MADRID, 8 Jan. (.) –
Real Madrid brought out their scoring arsenal this Sunday in matchday 15 of the Endesa League against Gran Canaria (105-85) to maintain the even battle for leadership with Barça, who won their league commitment on Saturday, and a Cazoo Baskonia who also added the twelfth, in the 85-79 win over Valencia Basket.
The white team was the first to get into action and it didn’t take long to respond to Barça’s victory (12-3) the day before by the head. Chus Mateo’s men continued their state of grace at the Palace, after the great victory over Maccabi on Friday, against a ‘Granca’ who conceded the maximum score for Madrid this season.
Nine local players finished in double-digit PIR, with Tavares (25 PIR on 21 points without a miss and 5 blocks) and Poirier (17 PIR) leading the inside game. The yellow resistance was broken in the second quarter and Madrid did not slow down after the break, with an overwhelming return from Tavares. Those from Las Palmas have only one victory in the last six games and continue to complicate the Cup.
Meanwhile, with a party atmosphere at the Fernando Buesa Arena, the local team scored an even match against Valencia that again stayed on the shore. As against Red Star this week and more times this season, the ‘taronja’ team did not have a final shot, which did have a stellar Markus Howard (28 points).
The American gunner nailed the final sentencing three-pointer from the corner, off the track, with 15 seconds to go. The defeat against Alba Berlin did not change the course or the dynamics of Joan Peñarroya’s team, setting the pace both in the ACB and in the Euroleague. Howard knocked down a Valencia that looks out of the Cup positions with 13 points in the last quarter, key as Kotsar.
On the other hand, in a direct duel of pursuers, Lenovo Tenerife prevailed (91-84) over Unicaja, leaving Malaga behind with the eleventh victory. Txus Vidorreta’s men made up for the last loss against UCAM Murcia thanks to a great third quarter, with 31 points. Shermadini (25 points and a PIR of 36) and Jaime Fernández (23 and 23) were the best.
Meanwhile, another crucial duel, due to cup position, was won by Surne Bilbao Basket against UCAM Murcia (99-81). Hakanson (25 points and a PIR of 32) confirmed himself as a player to keep in mind and led the victory that the Basque team worked from the beginning, also with a great Smith (20 points). Those from Bilbao thus close the ‘Top 8’, the same goal that those of Sito Alonso were looking for.
In addition, in an emergency duel in the lower zone, Casademont Zaragoza beat BAXI Manresa (65-72) to get the desired fourth victory that both teams wanted. Aday Mara and Justinian Jessup led the visitors’ comeback in Manresa.