Round 15 of the VTB United League 2015/2016 season saw the top two in the standings consolidate their positions with cruising victories. League leader and winner of the last five VTB United seasons, CSKA Moscow, crushed fourth placed Avtodor Saratov on the road to highlight the gulf in class even at the tip.
Second placed Unics Kazan also impressed with a massive win over sixth place Zenit St. Petersburg in Kazan, a surprising result considering how well Zenit has been playing at home and abroad this campaign. In the other two contests that opened Round 15 on Sunday, CEZ Nymburk righted its recent slide with a home win over Nizhny Novgorod, while Krasny Oktyabr Volgograd won on the road against Enisey.
Avtodor Saratov vs. CSKA Moscow, 72-91
VTB United League leaders CSKA Moscow had little to worry about during a Sunday afternoon stroll in Saratov, downing the hosts with a consistent all-round game. CSKA looked to the bench to provide the firepower, with the supplement players grabbing 59 of the Army Men’s points. The game was rarely in doubt as the Euroleague giant controlled long spells of the contest, including a 15 point run and leading by as much as 22 points.
Milos Teodosic topped the winners with 22 points, while Andrey Vorontsevich added 17 points and Cory Higgins 16 points.
Paul Stoll led Avtodor with 21 points.
CEZ Nymburk vs. Nizhny Novgorod, 76-70
Early season pace setters CEZ Nymburk have slipped away in recent weeks, but the Czech champion topped Nizhny Novgorod to get back on track this week. Once again the bench played a huge role, plundering 63 of Nymburk’s total haul, allowing the hosts to stay one step ahead down the straight. It was a tight game, with 7 lead changes and 5 ties, but ultimately Nymburk celebrated in front of its own fans.
Michael Dixon was huge with 35 points in the victory game, while also adding 6 rebounds and 4 assists.
Victor Rudd kept the visitors in touch with 30 points.
Unics Kazan vs. Zenit St. Petersburg, 101-66
Unics Kazan turned it on to break a century of points and demolish Zenit at home. It was a stunning display by the hosts as they hit 55 points in the first half to lead by 23 points through the long break. It was a formality from there as the Kazan club dominated the stats, leading by as much as 37 points and holding the scoreboard advantage from the opening bucket to the final buzzer.
Five players registered double figures for the winning team, led by Artsiom Parahouski with 20 points. Keith Langford added 19 points for Unics.
Anton Pushkov led the losing effort with 15 points.
Enisey Krasnoyarsk vs. Krasny Oktyabr Volgograd, 86-94
Krasny Oktyabr got back to winning ways with a solid road success at the expense of Enisey on Sunday. The visitors were swamped in the first half and trailed 55-36 as the midway buzzer sounded. Krasny responded in the second half with huge offensive plays, winning the third act 16-31 and the deciding frame 15-27 to complete a wonderful comeback that saw the visitors drain 58 points in the second half.
Ekene Ibekwe led the victory celebrations thanks to his 18 points, while Jerry Jefferson was good for 16 points.
Alexey Vzdykhalkin and Denis Zakharov both scored 17 points for Enisey.