After 11 rounds of action in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague, Anadolu Efes Istanbul has emerged as the solo leader with an impressive 9-2 record. They secured their ninth win of the season after a 104-75 blowout victory over FC Bayern Muenchen on Friday night.
Efes’ lead is a slim one at best right now with two Spanish Juggernauts hot on their tails in the form of FC Barcelona Lassa and Real Madrid occupying the second and third spots in the standings, just one game behind Efes with 8-3 records.
After the two Spanish clubs is a who’s who of legitimate title contenders this season. Maccabi Fox Tel Aviv, CSKA Moscow, Panathinaikos Athens and AX Armani Milano all have 7-4 records and are all veritable threats to claim that pole position at one point or another this season.
For now, the King of the Hill title is a well-earned mantle resting on the shoulders of one of Turkey’s most elite ballclubs.
For their latest win, two words can describe the dismantling of their guests from Munich.
The former NBA guard smashed EuroLeague records on Friday night with a 10-for-12 shooting from beyond the 3-point arc to finish with a career-high 45 points. It was crazy. He was just simply unconscious as he made shot after shot, after shot, after shot…
Obviously, this was an outlying performance, not something to be duplicated in the foreseeable future. Still, it must warm the hearts of the Efes organization, Larkin’s teammates and Larkin himself that he is capable of taking over a game like that and simply outgunning their opponents into hapless submission.
After Larkin, Efes’ next highest scorer was Serlac Sanli with 17 points.
Bayern Muenchen was led by Vladimir Lucic who scored 20 points.
Efes is a dangerous team, especially with an equally dangerous player in Larkin. However, they’re in for some tough competition as always in the EuroLeague as all of the top-8 teams have skilled and talented weapons on their rosters. So one thing’s for sure, it’s going to be fun and must-watch basketball as these 10-12 teams battle it out for post-season berths.