Darussafaka stay alive, force Game 3 against the defending champions
ISTANBUL (Turkey) - The black and green team came into the game as the leader of the Turkish League, and they looked like a dominant side from start to finish against Hereda San Pablo Burgos. An 85-66 Darussafaka win forces Game 3 in the Play-In series, which will be played in Spain on Thursday.
The two-time champions trailed the entire game and were without a chance of winning on the road in this one under new coach Paco Olmos. Now Burgos need to use their home court advantage in the series decider to make it back to Round of 16.
Turning point: Dogus Ozdemiroglu had his reaction on the fact he wasn't named in the Best Defenders piece on our website, and he made sure to start the game the right way, with a steal on the very first possession of Burgos.
It's hard to say that was the turning point, but it prevented Burgos from ever taking a lead in this game. The Spaniards came back to 42-41 early on in the third quarter, but Darussafaka responded with a 10-0 run, followed by another 10-3 run - or 20-3 overall - to put the game out of reach at 62-44 late in Q3.
Game hero: Coach Selcuk Ernak. It was next to impossible to prepare for Burgos after another coaching change, but the Turkish playcaller played all his moves perfectly to have a balanced offense and a rock solid defense.
Nathan Boothe was the top scorer with 15 points, followed by Dogus Ozdemiroglu and Gabe Olaseni who had 14 each, while Troy Caupain flirted with a double-double with 12 points and 9 assists. Ernak used 11 players, nine of them scoring at least 4 points.
Stats don't lie: Burgos turned the ball over 25 times, allowing Darussafaka a 33-14 advantage in points from turnovers.
Bottom line: With Jarell Eddie not eligible to play for Hereda San Pablo Burgos in this phase because he had already played the Play-In with SIG Strasbourg, the defending champions will have to search for someone who can give them 20+ points in the third game. Alex Renfore with 11 was the only player in double figures for them.
Meanwhile, Darussafaka won six of their last seven games in all competitions, propelling them to the top of their domestic championship and getting them within an inch of making the Round of 16.
The deciding game will be played on Thursday, January 20 at 20:30 CET.
"We didn't play a good game. We didn't compete in the second half. In the last two or three weeks we didn't play games because of Covid, and we suffered because of it in the second half. We have another opportunity at home on Thursday, so we will try to recover fast and play to win in two days." - Dani Diez, Hereda San Pablo Burgos
"Congrats to Darussafaka, they dominated the game, but I think the difference in the game was the energy, the rhythm, the high pace that they play. It's difficult to play fast in this situation, we committed 25 turnovers, which is too much obviously. I don't want to use this excuse, but our last game was back on January 4. We have another game in two days, it's going to be a long trip back, but in this difficult moment we are lucky that we have the best fans in Europe." - Hereda San Pablo Burgos head coach Paco Olmos
"It was a good win for us at home, in front of our fans, hopefully we can carry over the form to Burgos and make it through." - Gabe Olaseni, Darussafaka
"It was a do or die game, if we lost our European season would've been over. We protected our home court, stuck with the game plan, played through mistakes, but we'll have to do our best in Burgos to qualify for the Round of 16." - Darussafaka head coach Selcuk Ernak