EuroCup returns from break with Bourg hosting Bursaspor
Two teams coming off back-to-back losses will look to regroup when Mincidelice JL Bourg en Bresse hosts Frutti Extra Bursaspor on Tuesday evening. Despite losses in Rounds 4 and 5, Bourg (1-4) won its last home game by routing Promitheas Patras 92-62. Rasheed Sulaimon (12.4 ppg.), Pierre Pelos (12.3 ppg.) and Eric Mika (10.8 ppg., 5.5 rpg.) have been Bourg’s top performers so far. Bursaspor (2-3) is 1-1 on the road this season. Allerik Freeman (17.8 ppg.) is seventh in the EuroCup in scoring. Dave Dudzinski (11.6 ppg., 6.0 rpg.) and Derek Needham (10.2 ppg., 5.6 apg.) have been Bursaspor’s other top performers. Bourg is 2-0 in past games against Turkish clubs after sweeping Bahcesehir Koleji Istanbul last season.
Marquee matchup: Bourg’s Sulaimon vs. Bursaspor’s Freeman
Both Mincidelice JL Bourg en Bresse and Frutti Extra Bursaspor have been led by their shooting guards this season. Rasheed Sulaimon is both Bourg’s top scorer (12.4 ppg.) and a superb on-the-ball defender. He had his best game of the season right before the break with 25 points at Valencia Basket. Allerik Freeman (17.8 ppg.) is Bursaspor’s go-to scorer and ranks seventh in the competition this season alongside his 2.6 assists per game. He has scored at least 15 points in every game, but won’t have it easy against Sulaimon’s defense. Their matchup will be critical to the outcome of this clash.
Keys to victory: Bourg vs. Bursaspor
Despite strong play by Eric Mika, Mincidelice JL Bourg en Bresse has not performed as well as expected in the paint. The team’s 49.2% shooting on two-pointers is the fourth-lowest in the EuroCup and it has allowed opponents to make a blistering 61.1% of two-pointers. JaCorey Williams had a season-high 16 points in Round 5 and his presence alongside Mika, Pierre Pelos and Alexandre Chassang could be the ticket to turning things around and getting Bourg on the winning path.
Frutti Extra Bursaspor is averaging 9 three-pointers per game in both wins and losses. However, its success rate is 41.9% in wins compared to 33.8% in losses. If Allerik Freeman, Dave Dudzinski, Derek Needham and co. can fill it up from downtown. The visitors would have a good chance at earning their second road win of the season.