05 October, 2021
15 May, 2022
20 Dusan Djordjevic (OOST)
Game Report
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Defense wins championships: More turnovers than made shots for Oostende in Malaga

MALAGA (Spain) - Filou Oostende came into the game with the third best offense in the entire Basketball Champions League, but Unicaja's second best defense in BCL proved to be too strong for the Belgian champs on Wednesday.

It finished 75-59, with Unicaja avoiding an 0-2 hole to start their Round of 16 campaign, having already lost a game at home to U-BT Cluj Napoca. Filou Oostende were within a point before the halftime, but did not show up for the second half.

Turning point: Fotios Katsikaris' halftime team talk. Whatever the Greek playcaller ordered, it seemed to work after the break. Unicaja's defense looked like the one that allowed 98 points per 100 possessions so far in the BCL, and Oostende only scored 25 points in the last two quarters.

That would be a low number for any team, but it's extremely low for Dario Gjergja's squad. Oostende came into the game averaging 117.5 points per 100 possessions, trailing only Galatasaray Nef and SIG Strasbourg in that department.

They were trailing Unicaja for the last 20 minutes, too, not close enough to make things complicated from third quarter on.

Game hero: While Tim Abromaitis scored a team-high 12 points, and Alberto Diaz having a solid 10-point, 6-assist outing, the honor belongs to Dejan Kravic. The three-time BCL champion, twice with Burgos, once with Virtus Bologna, just arrived in Malaga, and is already making a difference inside.

With Micheal Eric out for the season because of a knee injury, Unicaja will need Kravic's presence. He had 8 points, 5 rebounds and 3 blocks in less than 15 minutes of action.


Stats don't lie: Oostende had 22 turnovers and 21 made shots from the field. No need to add anything to that.

Bottom line: Unicaja are now at 1-1, ending a run of three straight single digit defeats in all competitions.

Oostende only played their first Round of 16 game, but already learned that there will be no mercy from their opponents in this phase.


They said:

"Second quarter was very decent, we controlled the possession of the ball finally, but in the third quarter we had naive turnovers, and we got punished. We had three technicals, I would say cheap, and from there we started to go down with no chance to bounce back, especially when Unicaja made three three-pointers to beat the shot clock, two off the backboard. We need to learn." - Filou Oostende head coach Dario Gjergja

"From the jump, we came out with a lot of energy. Tried to keep our focus on the defensive end, how to keep running against this team, and I think that's what we did for most of the game, against a really good team. I started a little bit rusty, still trying to get the know the system and the personnel on the team, but as the game went on, I got more comfortable." - Dejan Kravic, Unicaja

"This is the game of the season in terms of being very solid for almost 40 minutes defensively. The energy, the game plan, good activity with the hands, fighting for the rebounds. This is important for us because if we have this energy and we control the rebounds, we can run. We are a team with good efficiency in the open court. We shared the ball offensively, 20+ assists, and did a great job against both (Phil) Booth and (Levi) Randolph on defense." - Unicaja head coach Fotios Katsikaris