A loss, but still with an advantage...

The “reds” lost in Madrid for the second time this season for the Euroleague, but nevertheless, remained at the top of the group since they outrank Real at goal-average.

The “reds” lost in Madrid for the second time this season for the Euroleague, but nevertheless, remained at the top of the group since they outrank Real at goal-average.

Dusan Ivkovic’ players had a bad evening mainly due to their defense and allowed the Spanish team to control the rhythm from the beginning and gain a significant lead. The “reds” reacted in the second and third quarter of the game, but also in the beginning of the fourth one and closed the margin to six, but while they had the chance to turn the game, made some easy mistakes due to lack of concentration and Real regained control.

The end of the game was a small thriller, since Real took the lead to 16 points (82-66), that is the same as the one in the first game between the two teams in the Peace and Friendship Stadium. Vassilis Spanoulis closed the difference (82-68) with two free throws 9.6’’ before the end of the game and Garbajosa missed the last shot for Real leaving the lead of the group to Olympiacos.

Τhe quarters: 24-14, 42-34, 58-50, 82-68
Real Madrid (Μessina): Τomic 12, Prigioni 3(1), Suarez 8(1), Reyes 10, Rodriguez 19(1), Velickovic, Garbajosa 5(1), Fischer 5, Llull 16(3), Tucker 4.
Οlympiacos (Ivkovic): Papaloukas 3, Nesterovic 10, Spanoulis 11, Bourousis 4, Κeselj 5(1), Mavrokefalides 10, Nielsen, Papanikolaou 4, Τeodosic 21(3), Halperin, Lucas.

The quotes…

DUSAN IVKOVIC: «Real was better without a doubt and deserved to win. We played bad defense in the first and last quarter, without communication, receiving 24 points. We made 15 turnovers and we only passed 10 assists. So, we need to work on the details of our offense. The only good thing was that we beat Real at offensive rebounding, doing so against a team that is better at this part of the game in the Euroleague. This shows that we had energy, but we had a problem communicating. We did not play well; we lacked concentration and communication among us. These are fundamentals especially when playing pick n’ roll. Real’s players are more experienced than the ones of Roma, so we cannot make comparisons, but we played very well in Rome. But we shouldn’t be getting in such detail.

The season is long. It’s not necessary, nor is it a great advantage to be first in the group. You get to play another 6 games when at Top-16 anyway. We hadn’t talked with the players about the 16 point margin, nor did I do so in the last time out. However, we had said we would be doing otherwise, and we did it all wrong. We said that we shouldn’t let them make a 3-pointer and that’s why we took Nesterovic out. I was surprised Garbajosa missed. But I will agree with Messina. The top ranking does not necessarily give you an advantage”.

ΜΑΤT NIELSEN: «We were terrible. We did nothing right. We played the strongest test of the season and we ranked 0. I think we have to study the game, see what we did wrong and how we can improve. We have still a long way ahead of us. Nevertheless, such losses make us determined to get better”.

It was the end of the '30s when the Olympiacos Basketball team was founded with players form the "Ionidio" School. Great personalities of Greek basketball wore the 'red' shirt, coaches wrote history, victories came and Olympiacos played a leading role inside and outside the Greek borders.

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