This is an entertaining match of Euroleague between Baskonia Vitoria — Gasteiz and Zalgiris Kaunas, at Fernando Buesa Arena, Vitoria. It is an interesting match, so please review our thoughts here below.
Currently, Baskonia is standing in the 8th place of the Euroleague’s standings (11-12) and are looking to stay in this playoffs picture. Lately, Baskonia was playing pretty well as they have won 4 of their last 6 games. Vitoria is a good offensive team as they average 81ppg and among Euroleague’s teams, ranks in the 6th place in this category. Defensively, they are quite solid, as in last 6 games Baskonians did not allow more than 75 points. Vitoria has many injury problems. Two of their main players in Tornike Shengelia and Jayson Granger are missing many games and won’t play in this one as well. But it looks like Baskonia has figured it out and are in the playoff picture, even though they are missing a couple of good players. Probably, the main reason for this is the depth of this team.
Even 7 players of Baskonian’s roster averages more than 7 points per game. Also, Vitoria plays physical basketball and gets 34.9 rebounds per game and ranks in the 7 place in this category. Baskonia’s leaders this season: Matt Janning (11ppg, 2apg), Vincent Poirier (11ppg, 7.6rpg), Darrun Hilliard (9.3ppg, 2.7rpg). In home games, Baskonia is playing pretty well and are 7-3.
Currently, Zalgiris is standing in the 13th place (9-14) of the Euroleague’s standings. In the second half of the season, Kaunas has got some big problems. They have won only 3 of their last 10 games and it looks like it is almost impossible for them to make the playoffs. On the other hand, Zalgiris won last game against Buducnost and it looked like they have figured it out on both ends of the floor. Recently, Zalgiris fired their point guard Derrick Walton Jr. due to “not making up to expectations”. Nate Wolters, one of the leaders of Kaunas, is questionable for this game because of the groin injury. This would be a huge loss for Zalgiris as Wolters controls offense very well, passes nicely and is able to score by himself.
Zalgiris is not a very good offensive team as they score only 77.9 points per game and ranks in the 13th place in this category. Marius Grigonis has been on fire lately. He’s been leading his team in crunch time and is always ready to make a clutch shot if needed. Overall, Zalgiris does not have one main leader. Probably we are able to name 4 main players, but you can always expect for something unexpected — almost every player can step up and play a 20-point game. Zalgiris leaders this season: Brandon Davies (14.3ppg, 5.6rpg, 2apg), Nate Wolters (12.2ppg, 4.6apg, 3rpg), Aaron White (8.7ppg, 4.6rpg), Marius Grigonis (8.2ppg, 1.9apg, 46.2% 3FG%). In away games, Kaunas is struggling (4-6).
These teams saw each other only 1 time this season and it actually was a 1st game of the season for both teams. Baskonia won at Kaunas with a result 79-87. A lot of things have changed over the course of the season. Former Baskonia’s coach Pedro Martinez was fired and removed with Velimir Perasovic. Jayson Granger and Tornike Shengelia led their teams to victory, but now they are injured. On the Zalgiris camp, Kaunas is not making it up to the expectations as last season they went to Final Four and won the 3rd place. This year is different and in the middle of the season, Zalgiris has lost his rhythm. Overall, we are going to see a very interesting, competitive game, of two teams that have changed a lot over the course of the season.
Article Image Taken from twitter.com/bczalgiris/status/789379915128901632