Maccabi Elite Tel Aviv suffered an unexpected loss this evening 76-79 in Istanbul vs Ulker. But a win by one point vs Zalgiris next Thursday in the NOKIA Arena, will assure them a place in the Euroleague Final Four.
Zalgiris lost in Kaunas 87-100 to Pamesa Valencia and so If Maccabi beat Zalgiris & Pamesa win over Ulker, both teams will have 4 wins in Group G but as maccabi has two wins over the Spanish team, they will go to the Final Four. A win by Zalgiris will qualfy them as Pamesa have one point less in the table because of the sanction of not appearing in Tel Aviv last week.
Ulker played without Rentzias & Kutluay and Booker played only in the final period. Maccabi led 12-05 and 16-15 at the end of the first quarter. Ulker took a 33-26 lead in the second but Maccabi came back to 35-32 at the half.
At the end of the third Maccabi led 50-49 and in th final period 58-51 and 69-61 with four minutes to go. But inspired by Naumoski, Ulker ran 12-02 and evened the score at 71. A three pointer by Bluthenthal gave Maccabi a 74-71 lead. Erdogan replied 74-74, Booker made it 76-74 but Saras evened again with two free throws. With 4 seconds to go Booker nailed the final blow with a three pointer.
Ulker domiated the rebound 30-23 and the three points shots with 10 from 21 (47.6%) to Maccabi's 03-14 (21.4%).