Game Center: Efes wins its first EuroLeague crown
The 2020-21 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague season came to a close with an outstanding Final Four in Cologne, Germany. Anadolu Efes Istanbul made history by winning the EuroLeague for the first time, while FC Barcelona can be proud after reaching the championship game for the seventh time in the Final Four era. AX Armani Exchange set the bar high for the coming seasons by finishing third in its first Final Four appearance since 1992. And ever-present CSKA Moscow made the Final Four for the record ninth time.
Championship Game, FC Barcelona 81-86 Anadolu Efes Istanbul
Anadolu Efes Istanbul is the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague champion for the first time! Efes outlasted FC Barcelona 81-86 on Sunday night in the championship game of the 2021 Final Four at Lanxess Arena in Cologne, Germany. The victory made all the players on the team champions for the first time as well as Ergin Ataman, who became the first Turkish-born head coach to lift the trophy. Barcelona came back from an 11-point deficit to tie the game in the fourth quarter and was within 1 with 3:25 remaining, but Vasilije Micic scored 7 points in the final 3 minutes to make sure Efes went home with the trophy. Micic finished with 25 points and 5 assists, while his backcourt mate Shane Larkin added 21 points. Sertac Sanli chipped in with 12 for the winners. Cory Higgins led Barcelona with 23 points and Kyle Kuric netted 18. Brandon Davies tallied 17 points and 11 rebounds and Nikola Mirotic added 11 and 9 for Barcelona, which came up short in its bid to win its third continental crown and first since 2010.
Third Place Game, AX Armani Exchange Milan 83-73 CSKA Moscow
AX Armani Exchange Milan finished its Turkish Airlines EuroLeague season on a winning note with an 83-73 victory over CSKA Moscow in the third-place game of the 2021 Final Four at Lanxess Arena in Cologne, Germany. Sergio Rodriguez scored 14 points and dished 6 assists to lead five Milan scorers in double figures. Vlado Micov also scored 14 and Michael Roll, Riccardo Moraschini and Shavon Shields added 11 each to help Milan score its first victory at the Final Four since its last appearance in 1992 when it also placed third. Toko Shengelia led CSKA with 18 points, 9 rebounds and 3 steals. Iffe Lundberg scored 13 and Johannes Voigtmann had 12 in defeat.