Connect to share and comment

WRAPUP 1-Basketball-Carroll on song as Real down CSKA

PlacardEnlarge
(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

By Zoran Milosavljevic

BELGRADE, Feb 1 (Reuters) - The royalty of club basketball produced a thriller worthy of their trophy cabinets as eight-times Euroleague winners Real Madrid beat six-times champions CSKA Moscow 86-78 thanks to a superb show from Jaycee Carroll.

The Spanish giants remained the only unbeaten team in the second group stage of the competition, featuring 16 teams divided into two pools of eight, after the 29-year-old American point guard landed 31 points in a game that went to overtime on Thursday.

Holders Olympiakos Piraeus kept alive their hopes of reaching the playoffs with an 82-71 home win over Fenerbahce Istanbul, 2010 champions Barcelona cruised to an 85-66 home defeat of Montepaschi Siena and Anadolu Efes Istanbul sprung a 78-73 upset at Unicaja Malaga on Friday.

CSKA playmaker Milos Teodosic missed a long-range shot on the buzzer in regulation time and Carroll stepped up in overtime to settle the rip-roaring encounter in front of 14,000 fans.

"We are learning how to play different kinds of games and the good thing is we were able to change our system in this very difficult match," Carroll told the competition's official website (www.euroleague.net).

"We couldn't play fast the whole game but in overtime we were aggressive and at the same time we were clever enough to pass the ball around to create open shots."

With four teams from each of the two pools advancing to the best-of-five quarter-final playoff series, Real are in the driving seat to progress while CSKA have work to do with a 4-2 record.

Last week the Russian champions were soundly beaten by Unicaja Malaga but their trophy-laden Italian coach Ettore Messina was confident CSKA would reach the May 10-12 Final Four in London's O2 Arena and have another shot at Carroll and company.

"I hope we can get Real Madrid in the final games," he said. "We played a good game tonight but they played a very good game, the key being offensive rebounds, Carroll's performance and a great atmosphere."

TALENTED TOMIC

Barcelona improved their record to 5-1 after blowing away Montepaschi to go joint top of their section with the Italians after Croatia centre Ante Tomic showed off an arsenal of individual talents in a flowing team effort.

Tomic, who joined Barca from rivals Real during the close season, topped the scoring with 20 points after hitting nine of 12 shots from the floor while also picking up five rebounds and dishing out as many assists in the Palau Blaugrana.

Forward Xavier Rabaseda, who had not scored more than six points in any Euroleague game this season, grabbed 16 in 17 minutes on the court after making all six shots from the field including four three-pointers.

"We had a really solid game in all aspects and managed to make Montepaschi score less than they have lately so I have to give my team credit for that," said Barcelona coach Xavier Pasqual.

"Rabaseda played really well and we hope he will be more consistent because he is a very important player for us. He played his role really well and I am happy for him."

Olympiakos were skating on thin ice after losing three of their opening four games in the top 16 but a second successive victory, during which 10 of their 12 players got on the scoresheet, put the campaign of the champions back on track.

They now have three wins and as many defeats, nosing ahead of quadruple former champions Maccabi Tel Aviv who rekindled their playoff hopes with an emphatic 77-55 win at Besiktas Istanbul.

Efes have five wins out of six after Jordan Farmar led their effort at Malaga with 15 points as the Turkish side threw away a 16-point lead in the third quarter before the former Los Angeles Lakers guard showed his experience at crunch time.

Khimki Moscow also moved a step closer to the knockout stage with a surprise 83-71 win at Caja Laboral Vitoria and Panathinaikos Athens stayed on course too after a hard-earned 76-73 home triumph over win-less German outsiders Bamberg. (Editing by Tony Jimenez)

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/thomson-reuters/130201/wrapup-1-basketball-carroll-song-real-down-cska