Chus Mateo’s team wins (83-68) and closes the day sharing the lead with Olympiacos
If any Real Madrid fan was still dragging the acceleration of the comeback against Barça, they surely appreciated the very placid night that Panathinaikos gave them. The Greek team has been in the doldrums for a long time in the Euroleague, but even in that depression it is hard to remember an image as disastrous as the one he left in the first half against the Whites. Without doing more than fair, the team of Chus Mateo they bagged a comfortable victory (83-68) and closed the day sharing the lead with Olympiacos.
Mateo said in the preview that the pieces were fitting together well, but that his team should not become complacent. And if anything it was that, the relaxation, which prevented Madrid from ruling much earlier. If he could open the game with a 15-2 run just by defending and picking up the fruit that fell from the tree, it was going to be difficult to maintain the tension for the 40 minutes.
More than half of those starting points were from Guerschon Yabusele, who best understood the hole that Panathinaikos had in the bottom line (16 points, 7 rebounds). The Frenchman hit the hoop and passed the bill to a generous defense to ruin. Inoperative in static and lazy in transitions. How many times was a jog enough for Madrid to get an easy basket on the counterattack?
And there were many, because Panathinaikos sinned as a simpleton in attack, devoted to what Dwayne Bacon (Euroleague top scorer) or Paris Lee They could generate in one against one, and barely grabbed the game thanks to the success in triples. If Bacon also did not have his night (4/14 in shots), the accounts did not come out.
All the clarity that the American lacked with the ball was with the microphone when they asked him to give his diagnosis of the first half. What had to be improved behind? “Well, we have to defend.” And what would change in attack? “Uff. The entire game.” His eyes almost rolled back. It was not for less.
Without demanding too much, Real Madrid lived all night over a 10-point advantage. No shine, but without any rush. A walk to recover from the heat against Barça. And to catch air for what is coming. On Friday he visits Monaco with a pending task: to face the best in the Euroleague.
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