Spain’s ACB tipped off action last night, opening the season with Asefa Estudiantes hosting Real Madrid in front of 13,000 at Palacio De Deportes Comunidad De Madrid. The Euroleaguers emerged in “la mejor forma posible,” 84-79, after facing a knotted-up first quarter and a surprising five-point first-half deficit.
Looking for redemption after a 34-point blowout loss to FC Barcelona in the Spanish Super Cup, Real Madrid was back in form last night, even if they couldn’t stop Los Estudiantes’ outside shooting in the first half.
Carlos Suarez led the way for Real with 21 points on 6-of-9 overall shooting, adding five rebounds and three assists. D’or Fischer led the boards with eight, and Felipe Reyes put in 14 for Madrid on 5-of-7 shooting.
For Asefa, five players scored in double figures, led by Germán Gabriel’s 16 points and Jiri Welsch’s 12. Josh Asselin led all rebounders with nine.
Highlights from the game (including some bizarre stuff from the slightly surreal opening ceremonies) follow. A single game – DKV Joventut at Cajasol – will be played tonight, and Sunday sees a full slate of ACB games on tap. As always, BallinEurope highly recommends the online “ACB 360” service allowing you to watch games for free; however, it appears as though said service will not be available after November 1.
Finally, here’s Ettore Messina in the post-game presser; according to the ‘Tube, Messina explains that “Carlos Suárez showed a coolness that makes us expect great things from him.”
Color commentary goes on to comment: “Satisfied with the result and with the efforts of his players, but believing that with the passage of time and hard work, this team can still give much more: So appeared Ettore Messina before the media minutes after Real Madrid’s victory against Asefa Estudiantes. The Italian coach said, ‘we have had the ability to turn the game around a bad second quarter.’”