Round 26 of the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague continued on Thursday after Real Madrid opened the round with a win over Milan on Tuesday. During this evening of action, the games became ever more exciting as the regular season winds down and teams hunt those all-important play-off positions.
Crvena Zvezda Belgrade vs. Valencia Basket, 106-90
An excellent encounter in Belgrade allowed Crvena Zvezda to keep its Turkish Airlines EuroLeague play-off hopes alive. Victory for the hosts moved them to 11-15, one game off Maccabi Tel Aviv in the 8th and final qualification berth. As for Valencia, its 9-17 record does not put the club out of the running, but miracles will need to happen for progression. It is notable that Crvena Zvezda bested its points record for the EuroLeague with this haul.
Brose Bamberg vs. Anadolu Efes Istanbul, 88-79
From worse to worse for Anadolu Efes as the already eliminated team fell further behind at the bottom of the standings with a 6-20 record. As for Bamberg, the German champs moved to 10-16 and is clinging on to dreams of qualification. Efes was in the game, just three points back (44-41) at halftime, but Bamberg used a handy 25-14 third act to pull away for good and ease down the stretch to victory.
Olympiacos Piraeus vs. FC Barcelona Lassa, 63-90
Where has this Barcelona been? With the pressure off, Barcelona has ignited in recent weeks and today destroyed Turkish Airlines EuroLeague high-flyer Olympiacos. The chances of Barca qualifying are slim (but not impossible), with the club improving to 9-17, while already through Olympiacos drops to 18-8. Barcelona would need to streak wins until the end of the season and hope many teams above drop games. It isn’t going to happen.
Maccabi Fox Tel Aviv vs. Khimki Moscow Region, 91-94
Maccabi Tel Aviv holds the 8th and final play-off position, so all clubs are gunning for the Israeli giant. A loss here gives many teams hope and drops Tel Aviv to 13-13, just a game ahead of the chasing pack. Indeed, a win for Baskonia would see the Spanish team take over Maccabi on head-to-heads. Khimki moved closer to qualification with this win, improving to 15-11.