Week 3 standout performances
MIES (Switzerland) - The 2020-21 Basketball Champions League season got off to such a spectacular start that the high level of play and extraordinary performances seemed almost unsustainable, but they have continued into November as we had more of the same during the Week 3 games.
We watched quite a few excellent displays in Week 3 but those by Marco Spissu, Keith Langford, DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell, Maksim Salash and Alexandre Chassang were a cut above the rest:
All hail the new assists leader, Marco Spissu
On Wednesday, Dinamo Sassari inflicted on Iberostar Tenerife their heaviest loss in BCL history, 92-72, after Marco Spissu masterminded a truly remarkable 39-point swing between Spanish team's biggest lead in the second frame and the Italian team's biggest lead in the fourth.
Spissu stayed on the floor for almost the entire game -- 39 minutes and 12 seconds -- and finished with a double-double of 14 points and 15 assists, also adding 5 rebounds and 2 steals for an efficiency rating of 27.
The 25-year-old Sardinian point guard, born and raised in Sassari, became only the third player in the history of the competition to dish at least 15 assists in a single game, and the first to do so in a home game. He now leads the league in assists after the first two games, averaging 11.5 assists per contest.
Keith Langford says no
Hapoel Holon did almost everything right during long stretches of their Wednesday visit to Athens and would be well within their rights to feel they deserved a road win against AEK for their troubles. Unfortunately for the Israeli team, it was one of those nights when Keith Langford simply can't lose.
The 2019-20 BCL season MVP and leading scorer poured in 30 points on 12 of 18 shooting from the field, including two huge step-back threes in crunch time to lead AEK to a 100-96 win in a hotly contested clash.
This was Langford's sixth game scoring at least 25 points since his BCL debut in Week 1 of last season - in case you're wondering, no other player has reached that mark in the same stretch. The veteran shooting guard added 3 assists and 3 rebounds, for an efficiency rating of 27.
DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell makes triumphant return
Tofas Bursa stepped out in their first ever BCL game on Tuesday but a player with previous experience in the competition stole the limelight and the headline could very well read 'Welcome back to the BCL, DeVaughn'.
DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell had turned heads the first time he played in the league, back in 2016-17, as he averaged 17.4 points, 6.6 rebounds and 2.2 steals per game for the Bakken Bears.
The 27-year-old swingman then went on to play for the Denver Nuggets and the Oklahoma City Thunder G-League affiliate and returned to Europe this offseason on behalf of Tofas.
On Tuesday he reminded us of his past exploits in the BCL as he scored 24 points on 9 of 14 from the field, grabbed 8 rebounds and came up with 3 steals to register an efficiency rating of 26 and lead his team to an 84-74 win at Keravnos in their BCL premiere.
Maksim Salash shows off in the BCL, finally
It took Tsmoki Minsk three attempts to make it through to the BCL from the qualifiers, but in their league debut on Wednesday we finally realized that Maksim Salash had been ready all along and waiting for the chance to showcase his skills in the competition.
The Belarusian international went 8 for 14 from the floor to collect 20 points and added 7 rebounds and 2 steals as he helped Minsk take their long-awaited first step in the BCL on the right foot, defeating Cholet 82-75 at home.
Should we expect more of the same from the 24-year-old power forward, who registered an efficiency rating of 19 on Tuesday? Well, he is so far averaging 18.3 points and 5.3 rebounds per game through the start of the VTB United League, which seems to suggest that we'd better get used to it.
Alexandre 'The Microwave' Chassang
Alexandre Chassang and Vinnie 'The MIcrowave' Johnson have a big age difference and are completely different in size and position, but the Dijon big man came up with an amazing tribute to the Detroit Pistons legend on Tuesday night to lead his team to an 85-61 victory over ERA Nymburk.
The 26-year-old Frenchman stayed on the floor for 28 minutes but this was plenty of time for him to make a big impact on the game, as he finished with a double-double of 22 points and 13 rebounds and he added 5 assists, 1 steal and 1 block for a monster efficiency rating of 36.
Chassang became only the second player in BCL history, after Vince Hunter, to rack up at least 20 points, 10 rebounds and 5 assists in fewer than 30 minutes of play.