2010-11Final FourSEMIFINAL A
May 06, 2011 CET: 21:00
Local time: 21:00 PALAU SANT JORDI
Chuck Eidson - Maccabi Electra - Final Four Barcelona 2011

Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv rocked Real Madrid 82-63

Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv rocked Real Madrid 82-63 at Palau Sant Jordi on Friday night in the second semifinal at the 2011 Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four to book a spot in the title game. Chuck Eidson scored 19 points, grabbed 8 rebounds and set a Euroleague semifinals record with 6 steals to lead Maccabi to the final, where it will meet old rival Panathinaikos, which defeated Montepaschi Siena 77-69 earlier Friday in the first semifinal. With the win Maccabi, reached the Euroleague final for the seventh time in a dozen seasons, tied Madrid for the most appearances ever in the Euroleague title game with 14 and on Sunday will go for its sixth continental crown, which would be second only to Madrid’s eight. Sofoklis Schortsanitis added 16 points, Guy Pnini 14, Jeremy Pargo tallied 13 and 7 assists and David Blu scored 10 for the winners. Madrid led early, but Maccabi battled back and held a 32-29 lead at halftime. Maccabi then jumped out to an 8-point lead on a spectacular Pargo slam. Madrid closed the gap to 2 and was down just 6 late in the third quarter before Maccabi went on a 13-2 charge to take a commanding lead and coasted the rest of the way, with the lead peaking at 23. Ante Tomic posted 17 points to lead Madrid before going out with an injury and Felipe Reyes added 15 points and 14 rebounds in defeat.

After both teams missed on their first possessions, Tomic put Madrid on the board first and a Reyes jumper doubled the lead. Both teams seemed to have cases of nervousness with some sloppy plays early, but Guy Pnini threw the monkey off Maccabi’s back with a three-pointer. Sergio Llull extended Madrid to 3-6 before Maccabi finally got Schortsanitis involved with a basket-plus-foul. Maccabi missed a chance to tie or even go ahead when Pargo missed twice from the line. Reyes corralled an offensive rebound at the other end and banked it in to boost Madrid. After both teams missed long jumpers, Pargo pulled up and tied the game at 8-8 with a triple. Richard Hendrix was slapped with an unsportsmanlike foul for holding on to Tomic, but he missed both of the resulting free throws. However on the resulting possession, Sergio Llull added a bucket for the Whites. Eidson used a slick move to get his first points and tie the game again. Pargo missed from the line for a third time before hitting the back end of a pair to give Maccabi its first lead, 10-11. Tal Burstein handling the ball dished to Pnini for a triple to extend the lead. Pnini hammered D’Or Fischer and was called for an unsportsmanlike foul after the latter grabbed an offensive rebound and looked to score. Fischer made the resulting free throws to narrow the gap to 14-12 at the end of the quarter.

Blu brought the Maccabi fans to their feet with a three-pointer from the top of the key to start the second quarter. After Madrid stopped Sofo inside Reyes narrowed the gap thanks to a fine assist from Carlos Suarez. Maccabi jumped ahead after Pnini nailed another three and Blu spotted Schortsanitis trailing on a play for a slam that lifted the lead to 22-14 and caused Madrid head coach Lele Molin to call for a timeout. Pablo Prigioni got free for a triple from the corner and Tomic drew a foul from Schortsanitis as the Whites worked their way back. Reyes remained active on the offensive glass , drawing a foul from Milan Macvan and brining his team within 3. Eidson went inside and made it 24-19 midway through the second quarter, but a suddenly hot Prigioni sank a second triple. Schortsanitis went right at the Madrid defense and managed to force Reyes into a foul, but missed twice from the line. Tomic spotted an open Reyes, who knotted the game at 24-24. Richard Hendrix came in for Sofo and put the yellow-and-blue crew back on top. Then Pargo created an opening for Hendrix for a two-handed jam. However Tomic drew a foul from Hendrix – his second –and scored a hook over him to make it 28-27. Sofo came in for Hendrix and quickly scored underneath, but the centers remained centers of attention. Prigioni assisted to Tomic again and Blu dished to Sofo. A Tomic miss and an offensive foul on Schortsanitis ended that run, but Maccabi held on for a 32-29 halftime advantage.

Suarez trimmed the gap to just a single point with a pair of free throws to open the second half, but came away disheartened after despite excellent defense, Eidson beat the 24-second buzzer with a triple. Schortsanitis completed a three-point play to boost Maccabi’s edge to 6 before Llull was whistled for an off-the-ball offensive foul. The Maccabi crowed erupted as Pargo soared for a showtime dunk. Llull silenced the Tel Aviv faithful with a triple, but on its next possession Reyes knocked Pnini over and was called for an offensive foul. Another Pargo highlight – a spin move and teardrop off the glass – was answered by Prigioni with a three-pointer to make it 42-38. Suarez came through at the end of the 24-second clock with a big three from the top of the key to make it a 2-point game. Maccabi reacted in time as Blu scored a layup in transition and Eidson spun through the key and was fouled, allowing him to bump the advantage to 47-41 from the line. Hendrix positioned himself well for a tip-in as Maccabi climbed back to an 8-point lead. Llull got 2 back for Madrid, but after getting to the line and making a free throw, Eidson stole the inbounds pass, laid the ball in and drew a foul for a quick 5 points that put the Israeli giants ahead by double figures for the first time. Tomic converted two free throws and then took a pass from Sergio Rodriguez for 2 more, but Pargo had the last word with a penetration and layup to put Maccabi up 55-47 heading into the deciding quarter.

Maccabi looked to put the game away as Blu hit a jumper and Eidson sank a three on the fourth shot of a lengthy possession to give the team its biggest lead to that point. Tomic countered quickly, but Pargo nailed a triple and after Tomic limped off with an apparent leg injury, Blu practically iced the game with a triple to complete a 13-2 run that started at the end of the previous quarter. Llull hoped to ignite something with a steal and layup, but an Eidson three started the Maccabi fans in song. Pargo later fed Big Sofo inside to take the lead to 20. With the outcome already clear, Maccabi captain Derrick Sharp, the oldest player at this year’s Final Four at age 39, came on and helped Maccabi ice the game with a triple to make it 82-60 and seal an impressive win on the way to what promises to be an exciting final.

Friday, May 6, 2011
Frankie Sachs, Euroleague.net, Barcelona
No results found.
Attendance: 15768
By Quarter1234
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv14182327
Real Madrid12171816
End of Quarter1234
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv14325582
Real Madrid12294763
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 PARGO, JEREMY 32:56 13 3/6 2/5 1/4 1 2 3 7   3     4 4 11
5 HENDRIX, RICHARD 21:26 6 3/6     1 5 6   1   1   4   7
6 SHARP, DERRICK 2:37 3   1/1                       3
7 BLU, DAVID 28:58 10 2/5 2/6     5 5 2         4 2 8
8 ELIYAHU, LIOR 9:56 1 0/2   1/2         1 2       1 -2
10 PNINI, GUY 32:14 14 1/1 4/6     1 1 1         3 3 14
11 BURSTEIN, TAL 16:53           3 3 3             6
12 LABANOWSKI, SEAN DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
13 EIDSON, CHUCK 30:05 19 3/5 3/4 4/5 1 7 8 2 6 3 1   2 6 33
14 MACVAN, MILAN 5:44     0/1             1     1   -3
21 SCHORTSANITIS, SOFOKLIS 19:11 16 7/11   2/5   5 5     1   1 4 5 13
Team           2 1 3               3
Totals 200:00 82 19/36 12/23 8/16 5 29 34 15 8 10 2 1 22 21 93
        52.8% 52.2% 50%
Head coach: BLATT, DAVID
Min: Minutes played; Pts: Points; 2FG M-A: 2-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); 3FG M-A: 3-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); FT M-A: Free Throws (Made-Attempted); Rebounds: O (Offensive), D (Defensive), T (Total); As: Assists; St: Steals; To: Turnovers; Bl: Blocks (Fv: In Favor / Ag: Against); Fouls: Cm (Commited), Rv (Received); PIR: Performance Index Rating
Real Madrid
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 TOMIC, ANTE 28:00 17 6/12   5/9 2 4 6 2 1 1 1   3 6 19
5 PRIGIONI, PABLO 26:40 9 0/1 3/6   2 1 3 3 2 2     3 1 9
8 SUAREZ, CARLOS 29:11 8   2/5 2/2   2 2 3   2     1 2 9
9 REYES, FELIPE 27:03 15 4/10 0/1 7/8 6 8 14 2 1 2   1 3 7 25
12 MIROTIC, NIKOLA 12:57   0/2 0/3   1 1 2         1     -4
13 RODRIGUEZ, SERGIO 13:20   0/2       2 2 2   1     4   -3
14 VELICKOVIC, NOVICA DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
16 BEGIC, MIRZA DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
20 VIDAL, SERGI DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
21 FISCHER, DOR 11:59 2 0/2   2/2 2 1 3     3     3 3  
23 LLULL, SERGIO 29:01 9 3/7 1/5   1 2 3 1 1 3     3 2 2
24 TUCKER, CLAY 21:49 3 0/5 1/3     1 1           1 1 -3
Team           1 2 3               3
Totals 200:00 63 13/41 7/23 16/21 15 24 39 13 5 14 1 2 21 22 57
        31.7% 30.4% 76.2%

Head Coaches

Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"The Final Four games are very special. They are one and done and you have very little time or opportunity to make mistakes. You have to play the right game at right time to reach the final and of course to win it. We were fearful of the beginning of the game because it’s been a while since we played a Euroleague level game… Since the Caja Laboral series ended really. We were concerned that we wouldn’t be ready for a high-level game, with the physicality, speed and size and that influenced our beginning. But we weathered the storm. We didn’t control the game, but kept our hands on the game. We led by 3 at halftime. We probably should have led by more if we had made free throws and rebounded defensively better. At halftime, I told the players that we haven’t lost our way. We played god defense in the first half, but didn’t finish with rebounds. We were calm, sure of what we were doing and played a tremendous second half.

The difference was clear and justifiable in this game.

"I am really happy for the people that came here today and the ones outside. We has six- to eight thousand fans here. I was worried that I would have to see people walking around Barcelona for two 2 days after we lose. I’m also happy that we can play Sunday for the country and our fans around the world and try to win a championship.

"Zeljko Obradovic is the best coach in the history of European basketball. But players play and coaches do their work. If Sofo and Chucky and Jeremy don’t do their job, we don’t win. We play Panathinaikos on Sunday, not Zeljko. He’s gonna be there, I know that. They are doing things this year that they’ve never done. They are using defenses that we used against them in the past and doing it great.

"This project for me was a long-term project. I came to Maccabi with basically a few pieces in place. We built this team almost from scratch. We did that, progressed week to week. We played some dominant games and were one of the best teams this season. But 10 months ago when I came to Maccabi, I would have just been happy making the Top 16. And When Perkins was hurt, I didn’t think we could do it. You wonder how you will respond and our guys have done an unbelievable job. I hope we are able to keep this team together past this year and see what we can do.

"The biggest positive? That we were able to play our game, impose our will and that is something that is not easy at this level. The negative was that 2,000 fans from Israel were stuck outside without tickets. I hope we find a way to get them in Sunday because we will need all of them"
Real Madrid
"I am not very surprised we lost because I believe that playing this kind of game, you need something else and we could not bring out as individuals or as a team the plusses we needed.

As I said before getting here, going back to this scenario was the most relevant and we came with great expectations, but I believe that we have to learn from this. This game is history and just a lesson to learn from and I hope that my team and my players will learn from this experience. And on Sunday we have to play hard because going home with a victory is very important for us. I want to congratulate Maccabi because their second half was very good. They took off their press and were able to use their forwards to create. Their scoring really made the difference.

"When I say learning from this, I mean the way to control your emotions, your feelings. When I say mastering your emotions, I don’t mean just why at the beginning of the game we missed many simple shots, but also that the plan for the game has to be respected mentally throughout the game. And these kinds of things you learn from and then you work on them day after day in practice and this is relevant. Something else we have to learn is that many of the games you don’t win because you have talent, which I believe we have, but you win them because you understand. In the second half Maccabi increased its physical play. They thought we caused trouble, so they pressed and got shots in the paint. And we could not respond. But I want to look on the bright side, If you don’t play these kinds of games, you can’t win. Obviously I am not happy with the defeat, we lost an opportunity here – with all due respect to Maccabi. I hope if we are able to learn, we will have more chances to play in these games.

"If you look at the game between Siena and Panathinaikos, the first thing I can think of is that this is a man’s game and we are playing with kids. It’s not only your body and strength. There is a difference. We have 23, 24 year olds, but it’s also the kind of game we play. That’s just the way it is.

"When I say we have to read the game, [Maccabi’s fourth quarter start] is what I mean. We make a great effort and catch up, just 2 points down. The effort was done by five players. And when I start moving players, a team knows they have to close things up. And we didn’t.

We allowed Pargo to score and Schortsanitis to score and they were lucky with shots by Eidson, but this play in the paint, particularly when players come off the bench, we have to stop it. We have to understand how to stop your opponent. With the talent we have, if we are not able to stop opponents on defense, our talent is not enough. If we could have stopped them, then anxiety comes in. But given that we are playing with players from the bench, the first thing is to stop the opponent. We could have created doubts for Maccabi, but weren’t able. Then they hit three-point shots and that’s why the game ends like that, because we couldn’t conclude."


Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"We didn't have a good start, and they did a great job on the glass, but then we became tougher and in the second half we wore them out. That made things easier for us. The fans surely helped us with their great push for 40 minutes. It's still just one game and now we need to focus on the next one. I'm not smiling because I'm keeping my big smiles for Sunday night when we take the trophy."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"Winning the cup is anything but easy, and I'm sure it's going to be a totally different game against Panathinaikos. I don't see how we can beat such a team by 20 points, but I'll settle for just a one-point win. We'll have to be very aggressive right from the start. Panathiankos is a very experienced team. It's a great feeling to see these fans. I expect a big game on Sunday. It will be like fire. We have less than 2 days to prepare for that game, and I'm sure our coaches will make sure we walk the court knowing everything needed to win. Real is a very good team, but we played great defense, especially in the second half. Once we stopped their offensive rebounds things were much easier for us."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"Once the first shot went in it changes everything. All of a sudden the rim looks like an ocean and making the following shots is much easier. I'm very excited about this win. It's really a great feeling that I can't compare to anything else. We worked so hard during the season and that's a great, great reward for all of us. Without Doron everything is more difficult so we need to step up again and again, to cover for all the great things he gave us. Panathiankos is a great team with a great coach, and I'm sure we won't beat them by 19 points, but we certainly do plan to beat them. We have great respect for them, but we're still Maccabi Tel Aviv, and we're not afraid of anyone. The fans were amazing. They made it feel like we're playing in Nokia Arena."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"Defensively, you can’t ask for a better ballgame. Before everything, I would have been pretty happy limiting Madrid to 63 points. But they are a great team, don’t let anybody fool you. Top four in Europe, so we have to feel proud. I tried to take what they gave me, and today I took care of my opportunities. When you have Sofo in there sometimes, they have to collapse and things happen for you. I never thought we were in control of the game until only three minutes were left. You can never ease up in a game like that. When you are in the moment, you just want to keep scoring and scoring to put them away. You can’t ask for a better crowd than we had tonight. They were into it, and we showed all Europe who has got the best fan base."
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"It was a tough game, no matter what the box score says. Both teams were a little tight, especially in the first half, but we maintained our focus and increased our defensive intensity to come away with it. It was a mental and physical test, and the teams that excel in the physical area, don’t back down and play tough are the ones who usually win these games. The way we started the fourth quarter was key for us. We dug in, played hard, got stops, and maybe at one point we wore them down mentally.2
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv
"I don’t believe the score represents the true difference between both teams. Real Madrid is a great team with a great roster. The thing is we had a great defensive game and we were able to run. Chuck Edison helped us a lot in the late third and early third quarters with some big three pointers and shot the game wide open. After that, we took over. Jeremy is the kind of guy that you never know what’s going to happen when he start playing. He’s doing a great job and I believe that, right now, he is the best one-on-one player in Europe. The way he plays is amazing and he allows me and other player to get free shots. But in our team, everybody works, everybody plays and that’s what’s gotten us this far. Early in the game, we were the team we were all year, but sometimes you feel the physical and mental toll, as not many guys have been in this kind of stage before. Even for me, in my third time, it’s kind of overwhelming, but we stayed focused and, as the game progressed we found ourselves and did our job."
Real Madrid
"We had a great first half, playing tough defense and being focused in offense. We kind of went down after the break. They started to hit shots, even tough ones, shot clock buzzer-beaters, even off the glass. Instead of going up, we sank a bit because these baskets hurts us a lot. They got a double-digit lead and we could not erase it. Maccabi had a great performance beyond the three-point line and we had some silly turnovers. We have to rest as much as we can to give our best in the third-place game. It is very important for us. We have to make our fans proud of us and not allow them to go back to Madrid seeing that we didn't fight and compete."
Real Madrid
"I believe that the end of the third quarter was the key to this game. They took advantage of our mistakes and got a big lead. They got a 13 or 14-point margin and everything was uphill for us from that moment. We didn't have the energy or patience to trim the lead down to 6-7 points and try to return to the game. Their physical level and our turnovers late in the third quarter were the keys for Maccabi to break the game and seal the outcome."
Real Madrid
"Maccabi was the best team out there and we must congratulate them. We have to try to be positive, like we did all season, and focus on the Spanish League once we get back home. I think this experience will have us in future Final Four appearances. I believe that this team will come back to the Final Four. We must look forward -- we did good things and this has been an experience for all of us. We paid a high price for our lack of experience but we will come back stronger in the future. Their physical level was much higher than ours, especially in the second half. Again, we have to learn from this and try to increase our physical level right away in the third-place game."
Real Madrid
"They outplayed us today. They did things that they wanted to do and we didn't do things right. We turned the ball over, missed shots, they got in transition and that was the key to the game. Of course, everybody wants to win the Final Four coming in, but only one team can win. The club has not been here for 15 years but we still had it in our minds and we had come here to win it all. A good team beat us today and we wish them luck on Sunday. We have to bounce back. There is no way that we can come out on Sunday and give the same performance that we gave today. It would be a lack of respect for the club and our fans."