Team of the Week: Huertas, Langford, Sakic, Dudzinski and Wiltjer
MIES (Switzerland) - Four players who went the extra mile to guide their respective teams to important victories and one player who stood out even in defeat make up the Team of the Week for Gameday 5 in the 2019-20 Basketball Champions League Regular Season.
The five players who shone brighter in a week that featured several excellent performances are Marcelinho Huertas of Iberostar Tenerife, Keith Langford of AEK, Zeljko Sakic of Lietkabelis, Dave Dudzinski of Telenet Giants Antwerp and Kyle Wiltjer of Turk Telekom.
MARCELINHO HUERTAS - Guard
🏀 Dobles figuras de @Huertas09 en anotación y asistencias (20+10) para llevarse el MVP del partido de hoy.— Iberostar Tenerife (@CB1939Canarias) November 13, 2019
💪 20 pts (7/10, en T2; 1/2, en T3 y 3/4, en TL)
😍 10 asistencias (9 en la segunda parte)
🤩 1 robo y 1 recuperación
🏀 +9 pic.twitter.com/NIEB20nPo2
With the game against Gaziantep on the line, Huertas delivered a cross-court pass to Sasu Salin as he was coming off a screen, for the Finn to knock down the game-winning triple for Iberostar Tenerife.
That signature big pass by the Brazilian playmaker punctuated a masterful performance rated at 25 in terms of efficiency that was however invaluable to Tenerife as they overturned a 7-point deficit in 70 seconds and edged out Gaziantep 69-67.
Huertas finished with a double-double of 20 points on 8 of 12 from the field and 10 assists, becoming the first player in BCL history to come off the bench and collect at least 20 points and 10 assists.
He joins Giorgi Shermadini, who had earned a spot on the Team of the Week for Gameday 1, as the two Tenerife players to have claimed this honor this season.
KEITH LANGFORD - Guard
Similarly to fellow veteran Huertas, Keith Langford has yet to get the memo telling him to slow down because of his age, so he just continues to perform in much the same way he has done throughout his distinguished career.
The 36-year-old sharp-shooter went 11 of 18 from the floor and poured in a season-high 30 points on Wednesday to lead AEK to a 72-68 win over San Pablo Burgos.
Langford added 4 assists, 4 rebounds and 2 steals to round off a display rated at 32, claim a place on the BCL Team of the Week for the second time and, of course, recover his spot as the league's leading scorer so far, with 22.8 points per game.
The AEK veteran's 114 points in the first five games of the season place him a close third, behind Nick Minnerath (117) and James Smith (116), for most points scored at this juncture in the competition.
ZELJKO SAKIC - Forward
"We came so close to winning in the first game against Sassari, but we fell just one rebound short. So I am very happy for us and for our fans that we finally get to win," Sakic said after leading Lietkabelis on Tuesday to their maiden success in Group A.
The Croatian forward came up with a season-high 32 points to guide the Lithuanian side to a 98-83 victory over Polski Cukier Torun at home. He drilled 5 of his 8 shots from three-point range and also had 4 assists, 4 steals, 2 rebounds and 1 block for an efficiency rating of 33, which is also his season-high.
Sakic has become the first Lietkbalis player to score more than 21 points in a BCL game and to earn a place on the Team of the Week this season.
He has also become the first player this season with at least 5 made two-point shots, 5 made two-point shots and 5 made free-throws in the same game.
DAVE DUDZINSKI - Forward
The Antwerp power forward is so far the only player in this edition of the competition to be named on the Team of the Week despite playing for a losing team in the week on question.
The reason is that Dudzinksi put forward an impossible to reject argument, as he came up with a monster double-double of 21 points and 22 rebounds even though his team fell 80-71 at Anwil Wloclawek.
The 27-year-old American's performance registered an efficiency rating of 41 and edged out Suleiman Braimoh's display rated at 40 on Gameday 4 as the highest-rated performance so far this season.
Duzinski, who has now scored more than 20 points in two of his last three BCL games after never reaching that figure in his first 22 games in the competition, added 5 assists and 1 steal to round off his remarkable Wednesday performance.
KYLE WILTJER - Forward
Turk Telekom got off to a slow start against Filou Oostende on Wednesday but the Canadian international got the hot hand early on and his stellar effort prevented the Turkish team from falling behind by more than 10 points, ultimately propelling the hosts to a second-half comeback and a 72-66 win.
Wiltjer had to stay on the floor for more than 34 minutes but barely showed any signs of fatigue, finishing with a season-high 33 points to go with his 10 rebounds, just one short of his season-high 11 boards last week.
The 27-year-old stretch power forward hit 11 of his 17 shots from the field, including 5 of 8 from beyond the arc, and put up a performance rated at 33 in terms of efficiency.
Wiltjer is the first player this season, and only the fifth player in the history of the competition, to collect at least 30 points and 10 rebounds in the same game.