s endless woes, as Milano
- Youssoupha Fall (TD Systems Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz): The French big man had a season-high with 20 points and 6 rebounds as Baskonia enjoyed a comfortable win over Crvena Zvezda to stay in touch with the playoffs zone.
Coach of the Week: TJ Parker – LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne
The upset of the week came in the last game of the round as ASVEL stood strong in Barcelona to defeat the competition leaders while expanding its winning streak to seven games. Definitely one of the “hottest” teams at this point, ASVEL can push for a spot in the playoffs provided they keep up their good momentum as they have now improved to a 12-14 record.
New faces can impact the playoffs race
The transfers deadline expired this week and 13 of the 18 EuroLeague clubs have brought in 15 new faces with hopes to reinforce and either establish into the playoffs zone or fight their way there. Valencia and Zalgiris are currently just one win away from entering the Top 8 and no team is really safe yet. It’s a long race towards the end of the regular season and teams have added up tricks to their sleeves with hopes to stir up the standings.