The 2017 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague has two clubs in the Final Four after CSKA Moscow and Fenerbahce Istanbul eased into the showpiece event. Both clubs swept their respective series, no mean feat considering the quality of all clubs at this stage of the competition.
Fenerbahce Istanbul vs. Panathinaikos Athens, 79-61
Fenerbahce waltzed into the Final Four for the third consecutive season with a convincing win over Panathinaikos in Istanbul. Indeed, the whole Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Play-Off series has been impressive from the Turkey champions. After winning two consecutive games on the road in Athens, Fener wrapped it up in style in front of its own fans.
The first quarter was close as the hosts carved out a slender 18-17 advantage. Panathinaikos dropped in the second frame, allowing Fenerbahce to claim a 19-13 run and a 37-30 lead through halftime. The home team had momentum and used it in the third act to extend to 52-42 through thirty minutes. Needing to make a double-digit deficit, the pressure was on the guests from Athens, but the Greek giant could not fight back as the hosts drained 27 points in Q4.
Bobby Dixon paced the win with 13 points, while James Nunnally added 12 points. Ekpe Udoh, Bogdan Bogdanovic, and Luigi Datome all scored 10 points.
K.C. Rivers led the losing effort with a game-high 16 points, with Chris Singleton claiming 12 points.
Baskonia Vitoria vs. CSKA Moscow, 88-90
CSKA Moscow sealed its place in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Final Four and the defending champs remain on course to retain their title. After winning twice at home last week, CSKA was in a good position but needed a victory in Spain. The Army Men achieved that to progress.
Baskonia will likely feel a chance has been missed. Each game has been very close and came down to fine margins. In Game 3 the hosts were 44-43 in front before CSKA Moscow took charge of the tie with a 29-point haul in the third quarter. The game went to the wire, but the visitors managed to hold on and claim the win.
Cory Higgins topped the win with 21 points, followed by Nando De Colo with 15 points and Milos Teodosic with 13 points.
Tornike Shengelia paced Baskonia with 19 points, while Chase Budinger claimed 15 points.