CSKA bounces back in Buesa Arena
In a battle between old rivals, CSKA Moscow grabbed its sixth win by downing Bitci Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz 74-80 at Buesa Arena on Friday. CSKA improved to 6-5 while Baskonia dropped to 4-7. Johannes Voigtmann and Will Clyburn led the winners with 16 points apiece. Toko Shengelia added 15 while Iffe Lundberg had 11 for CSKA. Wade Baldwin led Baskonia with 18 points. Steven Enoch added 14 and 10 rebounds, Jayson Granger had 12 points and Rokas Giedraitis 11 for the hosts. CSKA excelled on defense in the first quarter and found a go-to guy in Voigtmann who struck three times from beyond the arc and added a layup to give his team an 8-23 lead after 10 minutes. Simone Fontecchio and Giedraitis brought Baskonia closer, 26-35, at halftime. But Clyburn and Shengelia fueled a 0-9 run which allowed CSKA to get a 13-point margin, 41-54, at the end of the third quarter. CSKA went on to control the game until the final buzzer, cruising to a well-deserved win.
Enoch got Baskonia going with an alley-oop slam. Nikita Kurbanov erased it with a layup and Lundberg scored in penetration for a 2-4 CSKA lead. Alexey Shved followed a deep jumper with a driving layup and Voigtmann buried a triple off the dribble that boosted the guests' lead to 3-11, after a 1-11 run. Tadas Sedekerskis struck from downtown but a red-hot Voigtmann bettered that with back-to-back three-pointers. Shengelia and Voigtmann each scored around the basket and Shved added a fast break layup that gave CSKA an 8-23 lead after 10 minutes.
Fontecchio stepped up with a reverse layup and a power basket early in the second quarter. Shengelia struck from downtown off a CSKA timeout but Vanja Marinkovic copied him at the other end for a 15-26 score. Clyburn followed a high-flying layup off the baseline with an alley-oop slam, but Baldwin and Enoch kept Baskonia within 19-30. Giedraitis scored the opening 4 points in a 6-0 run that Enoch capped with a close jumper that got Baskonia within 25-30. Clyburn and Ivan Ukhov helped CSKA restore a 26-35 lead at halftime.
Giedraitis hit a floater soon after the break but Lundberg scored in transition to keep CSKA way ahead, 28-37. Jayson Granger hit a triple, Giedraitis added a driving layup and Enoch ignited the crowd with a huge dunk that made it 35-38. Voigtmann rescued CSKA with a layup and Lundberg added a three-point play to give CSKA fresh air at 35-43. Fontecchio hit a mid-range shot and Enoch matched Clyburn's driving layup with a turnaround jumper. Nikola Milutinov took over with an alley-oop slam which Shengelia followed with a layup-plus-foul. Clyburn hit a jumper and Shengelia scored again to break the game open, 39-54. Baldwin got Baskonia within 41-54 after 30 minutes.
Landry Nnoko detonated a wild put-back dunk early in the fourth quarter but Shengelia answered from downtown to make Baskonia call timeout at 44-59. Baldwin and Marius Grigonis joined the three-point shootout and Enoch scored down low for a 49-62 score with 7 minutes left. Clyburn silenced the crowd with a dunk and Shved found Shengelia for a slam that kept CSKA out of trouble, 54-66. Granger buried his second triple that Voigtmann matched with a three-point play. Baldwin scored in penetration and Granger added back-to-back triples, giving Baskonia hope, 65-72, with 3 minutes to go. Baldwin scored again but Joel Bolomboy stepped up with a put-back layup that sealed the outcome.
Voigtmann, Shengelia triumph in return to Buesa Arena
It was a happy return for two former Bitci Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz players, Johannes Voigtmann and Toko Shengelia, to Buesa Arena. Their team, CSKA Moscow, registered a 74-80 road victory after Shengelia was honored by his former club in a pre-game ceremony. Once the game started, there were no friends out there as Shengelia finished with 15 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists and a PIR of 16. Voigtmann scored 11 of his 16 points in the first quarter, giving Baskonia the lead for good. He added 3 rebounds and 2 assists for a PIR of 18.
Clyburn, back on track
CSKA Moscow superstar Will Clyburn had struggled a bit in his team's last couple of games, averaging 8.0 points on poor shooting percentages (10.0% 2FG, 25.0% 3FG) against Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv and FC Barcelona. Clyburn, however, bounced back in his team's road win against Baskonia. Clyburn felt inspired on the court in which he was chosen as 2019 Final Four MVP and had an outstanding performance, finishing the game with 15 points on 6-of-10 two-pointers and 4-of-4 free throws, adding 4 rebounds, 3 assists and 4 fouls drawn for a PIR of 18.
Turnovers sink Baskonia vs. CSKA
Stats-wise, it was a balanced game. Both teams shot the ball with similar percentages (Baskonia 52.6% 2FG, 33.3% 3FG; CSKA 54.8% 2FG, 36.8% 3FG) and the hosts outrebounded their opponents by 37-29, pulling down 14 offensive boards. What allowed CSKA to win the game, however, was turnovers. Baskonia finished the game with 20 turnovers, one shy of its season-high mark - 21 against Olympiacos Piraeus in Round 1. CSKA had 15 turnovers, way above its previous average (10.7), but those five extra possessions allowed the Russian powerhouse to return home with a win.
Friday, November 19, 2021