2017-18Regular SeasonRound 27
March 21, 2018 CET: 18:00
Local time: 20:00 MEGASPORT ARENA

CSKA tops Reds to clinch first place

CSKA Moscow clinched first place for the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Regular Season by downing Olympiacos Piraeus 89-81 in the Russian capital on Wednesday. CSKA improved to 22-5 and improved on its record (21-9) from last season. Olympiacos dropped to 18-9 and third in the standings. Nando De Colo led the winners with 25 points near-perfect shooting. Cory Higgins added 14 points, Sergio Rodriguez had 13 and Will Clyburn had 12 for CSKA, which has defeated every opponent at least once this season. Georgios Printezis led Olympiacos with 24 points, Vassilis Spanoulis added 17 plus 6 assists and Nikola Milutinov scored 11 for Olympiacos. CSKA led by 1 midway through third quarter when Rodriguez and De Colo fueled a 14-1 run that broke the game open at 75-62 early in the fourth and the hosts kept a safe margin the rest of the way.

Brian Roberts got Olympiacos going with free throws and Printezis added consecutive layups for a 3-7 lead. Clyburn scored down low and even though Spanoulis struck from downtown, Kyle Hines and Nikita Kurbanov brought CSKA within 9-10. Printezis hit one from beyond the arc and followed Spanoulis's three-point play with a layup, which prompted CSKA to call timeout at 11-18. Rodriguez and De Colo combined for all the points in a 10-0 run that put CSKA in charge at 21-18. Milutinov had three consecutive slams and Ioannis Papapetrou added a layup, but Higgins dunked off a steal for a 23-26 score after 10 minutes. Semen Antonov nailed a triple early in the second quarter and De Colo struck twice from downtown and added a layup, after which Olympiacos called timeout at 34-26. A jumper by Antonov capped a 15-0 CSKA run. Hollis Thompson rescued Olympiacos with a three-pointer, but Othello Hunter scored down low and De Colo added a jumper. Spanoulis and Jamel McLean brought the guests within 40-35. Cory Higgins and Kurbanov nailed back-to-back jumpers, however a triple by Spanoulis and a layup by Printezis fixed the halftime score at 44-40.

Milutinov dunked again after the break and a jumper by Roberts made it a 1-point game. De Colo followed a three-pointer with a jumper and Higgins caught fire, burying three consecutive mid-range shots for a 56-49 CSKA lead. Printezis took over with 7 quick points and a jumper by Strelnieks got Olympiacos within 61-60. Clyburn made free throws, Rodriguez hit a jumper and Andrey Vorontsevich nailed a triple to give CSKA fresh air at 69-62 after 30 minutes. De Colo hit a jumper and followed Rodriguez's layup with free throws to make it 75-62 after a 14-1 run. Strelnieks and Bobby Brown tried to change things for Olympiacos, but Rodriguez and Clyburn kept CSKA way ahead, 81-68. Spanoulis and Printezis kept pacing Olympiacos, but CSKA was well on its way to a big home win.

Nando De Colo - CSKA Moscow - EB17
Wednesday, March 21, 2018
Euroleague.net
Referees: LAMONICA, LUIGI (ITA), GARCIA GONZALEZ, JUAN CARLOS (ESP), PETEK, SASO (SLO)
Attendance: 11923
By Quarter1234
CSKA Moscow23212520
Olympiacos Piraeus26142219
End of Quarter1234
CSKA Moscow23446989
Olympiacos Piraeus26406281
CSKA Moscow
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
1 DE COLO, NANDO 26:41 25 5/6 4/4 3/4   5 5 4   4     3 6 31
3 RUDD, VICTOR 3:49     0/1                       -1
7 FRIDZON, VITALY 5:21   0/1 0/1     1 1   1 1     3   -4
9 WESTERMANN, LEO 3:49     0/1   1 1 2 1         1   1
11 ANTONOV, SEMEN 13:10 5 1/1 1/2     2 2 1 1       2   6
13 RODRIGUEZ, SERGIO 24:07 13 4/4 1/4 2/2 1 1 2 3 1 1     3 1 13
20 VORONTSEVICH, ANDREY 19:55 3 0/1 1/2     1 1 1     1   1   3
21 CLYBURN, WILL 25:22 12 5/10 0/1 2/2 4 2 6 2 1 3 1   1 2 14
22 HIGGINS, CORY 21:33 14 5/7 1/2 1/2   2 2 4 1 3   1 3 5 15
41 KURBANOV, NIKITA 16:19 4 2/4 0/1   1 2 3 1         2   3
42 HINES, KYLE 17:49 7 3/7   1/2 3   3 2 1     2   1 7
44 HUNTER, OTHELLO 22:05 6 3/5     2 3 5   2 1       1 11
Team           2 1 3     1         2
Totals 200:00 89 28/46 8/19 9/12 14 21 35 19 8 14 2 3 19 16 101
        60.9% 42.1% 75%
Head coach: ITOUDIS, DIMITRIS
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
Olympiacos Piraeus
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
1 MCLEAN, JAMEL 22:52 3 0/1   3/6 1 4 5 1 2   1   1 5 12
3 BROWN, BOBBY 11:19 3 1/1 0/3 1/2         1       4 1 -3
6 PAPAPETROU, IOANNIS 32:27 2 1/6 0/1     3 3 1 2           2
7 SPANOULIS, VASSILIS 29:22 17 2/9 3/8 4/4       6 3 5   2 3 4 8
11 MILUTINOV, NIKOLA 16:57 10 5/5     3 2 5 1     2   2   16
13 STRELNIEKS, JANIS 17:49 5 1/2 1/1           1 3     2    
14 TILLIE, KIM 11:49 3 1/1   1/2           1       1 2
15 PRINTEZIS, GEORGIOS 27:14 24 8/11 1/2 5/5 2 3 5 1 1 2       3 28
22 ROBERTS, BRIAN 20:13 9 1/2 0/1 7/7 1 1 2 3         2 3 13
31 BOGRIS, GEORGIOS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
33 WILTJER, KYLE 0:35                              
34 THOMPSON, HOLLIS 9:23 5 1/4 1/1 0/3 2 2 4           2 2 3
Team           2 2 4     1         3
Totals 200:00 81 21/42 6/17 21/29 11 17 28 13 10 12 3 2 16 19 84
        50% 35.3% 72.4%
Head coach: SFAIROPOULOS, IOANNIS

Head Coaches

ITOUDIS, DIMITRIS
CSKA Moscow
"The first thing that I want to say is congratulations to the players. We accomplished another goal, which is qualifying with the home-court advantage, and I think that today, with the win, we secured the first spot, which we are talking about a lot. We have a lot of games remaining and need to show our character also in those games, but they deserve to be congratulated when in such a marathon, you accomplished another goal, so congratulations to the players. Congratulations to the fans, who filled the gym. It is nice to have such an atmosphere. I have to mention it all the time: we are growing and CSKA fans show that they like the players and the team. Regarding the game, we had an issue with turnovers. Like I told you at halftime, we were losing possessions. Some of those turnovers were forced by their good defense and some others were unnecessary errors that we could have avoided. Overall, our bad momentum in the beginning was followed by some established game by our team, with good reads on offense and defense. Wherever we had the mismatches, we go on the block, we go to drive-and-kick, we shared the ball well, almost 20 assists again against Olympiacos, which I think it is one of the teams that doesn't allow that many assists. We won the final three quarters, 66-55 if I am not mistaken. It was a close game, Olympiacos is a very experienced and talented team, but congratulations to my players. To be continued!"
SFAIROPOULOS, IOANNIS
Olympiacos Piraeus
"Congratulations to CSKA for the win. They played better in most parts of the game and won by a good difference in the end. I think we had a good start of the game, offensively we performed really good and in general, not only in the beginning, but in all parts of the game, we were very good offensively. But when you don't play good defense here in Moscow against CSKA it is not easy to win even if you play great on offense. Especially on two-point shots, at the end of the first half, they had hit 60% and finished the game also with 60%. When we allow so many easy points inside the paint, it is not easy to win on the road, not just at CSKA. We continue to the next game now, at home on Friday. Good luck to CSKA. I think the standings shows the reality; CSKA performed really well all season and deserved to be first. CSKA is always a favorite to go to the Final Four and win it."

Players

DE COLO, NANDO
CSKA Moscow
"Like our coach said in the first half, we made some easy mistakes and had easy turnovers. We tried to fix it in the second half, but the first goal was to keep playing defense. I stayed focused on my game and all the team played good tonight, so I got open shots. Sometimes the shots go in, so this is good."
HIGGINS, CORY
CSKA Moscow
"It was a big game for us; we had lost to them earlier in the season. We wanted to avenge that loss and more importantly, stay on the right path and keep getting better, finishing the season strong. Whenever we play Olympiacos, it is going to be tough, so we got exactly what we expected from them."
RODRIGUEZ, SERGIO
CSKA Moscow
"We are already qualified and first. It was a good win against a great team right after playing against Fenerbahce, another great team. We have to keep working every day. We know it is a long way and we have to be ready for the next three games coming, and then for the playoffs, which will be crucial for us."