Summary: Taranto - Hapoel Tel Aviv 78:60 (Sport 1)
Celebrations and great joy were recorded last night (Thursday) in the Maccabi Tel Aviv Valencia dressing room after the important victory of the Yellows 93:94 over Valencia outside.
Thanks to the victory, Maccabi is expected to return to the top eight in the Euroleague at the end of the cycle, with a positive balance of 12 wins and 11 losses, to pass Valencia, and it will hold the advantage in every clash against them in the table thanks to a double win.
The Yellows didn't save at all in the first half of the game, conceding 55 points and trailing by 10 at halftime, but the third quarter was once again their biggest quarter, in which they scored 34 points, turned the score around, and managed to keep the victory after a great drama in the final seconds.
Wade Baldwin was the team's leading scorer with 19 points but did not have a great day, as Bonzie Colson with 17 points and 12 rebounds and captain John DiBartholomew with 17 points including 5 threes from 6 attempts, carried the team to victory.
"It was a huge victory for us, we struggled in the away games, we knew how to get out of a difficult first half, we stayed together and we knew how to come out with a victory that we really needed and deserved," concluded DiBartolmeo.
Jaylen Adams who added 5 points said: "We needed it, it was essential for us because we are close with them. Knowing that we can win away from home will increase our confidence. We knew we could face any team, and we came together at halftime, realized our mistakes and corrected them".
Bonzie Coulson said: "We needed to regroup at half-time, especially after playing very soft in the first half. In the second half we played hard, got them ready first, we needed this win, we had a tough time away, hopefully we can continue with that in the future. It shows our character , we don't give up. We lack players, but players come off the bench and give great minutes."
Jondi starred in Valencia (photo: official website, Elad Goldstein, Maccabi Tel Aviv Instagram)
In last night's game, Maccabi Tel Aviv ended its away games campaign, which included two losses to Olympiakos and the powerful Barcelona and a victory last night.
The most striking statistic from these games was that Maccabi learned how to advance to the second half and in these three games created momentum from the locker room into a particularly impressive third quarter.
On average in these three games in the 3rd quarters, Maccabi scored 31.3 points per game and conceded 21.3 points, an almost extraordinary figure.
"We know how to make our adjustments at halftime, and that's an important thing, it shows that the players react to the things that Oded talks about," they said at the club last night with pride, "we mustn't forget that we did this victory and the good games in Barcelona and Olympiakos without Lorenzo Brown, it's impressive and gives a lot of hope Towards the rest of the road."
More in Walla!
10 weeks and swim half an hour rowing easily!
Served on behalf of TI SWIM
Almost lost it, again.
Baldwin (photo: official website, Elad Goldstein, Instagram Maccabi Tel Aviv)
11 rounds to the end of the season, Maccabi Tel Aviv has a positive balance, when it is quite clear that the close table of the Euroleague this season is expected to determine that 19 wins will definitely be enough to qualify for the playoffs, and in certain scenarios even 18 and 17 may be enough.
Maccabi have seven home games and four away games waiting until the end of the season.
Out of the seven home games, the Yellows will face two teams that currently seem outside the picture of playoff chances - Bayern Munich and Milan, three opponents directly on the ticket for the playoffs - Red Star Belgrade next week, Virtus Bologna and Bascona and two opponents from the top of the table - Real Madrid and Fenerbahce.
Outside, the Yellows have three games that are considered difficult on paper - Monaco, Andolo Eps and Zalgiris Kovna and another more comfortable game - Villerban.
At this stage, it seems that between 6 and 7 wins out of the 11 will be enough for Maccabi for a second season in a row of qualifying for the playoffs, and the first in a full season of games in the new format.
On the one hand, they respond well to his adjustments in the third quarter.
On the other hand, where is the defense?
Ketch (Photo: GettyImages, Sonia Canada)
Last night's game was one of the record games of captain John DiBartolmeo in the yellow uniform in the Euroleague.
Jondi scored 17 points, two points less than his record in a Euroleague game set more than 3 years ago, and set a record for him in a Euroleague game for three-pointers in one game - 5, and also set a record for minutes played in a Euroleague game for him - 28 minutes and 43 seconds.
DiBartholomeo with Oded Ketch gets a lot of playing minutes, when only once this season has he averaged less than 10 minutes, and in fact he records a record average minutes for the season so far with more than 15 minutes per evening.
Oded Ketesh admitted in the past that he can trust his captain, and Maccabi Tel Aviv are very satisfied with his performance this season and officials at the club said recently that they are sure that Dibartholomeo will stay at the club "until retirement or close to it".
managed to pick themselves up after two weak quarters.
Maccabi (photo: official website, Elad Goldstein, Instagram Maccabi Tel Aviv)
With all the joy from the significant victory in Valencia, last night's game once again highlighted the problem of Maccabi Tel Aviv in the defensive game in recent times.
Out of its last seven Euroleague games, starting on January 6, Maccabi conceded three times over 90 points, another time 88 points and only once, against Elba Berlin, did it stop the opponent at 74 points.
Even in the league games, the situation is not good recently, when against Bnei Herzliya and Kiryat Ata City, Maccabi conceded too many points.
The professional team saw great progress during the end of the previous civil year, when Maccabi halted its fall after the start of the season, but recently they admit that they have difficulty finding defensive solutions in many games.
Maccabi knows that with all due respect to Valencia's victory, if there is no significant improvement in defense, they will have difficulty registering more achievements in the away games.
Euroleague and European basketball
Maccabi Tel Aviv in basketball