Valencia outlasts CSKA in double-OT to snap skid
Valencia Basket claimed a much-needed victory as it prevailed 105-103 in a thrilling double-overtime win at home over CSKA Moscow to end a losing skid. Nikola Kalinic scored the game-winning layup with 44 seconds left as Valencia snapped a three-game losing streak to move to 12-12. Kalinic and Klemen Prepelic led the way with 22 points, Martin Hemannsson poured in 17 points and Bojan Dubljevic pitched in 14 points and 12 rebounds in the win. A career-high 37 points from Mike James in his return from suspension were not enough for short-handed CSKA, which dropped its fourth game in the last five to fall to 16-8. Johannes Voigtmann had 19 points and 9 rebounds, Nikita Kurbanov tallied 17 points and Joel Bolomboy contributed 10 points.
With CSKA missing both Nikola Milutinov and Toko Shengelia, Bolomboy started for the first time since Round 4 and he had an immediate impact with a dunk to start the game and a block for a 0-4 lead. Vanja Marinkovic’s three-pointer evened the game and Dubljevic’s three-point play gave the hosts their first lead at 7-6. Hermannsson and Marinkovic were able to drive to the basket for layups as CSKA’s perimeter defense struggled early. Then Kalinic and Prepelic made three-pointers in the final 45 seconds for a 25-17 lead after 10 minutes.
Valencia’s hot shooting continued in the second quarter with 2 three-pointers each by Hermannsson and Prepelic extending the advantage to 39-24. James and Bolomboy did all they could to keep CSKA close. Voigtmann and Kurbanov nailed back-to-back triples and the margin was down to 43-38. Kalinic countered with a three-point play, but a Daniel Hackett triple trimmed the deficit to 47-43 at the break.
Marinkovic opened the second half with a three-pointer to push the gap to 50-43, but the CSKA charge continued with James and Voigtmann hitting from deep in a 2-10 surge to move ahead 52-53. Valencia temporarily went back up only to see James and Janis Strelnieks drain triples, 56-61. Valencia called for a timeout and finished the third quarter on an 8-2 spurt with Dubljevic and Prepelic both hitting three-pointers for a 64-63 lead after 30 minutes. After Strelieks opened the fourth-quarter scoring, Valencia got a triple from Prepelic and a three-point play from Dubljevic to move ahead 72-65. Strelnieks countered with a three-pointer to start a 2-9 spurt to even the game 74-74. Louis Labeyrie knocked down a pair of triples for Valencia and Kalinic’s layup made it 82-79 only to have Kurbanov knot the game again at 82-82 with a three-pointer. James’s 2 fouls shots with 33 seconds were matched by a dunk by Mike Tobey with 24 seconds to play. The game was sent to overtime when Sam Van Rossom got his hand on James’s attempt to win the game with a three-pointer just before the buzzer.
James’s free throw started the extra session with Tobey scoring a layup and one of two foul shots for an 87-85 lead. CSKA delivered a 0-6 punch to go up 87-91 only to see Kalinic score 5 straight points and Valencia led 94-93 with just more than a minute left. The lead switched hands again on James’s free throws and then Hermannsson hit just one of two foul shots with 6.4 seconds to play to send the game to a second overtime at 95-95. The second overtime started with a Voigtmann three-point play and it was 101-103 after Van Rossom and James swapped three-pointers. Dubljevic evened the game with two free throws and then Kalinic drove by Voigtmann for the eventual game-winning layup with 44 seconds to play. James would end up missing 2 three-pointers as Valencia grabbed the win.
Hermannsson's rare miss
Martin Hermannsson had a chance to win the game in the first overtime for Valencia, but he made just 1 of 2 free throws with 6.4 seconds left. That snapped a run of 27 straight made free throw attempts for the Valencia guard.
Second 2OT game of 2020-21
The Valencia and CSKA thriller was just the second game this EuroLeague season to go to two overtimes. Real Madrid beat Panathinaikos OPAP Athens 93-97 on the road in two overtimes in Round 14 in mid-December.
Valencia dominated the glass with a 53-39 advantage including 22 offensive rebounds, which the team turned into 24 second-chance points compared to just two for CSKA. Valencia also held CSKA to just 32.5% on three-pointers.
After a week without EuroLeague games due to national cup competitions, both teams return to action in Round 25 on Friday, February 19. Valencia hosts Spanish rival Real Madrid. CSKA will at home against Panathinaikos OPAP Athens.
Thursday, February 4, 2021