Quarterfinals Game 1, MVP: Errick McCollum, UNICS Kazan

Mar 06, 2019 by Eurocupbasketball.com Print

UNICS Kazan guard Errick McCollum marked his return to the 7DAYS EuroCup Playoffs with a performance that earned him the MVP of the Round honor for Game 1 of the quarterfinals. McCollum lifted UNICS to an 86-66 win over Lokomotiv Kuban Krasnodar in their best-of-three series opener by matching his career-high of 32 points, which was also the second-highest point total by any EuroCup player this season. That included his 15-for-15 show from the free-throw line, which set a new record for playoff games. In fewer than 24 minutes off the bench, he amassed a performance index rating of 37, which matched the fourth highest in quarterfinals history. Following McCollum with the second-highest PIR in Game 1 was Unicaja Malaga hero Mathias Lessort, whose blocked shot and put-back dunk in the last 16 seconds gave his team a 90-91 victory over host ALBA Berlin. Lessort's 18 points, 7 rebounds, 2 steals and 2 blocks led to a PIR of 32, his high in this, his first EuroCup season. McCollum's teammate Pierria Henry came next with a PIR of 30. He had 18 points, 9 assists, 6 rebounds and 2 steals in UNICS's victory. Moussa Diagne had 16 points, 8 rebounds and a PIR of 29 despite MoraBanc Andorra's 79-75 defeat on the road against LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne. The decider in that game was ASVEL veteran Charles Kahudi, with 21 points, including 4-for-6 shooting from downtown, and a PIR of 26. Kahudi's scoring total matched his personal high in his 73rd career EuroCup game.

Individual highs: Mike Tobey, Valencia Basket, 4 blocks

McCollum was the top scorer in Game 1 with 32 points. Diante Garrett of Tofas Bursa remains the EuroCup’s full-season scoring leader with 18.4 points per game. Mike Tobey of Valencia Basket had 9 rebounds, which were the most of any player on Tuesday. Jalen Reynolds of Zenit St. Petersburg is the top rebounder for the season with 8.1 rebounds per game. ALBA guard Martin Hermannsson was the only player in Game 1 to deliver a double-digit number of assists with 10. Garrett tops the assists chart this season with 6.1 on average. Mateusz Ponitka of Lokomotiv and Raymar Morgan of UNICS each had 3 steals to lead all players in quarterfinals Game 1. Javonte Green of ratiopharm Ulm is the EuroCup leader in steals for the season with 2.5 per game. Tobey also had 4 blocks to lead all players in that category. Arka Gdyinia’s Robert Upshaw is the shot-blocking leader with 1.7 per contest. Hermannsson had Game 1’s only double-double with 13 points and 10 assists.