Zenit Saint Petersburg makes EuroLeague playoff history in Game 1 vs FC Barcelona

Zenit Saint Petersburg upset FC Barcelona on the road in Game 1 on Wednesday night (74-76) and made EuroLeague playoff history.

In their first-ever EuroLeague playoffs game, the Russians stunned the Catalans and claimed their first-ever win in EuroLeague postseason.

Zenit was in control for the majority of the night and led by as many as 17 points (29-46) and 14 at halftime (34-48).

FC Barcelona fought back, though, and tied the game at 74. Kevin Pangos put the visitors in front by two, though, with 19 seconds to go.

Cory Higgins had the chance to win the match for the hosts, but he missed the three-pointer at the buzzer. As a result, Zenit stole the home-court advantage (0-1), whereas FC Barcelona will now attempt to even the EuroLeague playoff series.

“We know it is almost impossible to beat Barcelona in three matches, but at least, to start like this in this playoff, it makes us very happy,” Zenit head coach Xavi Pascual said afterwards.

Game 2 of the EuroLeague playoff series between the two clubs will take place on Friday at “Palau Blaugrana”.

CSKA Moscow was unstoppable in the final part of Game 1 against Fenerbahce and took the upper hand in the EuroLeague playoff series.

Trailing by two early in the fourth quarter, the Muscovites outscored the Turks 28-10 and cruised to an easy home victory (92-76).

For their part, in the opener of their best-of-five EuroLeague playoff series, the visitors came up short in the end and are now trailing in the series (1-0).

Nando De Colo paced Fenerbahce with 27 points against his former team, but was scoreless in the fourth quarter. The Turks had to play without five players and head coach Igor Kokoskov, due to the coronavirus.

In addition, star center Jan Vesely remained out with ankle injury, but he is expected to be ready for Game 3 next week.

“It’s the playoffs. It was a tough game. You felt it out there. You knew exactly what everybody was playing for and I expect that to be all series,” CSKA star forward Will Clyburn said afterwards, via the official website of the EuroLeague.

Game 2 between the two EuroLeague powerhouses will take place in Moscow on Friday.

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