With 19 of its 34 weeks nearly complete, the ACB race is tightening quickly, as evidenced by three games of last night which were decided by a combined four points. (This just in: Real Madrid 62, Assignia Manresa 61, so surely BiE’ll have clips from that soon as well.) You want highlights? BallinEurope’s got your highlights right here. Under the break.
Through the course of 30 minutes, Caja Laboral Baskonia (12-7, tied for 3rd) nearly squandered victory over Unicaja Malaga (9-10, tied for 9th) begun with a 20-9 first quarter; things turned sour enough for the Basque side to give up its last five-point lead in under 41 seconds in the fourth.
As a highlight clip, ACB TV offers the last 70 seconds of gameplay, an amazing minute-plus full of quick reversals of fortune:
• First, Berni Rodriguez gets the benefit of too-slow rotation by the Unicaja defense and a wide-open lane through which to drive;
• on the next possession, David Logan fumbles leading to an aborted fast break later topped by the ill-advised beyond-three from Gerald Fitch which bounces about as high off the shot clock as permissible under ACB rules (not to mention physical laws of the universe);
• Baskonia leader Marcelinho Huertas finally takes advantage of the mismatch presenting him with Terrell McIntyre as defender that he hadn’t three trips previously to miss on a wild jumper, redeem himself with the board, back up on T-Mc to reload, and drive again for the game-winning layup;
• and Dusko Ivanovic shatters the ACB mark for transpiration in a single quarter at 1.76 liters.
Thanks to the Unicaja loss, Baloncesto Fuenlabrada (11-8, 7th place) solidified its position in the playoff zone of the ACB standings with a nail-biting home win against lowly Meridiano Alicante (6-13, 16th place). The Fuenladbrada half of the highlights are dominated by Gustavo Ayon (16 points on 8-of-9 shooting and seven rebounds) and Kristaps Valters (13 points, nine assists). Justin Doellman was fantastic for Meridiano Alicante with 27 points on 10-of-15 shooting, but his miss was the last shot for his side in the 74-73 squeaker.
Meanwhile, Zaragoza (8-11, tied for 12th) barely held home court against Gran Canaria 2014 (9-10, tied for 9th). Though Jaycee Carroll was good for 23 points on 8-of-15 shooting, like Doellman, his last-second miss sealed the game for Zaragoza.