What an incredible game this evening in Moscow. This time it was Maccabi Elite Tel Aviv who came back from the dead to beat CSKA Moscow 83-80 and share top place in Group B of the Euroleague on a 10-03. A win next week in Tel Aviv over Montepaschi Siena and a loss by CSKA in Kaunas, will put Maccabi in first place at the end of the Regular Season. If the Russians will win vs Zalgiris, then Maccabi will rank second but will head one of the groups in the Top 16 as second best placed team in the Regular Season.
This time it was Maccabi who came back from 14 pts down at the end of the third quarter and won the final period 31-17 with an incredible three pointer on the buzzer by Anthony Parker.
This was not a great game by Maccabi. Too many players struggled and failed to produce their best. Both teams were nervous and inaccurate in the first half. CSKA won the first period 17-14 & Maccabi did exactly the same in the second and at half time it was all even 31-31.
Saras, who has only three pts in the fdirst half, opened the second with a three pointer. But then CSKA ran 10-0. Maccabi fame back to 41-39 but Brown led the home team to their highest margin 63-49. CSKA won the period 32-21 when Saras closed the period with his third triplet to make it 63-52.
CSKA increased the lead to 65-52 but 6 consecutive points by the Maccabi point guard kept Maccabi close. Gur Shelef, in a very good final quarter. Made it 73-69 with 3:30 minutes left. The hosts then made it 77-71 but Vujcic with a jumper and Shelef from the line. Closed it to 77-75. Parker missed a layup and the rebound went to Brown who smashed it in and with 30 seconds to go CSKA had a 79-75 lead. Then Parker made only one free throw but saw Derrick Sharp grab the offensive rebound and score his only two points of the game to make it 79-78.
Now its was Brown’s turn to miss one from the line and in the other end Vujcic made it 80-80 from another tip in. The final play was in Papaloukas hands but he shot an airball. With two seconds to go, Shelef sent a long pass towards Parker who was covered by two CSKA players. He grabbed the ball, turned 180 degrees and sank in a three pointer right on the buzzer to give Maccabi its first win in Moscow since 1989, losing the last four encounters.
Maccsabi dominated the rebound 42-32 including 11 offensive rbds. Maccabi were also superior in three points shots with 44% to 30% by CSKA.
Sarunas Jasukevicius was the MVP on the night with 25 pts including 5 from 9 three pointers, 6 assists & 4 rbds.