- 13th day Classification
It was enough for Barça with a great first half of Nikola Mirotic and Malcolm Delaney's inspiration in the triples to take a hard win against Panathinaikos. The Greeks, in the hands of Nick Calathes and Jimmer Fredette, fought the unspeakable, but ended up bowing the knee before a team that, despite a brief bump in the third quarter, again showed off their best galas in attack.
The fact of having only a little more success in the shot that his rival allowed Barça to go to rest with eight points of advantage (55-47). In the first period, again, a very intoned Mirotic (12 points) shone with its own light, capable of transmitting a halo of infallibility. The Panathinaikos, however, managed to stay afloat even when things looked worse. Above all, by the hand of a Calathes who did not shy away from responsibility at any time, but also thanks to a final folly of the Barcelonaists taken advantage of by Tyrese Rice.
Panathinaikos managed to place himself at just two points as soon as the second quarter began thanks to a good triple of Calathes, but he would end up seeing how the Catalans, far from being dazed, instead managed to increase the distances again to go to rest with eight points of advantage on the scoreboard (55-47). Mirotic seemed to lift the accelerator's foot a little, just a little, but that, of course, was not an impediment for the Montenegrin Hispanic to show gallons again. He finished the first part with 17 points, thanks to a good offensive action and after forcing a Bentil staff while rehearsing the triple.
Calathes and Fredette
And if Mirotic reduced his scoring statistics a bit, compared to the first quarter, Davies, with 10 points in his bag, was in charge of appearing to be the most decisive of the Barcelona players on the parquet in the second. On the part of the visitors, meanwhile, the best feelings were still given by Calathes, very well supported in this case by Fredette. His efforts, however, would not be enough to prevent Barca from opening a serious gap to face the second half with everything in favor.
Fredette, on the other hand, would be in charge of avoiding the blow on the Barça table, adding five points and, above all, avoiding a practically made basket of the premises forcing personnel in Smits attack. The latter, precisely, would take his particular revenge by partially cutting off the reaction with a triple that placed his own with eight of advantage. Panathinaikos, superimposing everything, paddled to always narrow the differences to the fullest, however much Barca came to take 11 lead (55-44) after a triple of Kuric that amply rewarded the Indiana's struggle to maintain possession.
The Greek team even managed to get to two points (60-58) just over three and a half minutes by the end of the fourth. Again and again, he managed to get on his head, especially, controlling a Mirotic who could not feel at all comfortable. But, again and again, he also saw how his rival marked the necessary distances so as not to suffer too much stress. In this case, especially through a lethal Delaney from beyond the three-point line.
The 71-65 at the end of the third period, despite its limited strength, conveyed very good feelings for Barça. Two triples, the third from Delaney and another from Oriola, allowed the Pesic set to settle in a seemingly comfortable watchtower. Rice, however, made a great effort to abandon his secondary role once and for all. And that was essential so that Panathinaikos did not lower his arms at any time and managed to get to four points just over six minutes to go.
Delaney, inspired by the triples, would appear again to cut off his reaction attempt. And Hanga, with another launch from beyond the 6.75 line, seemed to condemn her in a definitive way. Calathes tried to get the best out of his manual to fight against an inevitable destiny and recover, in part, the prominence among his own that Fredette had taken from him, but the aim of the free throws failed when he needed it most. Delaney, on the other hand, would keep his aim intact to catapult his team to 13 points (94-81) just over two minutes to go with a new three-point throw.
Panathinaikos, of course, would fight again to narrow things. The Greek champion, however, would end up crashing against the timely resurgence of a Mirotic who knew how to return in time to ensure the worked triumph (98-86).
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