08 October, 2019
04 October, 2020
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Basketball Champions League Power Rankings: Volume 15

MIES (Switzerland) - Basketball Champions League has reached the Play-Offs, and there are just 16 teams left in the competition. Time for us to sort them out purely by their current power, in our Power Rankings.


Not sure what to say about Teksut Bandirma's chances against ERA Nymburk, when the oldest player in Game 1 was a 23-year-old. It will be a miracle if they manage to force Game 3 against the Czech champs.


Crazy that Lietkabelis played a really good game and it was only good enough for a 9-point defeat in Zaragoza. It gets crazier, because they could not build on that performance, and ended up losing by 14 to Pieno Zvaigzdes in the Lithuanian League. Their results aren't hot and cold, they are blazing and freezing.


We already know coach Dario Gjergja is a magician, but he'll have to dig deep into his bag of tricks to find a way around Iberostar Tenerife's defense. Because Oostende weren't that far away from upsetting the Spaniards on the road, which means that Txus Vidorreta and his crew will not underestimate Filou Oostende this time around. Bag of trick, coach Gjergja. Find something to force Game 3.


Waiting for Brandon Brown to go crazy this week, to get one back on David Holston because JDA Dijon's point guard dominated the first matchup of potential MVP award winners of the season. Nizhny Novgorod lost to UNICS Kazan over the weekend, they need something big to get back on track now. Something big, like defeating one of the best French teams. That should do the trick.


Besiktas Sompo Sigorta had a heartbreaking week. They were hanging in there against Turk Telekom, but now find themselves back up against the wall with an 0-1 score in that Round of 16 tie. Then, they erased a 16-point deficit against Fenerbahce in the Turkish League...only to lose the game by a single point in the final seconds of the derby. Tough pill(s) to swallow.


Not the easiest of schedules out there. Telekom Baskets Bonn have AEK coming to town, then face Bamberg and Bayern in the Bundesliga. Season defining moments here. Especially when they are down 0-1 against AEK and down at 4-16 in the German League.


Peristeri winmasters could change the name to Peristeri streakbusters if they force a Game 3 against Hapoel Bank Yahav Jerusalem. They were the ones who defeated Nymburk back on December 3 to stop their neverending win streak, and they want more of the same now in their backyard, as they play host to Jerusalem. It could happen, you know. It really could.


Win or go home! Dinamo Sassari are glad their long break is finally over, and are keen to get the series v San Pablo Burgos another go in their Sassari arena. How tough could that task be? Well, EB Pau-Lacq-Orthez are the only Basketball Champions League team to defeat Burgos in Spain this season... Yes, even Hapoel Bank Yahav Jerusalem lost a game there, yes, even AEK lost a game there, yes, even Teksut Bandirma lost a game there. So, extremely tough, to answer the question.


Playing the Play-Offs against your domestic rivals can be troublesome, but Turk Telekom were always a step ahead of Besiktas Sompo Sigorta. It will be a different game this week, Besiktas have always been a different animal at home, so don't be surprised if this goes to Game 3. But hey, don't be surprised if it ends with a 20-point win by Turk Telekom, just out of spite because I wrote down it could go to Game 3.


JDA Dijon saw their nine game winning streak in all competitions ended over the weekend, with AS Monaco proving to be too difficult of a task for them. Still, 21-4 in French League is extremely impressive, and they still stand tall in the second spot domestically. A tough trip to Nizhny Novgorod awaits, ending the series in Russia could be crucial, too get in some much needed rest ahead of the closing stages of the French Championship and the Basketball Champions League.


Trying to figure out how on earth Casademont Zaragoza ended up outside of the Top 5... It's not you, it's me. That should cover it. It's not you, Zaragoza, it's just a matter of others exploding and being more powerful last week, and "power" is kinda important when you're doing the Power Rankings. See you back in Top 5 next week, okay? Okay.


Nine wins in a row for AEK, thanks to Kendrick Ray doing Kendrick Ray stuff when it mattered most. Not the first time he showed up right on time for Play-Offs. Back in 2018, he almost ended his current club's season in the Round of 16, when he torched them for 30 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists, wearing the white and black of Nymburk back then. Kendrick Ray and Play-Offs, match made in heaven.


Iberostar Tenerife were tested against the Belgian champs, but when Marcelinho Huertas is doing his thing, their chances of clean sweep are rising, and his chances of winning the MVP award are on the rise, too. Also, he has already surpassed the team record for most assists in a Liga Endesa season, with more than 10 Regular Season games remaining, meaning he's a superhero, that's it.


Just an update. ERA Nymburk have now won 26 straight games in all competitions, dating back to December 3.


You know what gets you an eight-place jump all the way to 2nd spot here, just behind Hapoel Bank Yahav Jerusalem? Winning away at Dinamo Sassari, stealing their home court advantage with a 30-piece by Vitor Benite, that's what gets you and eight-place jump all the way to 2nd spot here, just behind Hapoel Bank Yahav Jerusalem. Good job, San Pablo Burgos. Just remember, the see-saw goes two ways. Lose the next one at home and you're back down in the standings.


Hapoel Bank Yahav Jerusalem are on an eight-game winning streak, which saw them pick up wins over Peristeri winmasters and arch rivals Maccabi Tel Aviv last week. If they don't lose in Greece this week, they'll probably go on a 20-something winning run and finish the season as champions of Israel, and winners of Israeli Cup, SuperCup, the Basketball Champions League and the Eastern Conference of NBA the way they are playing.

*The power rankings are entirely subjective and is in no way a true, accurate ranking systems. All comments are purely those of the author.

Igor Curkovic

Igor Curkovic

Igor Curkovic is Basketball Champions League's writer and editor since day one of the competition, specializing in Live Blog coverage of the games and sorting out the teams on Mondays, in the Power Rankings. When he's not watching basketball, he's commentating Croatian Second Division soccer games for TV.