17 October, 2023
05 May, 2024
32 Trevor Thompson (PERI), 6 Jermaine Love (PERI)
Game Report
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A Spanoulis masterclass: Peristeri eliminate defending champions Bonn, reach Final Four

MIES (Switzerland) - There will be a new BCL champion in 2024. Peristeri bwin defeated the title holders, Telekom Baskets Bonn, on the road in the decisive Game 3 of the Quarter-Finals, reaching the Final Four in Belgrade.

Peristeri prevailed 89-77 for coach Vassilis Spanoulis and his players to reach the BCL Semi-Finals for the first time ever in club history. They will attempt to become the second Greek team to win the trophy, after AEK in 2018. 

Turning point: Peristeri's shot making was incredible in the first half, as they opened proceedings with a 27-point first quarter and creating a double-digit lead. The visitors stayed in front of the hosts for the rest of the game and the only reason their lead was never bigger than 12 points was turnovers. Peristeri commited 9 in the first half, way too many for a team that averaged just 11 turnovers per game coming into Wednesday's game.

However, Spanoulis found all the right words in the locker room to calm the nerves, as his men finished with just 5 second-half turnovers and never allowed the hosts to take the lead after the break.

Bonn did come within a single-possession deficit, 63-62 with 1:36 left in the third quarter, but Joe Ragland had the first answer, and Elijah Mitrou-Long joined him with two gigantic three-pointers to bring the lead back to double digits ahead of the closing minutes.

Game heroes: It's not fair to single out just one Ragland scored 20 of his 21 points in the first three quarters, while also dishing out 8 assists. Jermaine Love was big off the bench with 16 points, Mitrou-Long finished with 15, while Trevor Thompson picked up a 14-point, 11-rebound double-double.

When you consider that four men were in such good form in a do-or-die game on the road, then the real game hero must have been their coach, right? Right. An amazing playing career is about to get a similar coaching sequel for Vassilis Spanoulis.

Stats don't lie: We tend to over-analyze basketball, but sometimes it comes down to who can put the orange ball through that hoop more often. Peristeri made 32-of-52 shots from the field, way better than Telekom Baskets Bonn's 28-of-72, including an abysmal 6-of-24 from three-point range.

Bottom line:
Peristeri are flying to Belgrade in ten days' time, becoming only the second Greek team to reach the Final Four in BCL history. They will face either Lenovo Tenerife or Tofas Bursa in the Semi-Finals.

Bonn fans can be proud of their season. They went through a complete overhaul over the summer, changing most of the coaching staff and the entire roster from the Season 7-winning team, and despite early struggles, coach Roel Moors made them a contender until the final buzzer of the Quarter-Finals.

Harald Frey signs off with 21 points, Brian Fobbs had 17 off the bench, but Hereda San Pablo Burgos will remain for now the only team to win back-to-back BCL trophies.

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