During the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague action on Friday, Fenerbahce and Olympiacos booked their Play-Offs berth to join already qualified CSKA Moscow. Current champs Fenerbahce downed Zalgiris Kaunas on the road, while Olympiacos was at ease against Brose Bamberg at home. As for CSKA, the league leaders smashed Unicaja Malaga in Moscow, while elsewhere Barcelona put Crvena Zvezda Belgrade to the sword.
CSKA Moscow vs. Unicaja Malaga, 101-76
CSKA Moscow continued its march towards winning the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague with a destructive win over Unicaja Malaga. The Russians have a 20-5 record and need just three more games to top the standings at the end of the season. As for Malaga, the EuroCup champs dropped to 10-15 and a three games off the Play-Offs with five to play. The hosts dominated this game and scored a massive 57 points in the first half alone. From there it was easy sailing as Malaga rarely threatened the deficit.
Zalgiris Kaunas vs. Fenerbahce Dogus Istanbul, 78-85
Reigning Turkish Airlines EuroLeague champs Fenerbahce look among the most likely to challenge CSKA this season. The Istanbul giant qualified for the Play-Offs with a solid road win over high-flying Zalgiris Kaunas to tie second place (18-7) with Olympiacos. Zalgiris is still well in the hunt for the next round at 15-10 in fourth place. The hosts will rue a missed opportunity as Zalgiris lead 60-52 in the fourth quarter and looked on for the win. However, Fener managed a 33-point haul in the deciding frame to snatch the comeback.
Olympiacos Piraeus vs. Brose Bamberg, 87-79
A typically efficient win for Olympiacos allowed the Greek club to claim a home win over Brose Bamberg and tie up its qualification to the Play-Offs. Olympiacos is now at 18-7 with Fenerbahce, while Bamberg’s time is running out. The German champs have a 9-16 record and need miracles to progress from here. The home team looked in control for long periods and led for most the game, although Bamberg remained in touch. A 9-0 third act flurry allowed Olympiacos to open a 13-point lead and the Piraeus club never looked back.
FC Barcelona Lassa vs. Crvena Zvezda Belgrade,
Barcelona crushed Crvena Zvezda Belgrade in a game where one club was going to snap an awful record. Barca had lost its last five games while Crvena Zvezda has not won in four on the road. We can now make that five as the Serbian giant dented its hope of qualification with a subpar performance. Crvena Zvezda is now at 10-15, three games behind 8th-place occupier Maccabi Tel Aviv. Barcelona is all but out of the running despite finally clicking, the Spanish former champ is second from last with an 8-17 record.