2018-19Regular SeasonRound 16
January 04, 2019 CET: 20:00

Milutinov, Olympiacos rule one-sided Greek derby

Olympiacos Piraeus got back to winning ways and a perfect start to the new year with a resounding 79-65 win over the arch-rival Panathinaikos OPAP Athens at Peace and Friendship Stadium on Friday. Olympiacos took control from the start, opened a double-digit margin in the second quarter and never again allowed Panathinaikos to get as close single digits again. The Reds improved to 10-6 for a share of fourth place the standings. Nikola Milutinov led in victory with a career-best performance of 18 points and 18 rebounds – and Olympiacos club record. Janis Strelnieks also netted 18 in victory. Nick Calathes finished as the visitors’ top performer with 13 points and 7 assists, and Lukas Lekavicius scored 10 for Panathinaikos, which dropped to 7-9 record and a share of ninth place.

Georgios Printezis was a facilitator and Milutinov a beast inside in the early going. Milutinov scored half of the points as the hosts opened a 16-8 lead. Panathinaikos big man Konstantinos Mitoglou answered with a triple and added a put-back as the Greens drew within 16-14 at the end of the first quarter. Back-to-back triples from Strelnieks and Axel Toupane restored a 24-16 Olympiacos advantage early in the second quarter. Lekavicius replied with a three as baskets were coming few and far between. Soon, Olympiacos scored consecutive fastbreak buckets, including a transition triple from Strelnieks, to surge ahead 33-21. Nigel Williams-Goss also hit a three-pointer and Milutinov beat the halftime buzzer with a tip-in to make it 41-25 at the break. The Reds remained in control in the third quarter, using triples from Kostas Papanikolaou and Strelnieks to extend the margin to 49-29. Thanasis Antetokounmpo his from downtown for the visitors, but Vassilis Spanoulis bettered it with a triple-plus-free throw that opened 59-38 with 6 seconds to go in the third quarter. DeShaun Thomas beat the third-quarter buzzer with a jumperand Lekavicius had a floater and a three-pointer that cut the difference to 61-47 with 7 minutes left to play. A triple from Calathes trimmed it further, to 65-52, but Printezis had a dunk, Milutinov did more work inside, and Papanikolaou nailed a three-pointer that made it 73-52 and sealed the deal.

Pivotal performer

Nikola Milutinov dominated from the start. He scored 8 of the first 14 points for Olympiacos. He had a double-double of 12 points and 10 rebounds by halftime. He was a monster under the Panathinaikos basket, pulling down 5 offensive boards and drawing 11 fouls during his 30 minutes on the floor.

Papanikolaou, Printezis come up big

Milutinov was one of three Olympiacos players who played at least 30 minutes, and the other two had big all-round games. Kostas Papanikolaou had 12 points, 5 rebounds, 4 steals, 3 assists and a block, while Georgios Printezis contributed with 11 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists and a block.

Stellar stat, coached by Blatt

Milutinov set Olympiacos EuroLeague record by pulling down 18 rebounds, and became the first player in almost two years to pull down 18 rebounds in the competition. The last man to have done so was Ante Zizic, playing for Darussafaka Istanbul, also coached by David Blatt.

Unusual outcome

This was 11th Greek derby in the EuroLeague this century and the first time that both games in one season finished with double-digit outcomes. Panathinaikos had defeated Olympiacos 93-80 in Round 6. The 65 points scored by the Greens is tied for the fewest that Olympiacos has allowed against Panathinaikos this century.

Next game

In Round 17 on Tuesday, Olympiacos will hosts KIROLBET Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz, and a day later Panathinaikos will welcome FC Bayern Munich to Athens.

Nikola Milutinov 3- Olympiacos Piraeus - EB18
Friday, January 4, 2019
Attendance: 11107
By Quarter1234
Olympiacos Piraeus16251820
Panathinaikos OPAP Athens14111525
End of Quarter1234
Olympiacos Piraeus16415979
Panathinaikos OPAP Athens14254065
Olympiacos Piraeus
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
3 WILLIAMS-GOSS, NIGEL 21:30 7 1/2 1/3 2/2 1   1 5   2     2 1 7
6 TOUPANE, AXEL 9:51 5   1/3 2/2   1 1     1     1 1 3
7 SPANOULIS, VASSILIS 17:57 6 1/3 1/4 1/3       2   1     3 3  
10 TIMMA, JANIS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
11 MILUTINOV, NIKOLA 30:00 18 5/8   8/10 5 13 18 1   1   1   11 41
13 STRELNIEKS, JANIS 24:00 18 1/4 4/5 4/5   3 3 2 2 2 1 1 4 2 16
14 VEZENKOV, SASHA 9:48 2 1/1 0/2     1 1       1     1 3
15 PRINTEZIS, GEORGIOS 30:12 11 5/8   1/2 4 1 5 4   1 1   2 3 17
16 PAPANIKOLAOU, KOSTAS 30:40 12 1/1 3/7 1/2   5 5 3 4 4 1   1 2 17
17 MANTZARIS, VANGELIS 16:02   0/2 0/2     1 1 3   1     2   -3
31 BOGRIS, GEORGIOS 3:40                 1       2   -1
32 LEDAY, ZACH 6:20           1 1       1   2    
Team           2   2     1         1
Totals 200:00 79 15/29 10/26 19/26 12 26 38 20 7 14 5 2 19 24 101
        51.7% 38.5% 73.1%
Head coach: BLATT, DAVID
Min: Minutes played; Pts: Points; 2FG M-A: 2-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); 3FG M-A: 3-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); FT M-A: Free Throws (Made-Attempted); Rebounds: O (Offensive), D (Defensive), T (Total); As: Assists; St: Steals; To: Turnovers; Bl: Blocks (Fv: In Favor / Ag: Against); Fouls: Cm (Commited), Rv (Received); PIR: Performance Index Rating
Panathinaikos OPAP Athens
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
0 THOMAS, DESHAUN 17:05 8 4/4 0/2   2 2 4     2     1   7
6 PAPAGIANNIS, GEORGIOS 7:15 4 2/4     2   2     1       1 4
7 LASME, STEPHANE 14:31 4 2/3       3 3 1     1   3 2 7
10 PAPAPETROU, IOANNIS 14:11 2 1/2 0/2         2   2     3   -4
11 PAPPAS, NIKOS 17:53 5 1/2 0/5 3/5   1 1 4 2     2 3 3 2
14 GIST, JAMES 18:14 4 2/3     1   1       1     3 8
15 VOUGIOUKAS, IAN DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
19 LEKAVICIUS, LUKAS 22:25 10 2/8 2/3   1 2 3 2   1   2 1 2 6
24 LOJESKI, MATT 15:32   0/2 0/1     3 3 1   1     1 2 1
33 CALATHES, NICK 28:07 13 2/6 3/7 0/1   3 3 7 1 4     4 3 10
43 ANTETOKOUNMPO, THANASIS 21:52 8 1/2 2/3     2 2 1 1 1     4 1 6
44 MITOGLOU, KONSTANTINOS 22:55 7 2/4 1/2   4 1 5         1 4 2 6
Team           2 3 5               5
Totals 200:00 65 19/40 8/25 3/6 12 20 32 18 4 12 2 5 24 19 58
        47.5% 32% 50%
Head coach: PITINO, RICK

Head Coaches

Olympiacos Piraeus

"Mentally, I told my players a saying my good that my close friend Charles Burton, who worked with me years ago for Maccabi Tel Aviv, once told me: 'Play the game, not the occasion.' And we played the game, that's what happened. We had a bad loss last week, we lost a game to Darussafaka, who played better than us and they deserved to win. But that is not a game we should have lost. We had to respond to that. We came out here, played a great game against a team that has beaten us before, so I am proud of the guys and what they did today."

"I want to thank our fans for the great support and great energy they brought to the team. My players came out and showed pride in their club, and put on a high-level performance in a very high-level game. There is nothing quite like the derby between Olympiacos and Panathinaikos, and being a part of that special environment is a great thing for all involved and a great thing for basketball. We did the things we had to do in order to beat a good team. And we are happy, but we move forward. Tomorrow is another day."

"We tried to prepare the game in a way that would allow us to take advantage of our strengths, and find weaknesses in Panathinaikos's game, and tonight we were successful. Our guys came out with great motivation and great energy. The basketball and the tactic is always important and a big part of the game, but there is no substitute for heart and soul, and my guys brought that in a spirt of Olympiacos in a big way."

Panathinaikos OPAP Athens

"To win on the road, you have to be 6 or 8 points better in almost every phase of the game, and tonight we were not. This basketball team, as I get to know it, is a little bit challenged offensively right now. They have a difficult time scoring, and if their defense is not great that night, then it makes it even more difficult. I was hesitant to make a lot of offensive changes, but because I think our personnel is such that we can't stand around while four guys watch one play. So we got to get a lot more motion in our offense. I am going have to make some more changes offensively to get some more slashing, more cutting. Because right now, we got dominated in the frontcourt off the glass; none of our bigs even shot a free throw in the game. Deflections were way down. The last two games we averaged 31, and tonight we had 22. We had 10 to 12 steals per game, and we got four tonight. I really believe that the Olympiacos defense pushed us out of our offense almost every possession. You have to attack on offense the same way you attack on defense. And we did not tonight. Our guys have to learn to win on the road, you can’t just cut, go back door. You've got to set your man up and be very, very aggressive. We learned a lot from tonight's game. We got outplayed, but guys played hard. To win on the road, you can't just play hard; you've got to take it a level way above that. For example, we made some mental mistakes tonight, but if I as a coach can get every single guy on the team not to just play hard, but to take to a new level, like Lekavicius; if I can get every single guy on the team to play defense and offense like Lekavicius, even though we can be a little undermanned, and have our weaknesses, we will win. But that's the challenge I am facing."

"The rivalry is great. I think it is the best thing I have seen in basketball in my 41 years. The best...You have something here that is very, very special. We don't have this [in the United States], anywhere. Nowhere do we have what I've witnessed in the last 48 hours...Both organizations have a great following. I am really privileged to be here and experience it as a basketball coach."


Olympiacos Piraeus
"It feels good, especially when we won a game like this. I feel great and I feel so happy for my team. We played one great game today. We fought, we put energy for 40 minutes, and I think fans also enjoyed our game."
Olympiacos Piraeus
"Defense was the key tonight. We kept them in a low-scoring game, and that was a big advantage for us. We did not let them run, and in five-on-five defense we had a big advantage against them, so we did a good job. This is a big rivalry, and these games are always extra motivation, for them and also for us."