20 October, 2020
09 May, 2021
5 Keith Langford (AEK)
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Week 9 Tuesday games preview

MIES (Switzerland) - Tuesday is the first day of 2021 as far as Basketball Champions League action is concerned and the curtain rises on the new year with a five-game slate of pivotal importance in the race for the Play-Offs.

Here's have a closer look at all five Tuesday games in Week 9 of the Regular Season:

Hapoel Unet-Credit Holon (2-2) vs. AEK (3-1) -- Group C, 17:00 CET


  • Holon are coming off a 96-88 win over Maccabi Haifa for the Israeli Cup at the weekend, as Guy Pnini and Tyrus McGee led the way with 19 points apiece.

  • AEK are coming off an 89-72 win over Kolossos Rhodes in Greek Basket League action on Saturday, behind Keith Langford's 22 points.

  • Nikos Zisis and Marcus Slaughter are sidelined through injury but AEK welcome Matt Lojeski back in their line-up.

  • AEK will secure a spot in the Play-Offs with a win.

  • AEK won the reverse fixture in Athens 100-96 and it's the only game so far this BCL season in which the Greek team scored 100 or more points.

  • Holon are leading the league in made free-throws, with 19.3 per game, and attempted free-throws 25 per game.

  • AEK are scoring a league-high 1.28 points per possession on average (they score 87 points per game on average). The Greek team is making a league second-best 32.8 field goals per game on average (24.2 made two-pointers, 8.5 made three-pointers).

  • C.J. Harris and Isaiah Miles are the only two Holon players to have scored in double digits in every BCL game this season; Harris scored a BCL career-high 27 points in the reverse fixture in Athens.

  • AEK's Keith Langford has scored 11 or more points in 20 of his 21 games in the BCL. The veteran shooting guard played for only six minutes in that single game in which he scored fewer than 11. Langford is averaging 19 points per game in his BCL career, second in competition history behind Nick Minnerath (with 20.3 points per game) among players with more than 10 games.

Nizhny Novgorod (3-1) vs. Casademont Zaragoza (3-1) -- Group D, 17:00 CET


  • Nizhny are coming off an 83-63 loss to CSKA Moscow in VTB United league action on Sunday, despite a 17-point contribution from Kasey Shepherd.

  • By contrast, Zaragoza celebrated a hard-earned 96-95 win over Real Betis at home in Spanish Liga Endesa action on Saturday, behind 24 points and 7 assists from Dylan Ennis.
  • Zaragoza will clinch a berth in the Play-Offs with a win in this game. Nizhny will advance to the Play-Offs if they win and Lublin beats Falco in the other game of the group.

  • Zaragoza, who won 78-75 in the reverse fixture in Spain, are looking to become only the second Spanish team to win at Nizhny after UCAM Murcia in October 2018 (Murcia beat Nizhny 72-51 in that game).

  • Nizhny are riding a three-game winning streak, their longest ever in the BCL. The Russian team's only defeat so far this season was the 78-75 loss at Zaragoza in the reverse fixture.

  • Zaragoza are leading the league in two-point field goal percentage as they are shooting 64.4 percent from two-point range. The Spanish team has shot the ball at 60 percent or better from within the arc in each of their four BCL games so far this season.

  • Nizhny won all three BCL games in which Kasey Shepherd came off the bench and lost the only game in which he was in the starting lineup (against Zaragoza). Shepherd averaged 17.3 points and 4.7 assists in his three games off the bench.

  • Dylan Ennis is Zaragoza's leading scorer, averaging 17.8 points per game, however he has the lowest plus/minus rating on the team, -7.3 points per game.

Pinar Karsiyaka (1-2) vs. Fortitudo Bologna (0-3) -- Group F, 18:00 CET

Amath M'Baye had a huge showing in Turkish league action at the weekend

  • Karsiyaka are coming off an 84-72 road win at Besiktas in Turkish BSL league action on Saturday, as Amath M'Baye went off for 28 points and registered an efficiency rating of 31.

  • Fortitudo were also victorious on the road at the weekend, 80-67 at Cantú, behind 19 points from Leonardo Tote and 18 points from Adrian Banks.

  • Fortitudo will be eliminated from Play-Offs contention if they lose on Tuesday.

  • Karsiyaka, who will play host to an Italian team for the fourth time in BCL history, have a 2-1 record against teams from that country at home. The Turkish team's largest ever win in the BCL was against Italian opposition, 99-59 over Umana Reyer Venezia in December 2016.

  • Karsiyaka, who are currently on a two-game losing skid in the BCL, have never lost three games in a row in the competition.

  • Karsiyaka commit just 9 turnovers per game on average, fewer than any other team in the league, and they also give up the fewest fast-break points, just 5 per game on average.

  • Fortitudo score a league-low 0.8 points per possession on average. The Italian team's offense is so far down the bottom on that list that no other team this season averages fewer than 0.95 points per possession.

  • Fortitudo's Ethan Happ, who is currently sidelined through injury, is one of only two players in BCL history to have posted at least 15 points, 10 rebounds and 5 blocks in a single game. Happ achieved that feat in the December 8 game against RETAbet Bilbao, his only BCL appearance so far.

Bakken Bears (1-3) vs. Galatasaray (1-3) -- Group A, 20:00 CET


  • Bakken were last in action on December 30 and they cruised to an 100-78 win at Næstved in Danish league action, as Deshawn Stephens had 20 points and 7 rebounds.

  • Galatasaray meanwhile are coming off an 87-73 loss to Fenerbahce at home in Turkish BSL league action, despite 15-point contributions from each of Brock Motum and RJ Hunter.

  • Galatasaray's 91-81 win in the reverse fixture in Turkey remains their only victory so far in the competition. If the Turkish team win Tuesday's game, it would be their first ever victory on the road in the BCL.

  • Bakken, who won 93-71 at Sassari in their most recent BCL outing on December 16, are looking to win consecutive games for the first time ever in their BCL history. However, the last time the Danish club won a BCL game at home was in November 2016, against Fraport Skyliners.

  • Bakken are averaging a league-high 16.3 points fast-break points per game and a joint league-high 15 second-chance points per game (Dinamo Sassari, who are also in Group A, are the other team averaging 15 second-chance points per game).

  • Galatasaray are leading the league in three-point field goal percentage, as they shot 48.8 percent from beyond the arc over their first four games.

  • Bakken's De’Shawn Stephens had at least 10 points, 10 rebounds and 2 blocks in each of his last two BCL games and is looking to become the first player in league history to post such a statline in three consecutive games.

Cholet (1-3) vs. Tsmoki-Minsk (2-2) -- Group C, 20:30 CET


  • Chris Horton is a new addition to the Cholet roster and could make his BCL debut in Tuesday's game. On the other hand Maksim Salash, who had a team-high  20 points for Tsmoki-Minsk in the reverse fixture, is no longer on the Belarus champions' roster as he signed with BCL reigning champions Hereda San Pablo Burgos. Minsk were 82-75 winners in the reverse fixture in Belarus.

  • Cholet last stepped out on the court on December 19th, when they clinched an 80-76 road win at Nanterre in French Jeep Elite action.

  • Tsmoki-Minsk meanwhile are coming off a 77-76 loss at Lokomotiv Kuban in a really tight game for the VTB United league on December 23, despite 17 points and 7 assists from Rob Lowery.

  • Tsmoki-Minsk will secure a spot in the advance to the Play-Offs if they win this game and AEK beat Holon in the other game in the group on Tuesday.

  • Cholet's sole victory so far in the BCL came at their only home game prior to Tuesday's clash, 79-70 over AEK.

  • Tsmoki-Minsk won both games in which they scored more than 75 points and lost both games in which they scored fewer than 75.

  • Tsmoki-Minsk hold opponents to just 16.5 made shots from two-point range per game on average, which means the Belarus team's defense is the best in the league in that aspect.

  • Lasan Kromah is the only Cholet player to have scored in double digits in each of their four BCL games. Kromah also came up with at least 3 steals in each of his last two appearances in the league.

  • Minsk's Rob Lowery had 18 points and 10 assists in the reverse fixture, but since that game he has averaged 9.3 points and 4.3 assists per game.