2021-22Regular SeasonRound 23
January 28, 2022 CET: 20:00
Local time: 21:00 OAKA Altion

Panathinaikos snaps 5-game skid with first win of 2022 

Panathinaikos OPAP Athens snapped its five-game losing streak by racing past short-handed Bitci Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz 75-63 for its first EuroLeague win of 2022. Panathinaikos did a good job bouncing back from its heartbreaking loss to Anadolu Efes Istanbul with a defense that allowed just 20 points in the first half. Nemanja Nedovic at the other end led the offense with 16 points while Jeremy Evans scored 14 points and Okaro White chipped in 12 points in helping the Greek side improve to 5-15. Panathinaikos used an 11-0 run early and opened a 16 point lead in the first quarter. The margin grew to 19 points late in the second quarter, to 25 points in the third quarter and as many as 27 points early in the last period. Baskonia was able to get within 13 points but did not have enough in falling to 7-14 with now a three-game losing streak as well as a 2-9 road record. Wade Baldwin IV paced Baskonia with 16 points and 8 assists while Rokas Giedraitis scored 12 points, Simone Fontecchio added 11 and Steven Enoch tallied 11 points and 11 rebounds. 

Nedovic opened the scoring for the hosts with a jumper and Enoch’s alley-oop was Baskonia’s first score to make it 4-2. Eleftherios Bochoridis’ triple for Panathinaikos was answered by Giedraitis with a layup to stay within 7-4. But the Spanish side’s offense dried up, going scoreless for nearly 4 minutes while White and Evans combined for 9 points in an 11-0 run as the lead grew to 18-4. Fontecchio snapped the rut only to have Evans drain a three-pointer and Panathinaikos led 22-8 after 10 minutes. 

Jayson Granger was first to score in the second quarter for the guests before Stefan Jovic hit a three-pointer for his first points for Panathinaikos, which led 27-10. Giedraitis converted an and-one and Baldwin scored to get Baskonia within 29-17. Panathinaikos called a timeout and then kept the guests scoreless for more than 4 minutes as two Evans scores and a White three-pointer pushed the advantage to 38-20 at the break. 

Nedovic made sure Panathinaikos had a good start to the second half with a three-pointer. Granger did hit a triple at the other end for the visiting team's first connection from long range to make it 43-25. Ioannis Papapetrou converted a three-point play at the other end and Panathinaikos surged ahead by 25 points - 50-25. Giedraitis managed two three-pointers and Baskonia failed to score in the final 3 minutes of the quarter, trailing 57-32 after 30 minutes. 

Leonidas Kaselakis opened the scoring in the final frame to increase the lead to 27 points. Baldwin and Enoch both hit three-pointers as Baskonia started to score a bit more consistently and pull within 20 points - 64-44. Nedovic countered with two scores to make it 70-46 with under 5 minutes left. Baskonia did not just lie down, creating a couple of turnovers while Vanja Marinkovic and Alejandro Barrera both hit three-pointers in a 0-11 run to pull within 70-57. But Jovic punched back with a three-pointer with 2 minutes to play to end the comeback hopes. 

Jovic plays first EuroLeague game for Greens

Panathinaikos finally welcomed Stefan Jovic to the line-up as the Serbian played his first game for the Greens after being announced on January 7. The 31-year-old playmaker entered the game for the first time with 3:04 minutes left in the first quarter - with a warm welcome from the fans. And his first points came on a three-pointer a minute into the second quarter. Jovic’s other basket pretty much iced the game – a three-pointer after Baskonia had scored 11 straight points to pull within 13 points with under 3 minutes to play. Jovic finished the game with 6 points, 3 rebounds and 3 assists for a performance index rating of 10 in 19 minutes of action.

Baskonia with worst-ever first half

Baskonia had a first 20 minutes to forget - in fact it was a historically bad first half as the visiting team scored just 20 points before the break, the worst first 20 minutes offensively in a EuroLeague game for the Spanish club. The Basques were three times held to just 21 points in the first half - most recently in the 2016-17 season, also against Panathinaikos Athens. It was also the club’s second-worst half scoring wise as the team managed just 16 points in the second half against Anadolu Efes Istanbul on November 1, 2012.

Telling numbers - Baskonia offense can’t make up for first half

Baskonia’s nightmare first half was too much to come back from. The Spanish team made just 8-of-24 two-pointers (33.3%) in the first 20 minutes while also missing all 13 of its three-point attempts. For the game, Baskonia ended up hitting 6-of-26 triples for 23.1% and also shot just 43.5% on 2-pointers. The team couldn’t really make up for lost points on the line either as Baskonia only attempted 6 free throws - making five of them. Otherwise, Baskonia was not too bad, winning the rebound battle 38-37 and committing only 7 turnovers.

Stefan Jovic - Panathinaikos OPAP Athens - EB21
Friday, January 28, 2022
Euroleague.net
Referees: LAMONICA, LUIGI; ROCHA, FERNANDO; RACYS, SAULIUS
Attendance: 951 (Tentative)
By Quarter1234
Panathinaikos OPAP Athens22161918
Bitci Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz8121231
End of Quarter1234
Panathinaikos OPAP Athens22385775
Bitci Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz8203263
Panathinaikos OPAP Athens
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
7 BOCHORIDIS, ELEFTHERIOS 20:40 3 0/2 1/3     3 3 5   2     3   2
9 KAVVADAS, VASILIS 17:13 4 2/4   0/1   4 4       1 1 1 4 8
10 PAPAPETROU, IOANNIS 19:43 7 3/7 0/1 1/1   2 2 5   1       1 9
14 KASELAKIS, LEONIDAS 18:45 7 2/3 1/1     1 1 2         3 1 7
15 WHITE, OKARO 24:04 12 2/4 2/3 2/2   4 4 1 2   1   2 2 17
21 AVDALAS, NEOKLIS 4:45                   1         -1
24 JOVIC, STEFAN 19:20 6 0/1 2/2     3 3 3   2     1 2 10
26 NEDOVIC, NEMANJA 23:02 16 6/8 1/5 1/2 1 3 4 4 1 1     2 1 16
40 EVANS, JEREMY 22:47 14 5/6 1/1 1/1   3 3 1         1 2 18
72 MANTZOUKAS, ELEFTHERIOS 9:09 2 1/1 0/1             1          
74 SANT-ROOS, HOWARD 20:32 4 1/5 0/1 2/2   5 5 2 2 3 1   2 2 6
Team           3 5 8     1         7
Totals 200:00 75 22/41 8/18 7/9 4 33 37 23 5 12 3 1 15 15 99
        53.7% 44.4% 77.8%
Head coach: PRIFTIS, DIMITRIS
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
Bitci Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
1 PETERS, LAMAR 17:46   0/2 0/3         2   2     2 1 -6
2 RAIESTE, SANDER 9:44     0/1   1 2 3 1     1   1 1 4
5 BALDWIN IV, WADE 29:13 16 6/11 1/4 1/2   4 4 8 2 1   1 1 6 24
7 BARRERA, ALEJANDRO 6:32 3   1/1                       3
9 MARINKOVIC, VANJA 14:20 3 0/1 1/3     1 1         1 1   -1
11 GRANGER, JAYSON 22:22 7 2/7 1/4   1 2 3 1 1       1 2 5
20 FONTECCHIO, SIMONE 31:48 11 4/8 0/5 3/3 3 3 6 2   2     3 1 6
23 ENOCH, STEVEN 35:24 11 4/9 1/1   1 10 11   1 1     3 3 17
31 GIEDRAITIS, ROKAS 32:51 12 4/8 1/4 1/1 4 4 8   3 1   1 3 1 12
Team           2   2               2
Totals 200:00 63 20/46 6/26 5/6 12 26 38 14 7 7 1 3 15 15 66
        43.5% 23.1% 83.3%
Head coach: SPAHIJA, NEVEN

Head Coaches

PRIFTIS, DIMITRIS
Panathinaikos OPAP Athens
"First of all, I want to congratulate the players. It was a difficult week. A lot of adversities and special circumstances for us – for all teams. More or less, all teams are facing some problems. We had some absences today, we were missing some players. We are facing some small problems. Some players who played today have injuries and we have to handle them. Congrats to the players. We will continue. I hope we keep this stable rhythm. We played good in the first half, and I hope we continue to play correctly and make a step forward."
SPAHIJA, NEVEN
Bitci Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz
"I would like to congratulate the Panathinaikos team for a better game and the win. Very often in my career I have said let's do something and try something different and we would not lose the game in the first half. But tonight I think we lost the game in the first half. Very often when the team is losing the game, the coach talks about bad defense but with this shooting percentage, it's very difficult to play defense and keep the other team to fewer than 75 points. For the first time in my career, my team missed all of its threes in the first half: 0-for-13. At the same time 33%, we shot from twos. Very, very tough. I know we have suffered lately – for many reasons – but I don't want to speak about that. Our second half was better. We have to continue to work, work extra to come back exactly where we want to be. Basketball-wise, the results will come."

Players

NEDOVIC, NEMANJA
Panathinaikos OPAP Athens
"It was a good victory for us. Defensively we were amazing, especially in the first half. Now it hurts even more that we lost against Efes in the way we lost the game. But it is what it is. I think we picked up the pace a little bit, we picked up the rhythm a little bit. We just have to keep going like this."
EVANS, JEREMY
Panathinaikos OPAP Athens
"We have to be able to come in and do our job and play tough. It was a tough week. Last game (against Anadolu Efes Istanbul), we can't say we wish we would have had this one. Just come out, protect home court and get the win."