Round 21 of the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague was limited to four games as five others were postponed, but that did not lessen its impact, especially at the top of the standings. Barcelona (16-4) bounced back from two straight defeats to outlast, visiting Efes (9-10) at home and holding onto the highest victory total in the competition. However, real (15-3) stayed right on Barca’s heels by shutting down Baskonia (7-12) at home in Round 21’s final game. In between came the only road win of Round 21, Monaco ambushing Bayern to equal their records at 8-11, and the only double-round winner, CSKA (12-7), turning back ASVEL (8-10) to create a four-victory distance with the non-playoff teams. The other ten teams remain on hold until they get back to action and make up the games they missed this week.
CSKA Moscow 90-83 LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne
CSKA Moscow held off a big challenge from LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne, earning an entertaining 90-83 win in the Russian capital on Friday night. During the first half, there was nothing between the teams, which ended with CSKA leading 40-39. After a similarly close third quarter, it was 62-61 heading into the final period, which saw CSKA briefly surge into a double-digit lead before ASVEL fought back to keep it close until the end. Daniel Hackett was the chief inspiration for CSKA with 27 points, while Nikola Milutinov provided 12 points and nine rebounds. Alexey Shved scored 17, and Marius Grigonis added 16. ASVEL was led by a career-high 16 points from Marcos Knight. Elie Okobo added 15, James Gist scored 14, and Chris Jones contributed 12 in defeat. CSKA improves to 12-7, while ASVEL is now 8-10.
Real Madrid 89-74 Bitci Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz
Real Madrid comfortably overcame Bitci Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz, staying perfect at home with an 89-74 victory. Real came out flying on offense, reaching a 50-35 lead at the break. The advantage grew to 20 in the third quarter before Baskonia found some offensive rhythm to make it closer, but the outcome never really looked in doubt. Guerschon Yabusele scored 13 points in the first quarter and finished with 17 points and eight rebounds, while Anthony Randolph had a double-double of 13 points and 12 rebounds. Alberto Abalde scored 15, Vincent Poirier had 11, and Jeffery Taylor and Trey Thompkins both scored 10. Wade Baldwin IV paced Baskonia with 16 points, while Steven Enoch scored 11 and Rokas Giedraitis had 10. Real Madrid improves to 15-3 to keep a strong grip on second place, while Baskonia remains well adrift of the playoffs places at 7-12.