Shame on Fal, shame on Peters, shame on Kanaan, shame on the world, but Baskonia made the simple look simpler and got a big win for it, leaving the “red and whites” introspective and thinking about the future . Pantelis Diamantopoulos writes
Last year at this time, Olympiacos had already made sure to spread terror in basketball Europe.
A year later, the picture is different. No one is afraid of the “red and whites”, the reflection is intense, the world is worried and the future is not predicted to be easy. The composure of Giorgos Bartzokas is the surest thing that exists at this moment in Piraeus. His recent statements at media day show his composure and that he supports his material and if he gets a player (he didn’t say he won’t) it will be someone who will do his job and not just a transfer to be discussed in the journalists and the world.
With all this, Olympiacos is a team that is in danger of losing its self-confidence, if this has not already happened. And this weekend, even Baskonia was able to leave the Peace and Friendship tournament smiling and victorious. The “even Baskonia“, it has nothing to do with this year’s situation of the team from the Basque country. Not even with the change of coach and the return of the man who is the most successful coach in their history. It has to do with the fact that historically the team that Baskonia has been tortured the most in SEF. Many defeats and bad performances. But now, they escaped…
And Olympiacos helped her a lot in escaping. With bad choices and obsessions in attacks that had neither logic nor balance. Shame on Fal and Peters… And shame on the people who played… balls to see the match won by the worst player in this match, the opponents’ player. That’s how sports are…
Alec and keepers
When the match started, of course, the escape was not in sight. On the contrary, in fact… And I will also describe to you a scene: Ivanovic could not bear to wait even a few seconds. As soon as he saw the second turnover of the ball up by his players, which led to a layup by Canaan and the score became 13-2, he called a timeout. If another attack was waiting for his players, the match would have been interrupted due to the needs of the television. But he was sure that they would do “potatoes” again, he couldn’t stand it and called them to sing them.
Baskonia entered the match as they have appeared in the competition, only after a while they changed it. Her image is limited for five minutes. Responsible for the harm that the guests suffered in the beginning, he was a man who ate bread in Vitoria having great evenings. He entered the match ruthlessly and aimed from everywhere. Peters was just the tip of a three-point iceberg that overwhelmed Baskonia.
The “red and whites” finished the quarter with over 50% shooting from 6.75. And Bartzokas could see his players playing well up front and winning six points only, because quite simply, they gave rights and plenty of space, trying to press.
Baskonia had a defense against them that did not close that well. The hosts had confidence in their two… goalkeepers, but Fal played too-too much giving everything and Milutinov not enough since he still hasn’t recovered. They couldn’t cut everything. And the guests started the good shots. What can be more clear than that the Basques put 50 (!) in the half gaining psychology from one point onwards.
The absolute nightmare
So, a little bit of Sendekerrskis and more of Moneke (what kind of player is she?) helped enough to change the scene, to force Olympiacos, to stress the field and to force Fundedakis to take our ears screaming “come and play defense “. It’s as if if he screams, he won’t score a basket if the opponent “builds” a proper attack. Let alone that every time he screams, Olympiakos eats a basket nine times out of ten. And where the first period showed that Baskonia would find them in spades, as soon as the security connections with the basket ended, the “red and white” began to make mistakes and look for solutions frivolously.
The second quarter was an absolute nightmare. Because what you read above is no longer valid. Ivanovic with that infamous tie out had not only woken up his players, but had managed to make them take out his own basketball. Until Papanikolaou hit a 3-pointer with 12 minutes left in the half, Baskonia had a 6-31 split score in the second quarter. With defense – Ivanovic and incredible psychology in scoring. And of course, let Moneke do whatever he wants…
The ball to Peters bro!!!
Olympiacos entered the second half with two “hot” players. One was the people who took it patriotically and came forward. The other, it was Kanaan who started shooting from everywhere keeping the team in the game. These two… poles were also the reasons why the difference fell to seven, when the match entered its final stretch. It was a great counterattack by Olympiakos, which took off in the last quarter. Everything was covered. But those who argue that there was absolutely no reason for the match to reach -18 and then run away are right. Because let’s be honest, if there was a more prepared team in Baskonia’s position, such a match might never have happened.
Bartzokas played with Kanaan – Larentzakis and Walkup and the attacks of the last few minutes were not all done as they should have been. To be fair, most. No peace. Even accurate shots, they had the wrong “build”.
He could three times get the puck to Peters (play with Monecke or a shorter in transitions or shoot) and instead, we saw panic threes from the short guys. And finally the ball went to Peters for a 72-71 lead after a long, long time. Bad choices followed again in the second minute, Larentzakis went to win the match with two shots, but Miller-McIntyre came to score his second basket, in a tragic for the same night and become the hero of the match. Olympiacos did not have a single short pass in the last seven tenths. And he went to do something extreme with Fal.
He doesn’t deserve it but…
Olympiakos doesn’t deserve to spend such nights, but no one is to blame. Beyond the “build” of the summer and the injuries, it’s also how you play. And really ending a match and having made many bad choices in a match where there is no room for error is something that hurts more.
Fal was touching, and so was Peters. It’s also not possible for Kanaan to have a night like this and the team lose. Absent a stable pole of attack, when you have two players with 23 and 22 points, in your headquarters, it is good to win. But I repeat, there is an explanation for everything and now Olympiacos will have to find a way to get this bad defeat off their shoulders.