Jamar Smith saved the day for UNICS

Oct 07, 2020 by Eurocupbasketball.com Print
Jamar Smith saved the day for UNICS

Jamar Smith is closing in on becoming the 7DAYS EuroCup’s all-time leading three-point shot maker. But it was his floater in the lane that saved the day for UNICS Kazan on Tuesday.

After knocking down 7 of 8 three-pointers to lead a near record-breaking UNICS attack from the outside, Smith knifed towards the basket, jumped and hung before throwing in the game-winner for an 89-88 victory over Bahcesehir Koleji Istanbul.

"I wanted to shoot the last shot. I was just trying to keep myself calm and get the best shot that I could," said Smith, who finished with 25 points in helping UNICS avoid a two-game losing streak to start the EuroCup campaign.

Smith came off the bench and made big plays all game - especially in the fourth quarter. UNICS wasted a 12-point lead in giving up a 0-12 run. After a timeout, Smith re-entered the game and nailed a triple. He added another three-pointer a couple of possessions later and assisted on John Holland's three for an 87-81 advantage. UNICS once again gave up the lead and fell behind, setting up Smith’s heroics.

Smith's 7 three-pointers gave him 217 in his EuroCup career, spanning 90 games. He is just 6 three-pointers shy of Rafa Martinez’s all-time mark of 223 threes in 144 games.

But Smith wasn’t the only UNICS player on target from long range against Bahcesehir. The team collectively made 19 of 31 three-point attempts for a blistering 61.3%. John Holland, Isaiah Canaan and Pavel Antipov all buried 3 three-pointers and Pavel Sergeev sank a pair of threes. The 19 triples were just 1 shy of the single-game EuroCup record - 20 three-pointers being made by two teams - UNICS in 2009 and ASVEL Villeurbanne in 2017.

"For UNICS Kazan it was an amazing three-point shooting performance. It was unbelievable," added Bahcesehir coach Zafer Aktas.

But the main man was 33-year-old Jamar Smith, who came up big again - as he has done so many times in the past.