Turkish Airlines EuroLeague: Cream Rises to the Top

Turkish Airlines EuroLeague The Turkish Airlines EuroLeague closed out Round 2 of its 2018-19 regular season on October 17th with four games and boy did they live up to expectations. Only four teams remain undefeated with 2-0 records and they are CSKA Moscow, Fenerbahce Istanbul, Olympiacos and Real Madrid.  A veritable who’s who of the top teams across Europe. They represent some of the best basketball organizations and programs in the game today, so it should come as no surprise that they instantly have risen to the top of the league standings.

AX Armani 85-91 Real Madrid

Real Madrid came through with an epic comeback from a double-digit deficit to keep their pristine record in the EuroLeague intact (2-0). Facundo Campazzo came through in the clutch for his team when they needed him most and the defending champions sneak off with a win in Milan, 91-85. Walter Tavares also was instrumental on the defensive end as he made sure that Real Madrid was able to close out the gap and eventually secure the lead, and the win.

At the end of the day, Anthony Randolph’s imposing presence in the low post made an impact. He finished with a big double-double, recording 25 points and 11 boards for the winners.

Armani’s duo of Mike James and Vladimir Micov led the way for Armani with 21 and 20 points, respectively.

Baskonia Gasteiz 80-85 Olympiacos Piraeus

The Greek Powerhouse continued on their road-win streak, downing another formidable opponent in Baskonia. This win boiled down to Nikola Milutinov’s ability to bully the Baskonian defense into submission. He racked up 23 points and collected 11 boards to his name. His aggressiveness on both ends of the floor set the tone for the win, as he led four other teammates to score in double figures. Vassilis Spanoulis made sure that everyone got in on the action via his eight assists for the night.

As expected, Tornike Shenegalia played well for the Spanish club. He had an impressive game as well, posting 21 points on 7-of-10 shooting from 2-point range.

Fenerbahce Istanbul 93-85 Khimki Moscow Region

Fenerbahce successfully defended their home court in this one, thanks to the masterful guidance of coach Zeljko Obradovic. The franchise has been one of Europe’s most dangerous teams ever since they signed him on to take the helm. So far, so good. Unfortunately, for Khimki Moscow Region they now fall to 0-2 and are second to the last in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague standings.

Fenerbahce played a team fully in sync when it came to offense. Their passes were on point and everyone played unselfishly, which of course translated into a well-deserved win. Six of their players scored in double figures, led by Nicolo Melli’s 16 points. Their combined efforts were more than enough to stave off a 26-point monster of a game from Khimki’s Alexey Shved who went on a tear from beyond the 3-point arc, connecting on 7-of-12 shots from deep.

Anadolu Efes 79-93 B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas

The Lithuanian Juggernauts ran away with this road win thanks to some very impressive shooting on their part. Brandon Davies and Leo Westermann combined for 35 points to lead the green machine to victory. This was the first win for Zalgiris in their 2018-19 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague campaign, so they have something to celebrate now that they’re on the board with a notch in the win column.

The game was close in the early goings. After the halftime break Zalgiris turned up the heat and revved their way to with a 2-13 run, stunning their hosts. Anadolu Efes would mount a comeback in the fourth quarter but it was not enough to cut into the advantage that was well defended by Zalgiris, allowing the visitors to seal the deal.

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