2004-05Final FourSEMIFINAL B
May 06, 2005 CET: 20:40
Local time: 21:40 OLYMPIYSKY ARENA
Betts, Macijauskas and Calderon - Tau Ceramica - FF Moscow 2005

Tau Ceramica provided one of the biggest surprises ever in the Euroleague Final Four by beating mighty CSKA 78-85 in the second semifinal of the Final Four in the Olympiysky Arena, Moscow on Friday. CSKA had entered the game with a record-breaking 21-1 record, but shot just as poorly as Tau did well whenever it seemed necessary. With the score tied 62-62 and less than 8 minutes remaining, Tau soared on a 2-11 run featuring three-pointers by Pablo Prigioni, Jose Manuel Calderon and Arvydas Macijauskas to take full control. Tau will now face defending champs Maccabi Tel Aviv in the Euroleague Final on Sunday at 16:40 CET. Macijauskas led the winners with 23 points. Calderon added 13 and Kornel David posted a double-double with 11 points and 12 rebounds, 6 of them in the final period. Luis Scola had 10 points despite playing less than 21 minutes due to foul trouble. J.R. Holden led CSKA with 20 points. Demos Dikoudis added 13 points, Marcus Brown 12 and David Andersen 10. CSKA's dream of winning its first title since 1971 at home suffered from 10-for-28 foul shooting and 8-for-29 three-point shooting. Tau Ceramica, though a newcomer to the Final Four, reaches its second Euroleague final, after having finished runner-up to Kinder Bologna in a best-of-five playoffs series in 2001. Tau head coach Dusko Ivanovic now has the chance to win the Euroleague both as a player and a coach. CSKA became the first team to lose three consecutive Final Four semifinals since Aris did it from 1988 to 1990.

Andersen opened the game with a turnaround jumper in the paint, as Tau struggled to score for a minute until Macijauskas turned a driving layup into a three-point play for a 2-3 Tau edge. He slashed again for a power layup, but Holden immediately answered from downtown to tie the game, 5-5. Both teams started with man-to-man defense, with Dikoudis being very physical against Scola. Even with that, Calderon fired in a three-pointer to put Tau back in charge, 5-8. CSKA was having trouble at both ends. Meanwhile, Macijauskas took over with an off-balance turnaround jumper, while Hansen capped a 0-8 Tau run with a three-pointer off the dribble which gave Tau a 5-13 margin. Dikoudis scored in the paint for CSKA, but Tau was now on fire. Scola scored in the paint against Andersen and Kornel David fired in his trademark five-meter jumper to keep his team going. When Scola grabbed an offensive rebound for a put-back basket, CSKA was down 10-19 and forced to call timeout. Sergei Monya stepped on court to slow Macijauskas, while Brown carried on struggling against Hansen's outstanding defense. Tau boosted its margin into double digits once David made free throws for a 10-21 lead after 7 minutes. Brown drove for his first basket, while Hansen had to go to the bench with 2 fouls. Andersen woke CSKA up with a dunk, while Theodoros Papaloukas added a driving layup to bring their team within 16-23. Tiago Splitter came off the bench after a Tau timeout and immediately had a big block on Andersen which Calderon turned into a fastbreak layup. A technical foul of Ivanovic allowed CSKA to cut its deficit to 17-25 after 10 minutes.

Calderon opened fire in the second quarter with free throws, but CSKA was a different team now and got back into the game in less than 3 minutes. Holden became his team's go-to guy with back-to-back bombs from downtown, while Andersen scored in the paint to make it a two-point game, 25-27. Tau struggled to score for 3 long minutes, while Monya capped a 11-0 with a corner three which put CSKA back in charge, 28-27. Sergi Vidal found a open four-meter jumper to give Tau some fresh air, while Scola stepped up with a second-chance basket which gave his team a 30-31 edge. Tau got some help off the bench from Roberto Gabini, who took over with a left-handed layup off a steal, and Andrew Betts, who scored in the paint to give Tau a 31-35 lead. That didn't slow CSKA, as Monya made another corner three-pointer while Papaloukas dunked it to give the hosts a lead again, 36-35. A red hot Gabini became the unexpected factor for Tau off the bench, as he nailed a catch-and-shoot triple to put his team back in charge, 36-38. Tau stayed in the game due to its bench depth, as hardly any starters were in the game. Gabini now buried a six-meter jumper while Prigioni added a fastbreak layup to keep Tau ahead, 37-42. Betts turned a jump hook into a three-point play that capped a 0-7 run and gave Tau a 37-45 edge. Brown tried to change things for CSKA with a tough jumper but Vidal delivered a fast break layup for a 40-47 Tau margin at halftime.

Tau started the third quarter at full speed, as Scola fired in a mid-range jumper that Prigioni followed with a drivijng basket to boost their lead to 40-51. CSKA went scoreless for more than 3 minutes, as Tau's defense was more aggressive with most of its starters - all but Calderon - back on court. CSKA tried to solve its offensive problems with a timeout, but Tau continued powering the offensive boards and playing strong defense. Even with that, Tau faced severe foul trouble once Scola returned to the bench due to a blocking foul, his fourth. Andersen made a short jumper and Holden added free throws to pull CSKA within 44-51. David came to the rescue for Tau with a four-meter jumper, but Holden beat the shot clock with a three-pointer to bring CSKA even closer, 47-52, midway through the third. The foul situation got worse for Tau once Splitter committed his fourth, while David already had three. Despite a Tau timeout, CSKA kept rolling, forcing a 24-second violation on Tau while Brown capped a 6-0 run with an uncontested three that made it, 51-53. Calderon answered with a driving layup while Macijauskas came off a screen to nail a catch-and-shoot three which gave Tau some fresh air at 51-58. Andersen followed Brown's driving basket with a layup and Holden canned a five-meter jumper that got CSKA within 57-58. Macijauskas took over with a fallaway jumper, but Holden answered with another long jumper for a 59-60 Tau lead after 30 minutes.

Brown managed to put CSKA back in charge, 61-60, with a floating layup early in the fourth quarter. Scola immediately came off the bench and scored in the paint to keep his team alive, as the game turned intense. Prigioni beat the shot clock with a critical three-pointer, but Scola was fouled out right after that. CSKA struggled to score now, but Tau failed to break the game, as Macijauskas and Calderon missed consecutive threes. The game turned into a real thriller once a short jumper by Macijauskas went in and out while Betts had a huge block on Holden in the other end. Coach Dusan Ivkovic asked for a timeout with 5:36 to go, but both teams carried on struggling to score for more than 2 minutes. Betts conquered a key offensive rebound which allowed Calderon to fire in a big three-pointer and give Tau a six-point lead, 62-68. David had already started to seal the defensive boards for Tau. Meanwhile, Macijauskas capped a 0-8 run which a driving layup which gave his team a 52-60 margin with under 4 minutes to go. Papaloukas slashed for a layup, but Macijauskas provided the play of the day. Tau inbounded the ball with a single second on the shot clock, but enough for him to nail an incredible three from the opposite corner to make it a nine-point game, 64-73, already in the final 3 minutes. Dikoudis revived CSKA with a close basket, but the hosts carried on struggling from the free throw line. Meanwhile, a second-chance by David sealed the outcome, 66-75, with under 2 minutes to go. Around 1,000 Tau fans had started to celebrate, especially once Brown missed 2 free throws and David delivered a huge dunk which sent Tau to its first Euroleague title game.

Friday, May 6, 2005
Javier Gancedo, Euroleague.net, Moscow
No results found.
Attendance: 13607
By Quarter1234
CSKA Moscow17231919
Tau Ceramica Vitoria-Gasteiz25221325
End of Quarter1234
CSKA Moscow17405978
Tau Ceramica Vitoria-Gasteiz25476085
CSKA Moscow
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 PAPALOUKAS, THEODOROS 13:15 9 4/5   1/3 1   1 2   2     3 2 6
5 BROWN, MARCUS 35:15 12 4/5 1/6 1/4   3 3 5   5     4 9 11
6 PANOV, SERGEY 11:00     0/1   1 2 3   1       1 1 3
7 ANDERSEN, DAVID 28:30 10 5/9   0/3 3 4 7 1 1 2   1 2 4 11
9 DIKOUDIS, DIMOS 17:00 13 6/9   1/4 3 2 5   2       4 2 12
10 HOLDEN, JR 34:45 20 2/8 4/10 4/6 1 2 3 1 1     1 3 2 9
11 PASHUTIN, ZAKHAR DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
12 MONIA, SERGEY 13:00 6 0/2 2/6   2 3 5 1 1       2   5
13 MUURSEPP, MARTIN 12:00 3 1/1 0/3 1/4 2 2 4     2       3 2
14 SAVRASENKO, ALEKSEY 10:15         2 1 3       1       4
21 GRANGER, ANTONIO 25:00 5   1/4 2/4 1 2 3     1     3 3 2
23 ZAVOUREV, VASILY DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Team           1 4 5   3 1         7
Totals 200:00 78 22/39 8/30 10/28 17 25 42 10 9 13 1 2 22 26 72
        56.4% 26.7% 35.7%
Head coach: IVKOVIC, DUSAN
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
Tau Ceramica Vitoria-Gasteiz
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 SCOLA, LUIS 20:30 10 5/11   0/2 2 2 4 2 1 2     5 2 4
5 PRIGIONI, PABLO 24:15 9 2/2 1/3 2/2   4 4 5 1       2 1 16
6 HANSEN, TRAVIS 12:00 3 0/2 1/2     2 2 2 2       2 1 5
7 MACIJAUSKAS, ARVYDAS 32:45 23 5/7 2/7 7/7   3 3 3 3 3     1 8 29
8 CALDERON, JOSE 27:00 13 2/4 2/7 3/5 1 2 3 1   1       5 12
9 VIDAL, SERGI 16:45 4 2/3       2 2 2 2           9
13 CONLEY, ROBERT DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
18 DAVID, KORNEL 31:15 11 4/6   3/4 3 9 12 1     1   3 3 22
21 SPLITTER, TIAGO 14:00         1 3 4 1 1 1 1 1 5 1 1
22 GABINI, ROBERTO 8:30 7 2/3 1/1     2 2   1 1     3   5
51 BETTS, ANDY 13:00 5 2/4   1/1 1 1 2           5 1 1
Team                   2 1     1    
Totals 200:00 85 24/42 7/20 16/21 8 30 38 17 13 9 2 1 27 22 104
        57.1% 35% 76.2%
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Head Coaches

CSKA Moscow
"Congratulation for them. Tonight Tau was better than us and they deserve to stay in the final. It’s been a difficult game, in which I felt my players being under pressure. They haven’t played their usual game and it’s clear we felt pressure because we didn’t close any fastbreak, we didn’t score easy points in first 39 minutes and served just 10 assist. At the end of the third it was a 1-point game but look to our free-throw percentage. We were not mentally prepared, we were mentally tired. It doesn’t last anything more than keeping working for our League. I just want to congratulate my team for the Euroleague season they have played. It is our third consecutive presence in the Final Four and we have to work hard, while finding reasons for tonight’s game. I wish all the best to TAU and Maccabi. Was it a painful night? We always tried to do the best and it’s obviously painful, but it’s difficult to make out a serious analysis here in press conference. I tried to use experienced players, like Holden, Brown and Papaloukas, trying to keep balance between frontline and backcourt, but the matter is more general and it could be explained with pressure. My job was carrying this team to the Final Four. We did it three times and I think it’s a great job for whole CSKA. But now, the better teams are in final."
Tau Ceramica Vitoria-Gasteiz
“In last two years we loss four straight games against CSKA, and this record could help us to improve in facing them. We gained experience and defense, while Moscow missed a lot of free throws – a signal of pressure. In first half, my players showed we could play tonight and I find two keys: the Gabini’s entry in the game and our two playmakers down the stretch. We worked great in defense tonight, without losing concentration, but it’s not time to celebrate. We arrived here to win the title, not to win one game only. Our bench player? Every player of my team work during the week and is ready to play. Which book was I reading before the tip off? Milan Kundera’s Identity. The game waiting is a difficult moment, in which I use to leave the players alone in the locker room. So, instead to stay alone, staying with a book is better.”


CSKA Moscow
"We didn't play good today. Tau played more organized and better. Now nobody cares about our almost perfect record. The history books will tell that the final will be Maccabi-Tau. The best two teams are in the final, I'm not looking for excuses. We missed too many free throws and we didn't play like we usually play."
CSKA Moscow
"Tau won this game, they played harder, played faster and shot better. I think they were more aggressive in offense and defense. W had a couple of good minutes but this is not enough to win these games. Maybe pressure made us miss free throws but I don't know what happened. If I knew what it was, it would have not happened. They were more concentrated. The final is now 50-50."
Tau Ceramica Vitoria-Gasteiz
"We were a dangerous team for the Final Four. We were so angry, because everybody said the final is Maccabi and CSKA. It's not that easy. We played really good the last two months, we practiced good, we made the good defense the coach wanted, great offense, and now we will be there. The bench was great today. Everybody who played went to the court and was ready to die on the court."
Tau Ceramica Vitoria-Gasteiz
"We have to face the final game against Maccabi with the same confidence we had against CSKA. The team did a great work even when we were in foul trouble. This is just another step to make it to the final. We are happy, but like I said, this is just a step and now we are in the Final. I came out to thank our fans first before anything else. We have to thank them, they came all the way from Vitoria to support us."
Tau Ceramica Vitoria-Gasteiz
"We always believed in our chances to reach the final. We played concentrated all 40 minutes, with the right attitude. Everything went well for us today. All four teams in here are great ones, but everyone can beat anybody in a final. Maccabi is a good teams, full of good players like Parker, Jasikevicius or Baston. We won't celebrate this win, just dinner all together and that's it. We have to play the biggest game ever on Sunday. We have to be ready to give our best, and play the way we played tonight. They got too many offensive rebounds, but they played good defense, making them take tough shots and play the way the way they don't want to play. We have seen everything from Macijauskas, so that three-pointer he made doesn't surprise us. It is just one of the best shooters in Europe."
Tau Ceramica Vitoria-Gasteiz
"This is the best team I've ever been on as far as guys getting along is concerned. Everybody's happy for one another. We got a great team where everybody can play and everybody can contribute. When you have everybody playing like that, we're hard to beat."
Tau Ceramica Vitoria-Gasteiz
"This is just what we expected, but it is just one step of the two we have take. We have to take it step by step. Of course, being able to beat the hosting team and then move on to lose the final would be unbelievable for us. We knew the game would come down to the final minutes, in which we have to finish our work and reach the final. We have been through this experience four times in the last two years and we learnt from it. We were able to stop Brown and Holden, even when he scored more than he was expected. The most important thing was staying calmed and that is what we did. There were a lot of Tau fans, but the team was focused in what was happening on court. They are unbelievable, they follow us everywhere and I cannot be thankful enough. Now we are in the final and we have to give out best to win. Maccabi is a very good team, but we have to be calmed. Anyone can beat anyone in a single game. Kornel (David) rebounded really well in the final period, but everyone who came off the bench: Roberto (Gabini), (Andrew) Betts... everyone."
Tau Ceramica Vitoria-Gasteiz
"We played really well, we knew we had to prevent them from getting fast break points, then they took tough shots when it mattered. We stepped up big when we were in foul trouble, we managed to solve that problem. They didn't play their best game, but we can also play better. Actually, we will have to play better to beat Maccabi. We knew we were ahead in the final minutes and had more confidence from the free throw line. We have to be quiet, we have practice tomorrow and we have to plau the final on Sunday."