A number of Australian men produced noteworthy performances in Europe this week, with Turkish All-Star Ryan Broekhoff delivering a double-double, while Daniel Dillon flirted with a triple-double in Romania.
Ryan Broekhoff led Besiktas Integral Forex Istanbul with an impressive double-double in their unexpected 70-79 loss to ninth ranked Turk Telekom. Broekhoff shouldered a heavy workload for Besiktas, with the forward logging a season-high 38 minutes and contributing 15 points, 10 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 assists in a well-rounded performance. His outing was only blighted by a below average shooting night, shooting 5/13 from the field and 3/9 from behind the arc. The fact that this is a less than average shooting night from Broekhoff shows how well the sharpshooting swingman has performed thus far this season. Although, Besiktas’ poor three-point shooting was a constant throughout the match, with the hosts connecting on just 8/30.
Broekhoff was one of three Besiktas players to score in double digits in a disappointing performance in which Besiktas were devoid of a spark. Besiktas were out hustled on the glass, with Turk Telekom grabbing 37 rebounds compared to Besiktas’ 25. Besiktas were fresh off a big Eurocup victory over Neptunas Klaipeda and it appears that fatigue may have been issue, with players not physically or mentally recovered. It was the fourth consecutive domestic loss for Besiktas, a worrying trend which they will need to fix against Royal Hali Gaziantep.
Daniel Dillon produced a near triple-double for Romanian side CSM Oradea in a thrilling 84-83 victory over CSU Sibiu. Dillon did it all for Oradea with 17 points, 9 assists, 8 rebounds and a staggering 9 turnovers. Dillon was simply superb shooting the ball, shooting 8/10 from the floor. Though, Dillon was pushing very hard on offense and at times played with reckless abandon, consistent with his season as he averages 6.6 assists and 3.3 turnovers per game. Dillon likes to keep the ball moving however; sometimes he does too much, a product of his own play and the offensive system, as Oradea totaled 26 turnovers and just 2 steals.
It is a miracle that Oradea was able to win with 19 more turnovers than their opposition. They made up for their clumsy ball handling on the glass and by shooting an outstanding 62% from the floor for the game. Oradea will face their largest challenge in their next match against league leaders Steaua CSM in Bucharest.
In the French Pro A League, David Andersen’s ASVEL Lyon Villeurbanne produced a stunning performance to defeat reigning champions Limoges CSP Elite 79-81. ASVEL shocked Limoges with a resounding final quarter. Having trailed for most of the match, ASVEL entered the final term down by 11 points. However they closed out a thrilling contest with a 15-28 quarter. The difference down the stretch was ASVEL’s outside shooting, with the visitors managing just 1/11 from three-point range in the first three-quarters.
ASVEL turned around their troubles from outside in the final quarter, going on to shoot 4/7 from behind the arc to close out the game. In a high quality match, both teams handled the ball well and caused the opposing defence trouble with their offensive structures. Though, it was ASVEL that appeared hungrier throughout, as the underdogs out rebounded Limoges 37-23.
The good fortunes of ASVEL did not extend to Andersen unfortunately. The Australian veteran played just 15 minutes and added 6 points, 3 rebounds and 1 assist. The victory ensures that ASVEL move into 6th position on the league table, tied with four other teams. After defeating third-ranked Limoges, the task doesn’t get any easier for ASVEL, scheduled to play second-ranked Strasbourg IG next, Andersen’s former team.
In Spain, Chris Goulding is in the middle of a form slump for CAI Zaragoza. Goulding has averaged 13.6 points and 8.9 points per game in the Eurocup and Spanish ACB respectively. Yet, across his last 3 games Goulding has totaled just 8 points, 5 rebounds and 1 assist. In Zaragoza’s 72-83 loss to Iberostar Tenerife, Goulding scored 5 points, going 2/8 from the field and contributing just 2 rebounds with zero assists.
Goulding was a non-factor in an even encounter in which both teams had opportunities to surge ahead. Tenerife persisted with high volume shooting from behind the arc throughout the game despite shooting a mediocre 12/30. In response Zaragoza pushed hard throughout the contest and matched Tenerife in most aspects of the game. However, in the important moments it was Tenerife who performed and in the end that was the difference.
Zaragoza now sit in eighth position with a 10-9 record, with four teams deadlocked behind them with a 9-10 record. A victory in their next match with Seville is vital to ensure they keep a gap between the teams below them and remain in contention for playoffs.
Still in Spain, FC Barcelona completely and utterly decimated AJ Ogilvy’s lowly La Bruixa d’Or Manresa, in a 101-53 route. Barcelona was comprehensive from the start, restricting La Bruixa d’Or Manresa to just 4 first quarter points, before going on to lead 53-13 at the half. Barcelona shot an astounding 14/21 from behind the arc and 60% from the field, whilst also dominating the board 35-18. It was never going to be easy for Ogilvy, coming off the bench for an already deflated and defeated team. Ogilvy played 13 minutes and scored 3 points and 1 assist. It was a night to forget for La Bruixa d’Or Manresa and they will look to rebound against the formidable Bilbao Basket.
Nate Jawai played scored 5 points, 2 rebounds in the 13 minutes he played for Spanish ACB side Andorra, in their predictable 84-72 loss to fourth ranked Bilbao Basket. Andorra made life difficult for the favourites in the first half, at one stage opening up a 5 point lead. Later, Bilbao turned up the intensity in the fourth quarter, to run out easy victors with a 28-11 final quarter. Bilbao’s defense was too much for the visitors, forcing turnovers and restricting Andorra in the paint. Andorra will next face rivals Gipuzkoa next at home in what is expected to be a fiery encounter.
In Slovenia Majok Majok played a season-high 41 minutes in Helios Domzale’s 72-74 overtime loss to Krka Novo Mesto. Helios got out to an early lead before Krka stamped their authority on the match in the second and third quarters to go up by 9 heading into the fourth quarter. Helios played with freedom that enabled them to close the gap in the final term, in the end winning the quarter 22-13, leveling the match at 61 a piece at the end of regulation. The visitors were too good and only just edged out Helios in a tight tussle.
For Majok, it was a serviceable performance, amassing 15 rebounds and fulfilling his role. Majok did only score 6 points; however he was never really included in Helios’ offense, with just 3 shots in 41minutes. Majok performed exactly as one would expect given his minutes, rebounding and hustling, whilst not wasting offensive possessions.
In other news, Herbalife Gran Canaria’s Brad Newley is expected to miss 2-3 weeks with a sprained ankle, having already missed two games with the injury.