SPORTS

Error-prone Panathinaikos loses again at Real Madrid

GEORGE GEORGAKOPOULOS

TAGS: Basketball

Panathinaikos is left ruing the missed chance of a break last Wednesday in Game 1 of the Euroleague play-off series with Real Madrid, as in Friday’s Game 2 it lost 78-63 and is on the verge of elimination in this best-of-five series. No team has ever won a series on this level having trailed 2-0.

The Greens were uncharacteristically error-prone in this game, committing 17 turnovers in total, while facing a Real that recovered from its terrible rate of 10/35 triples on Wednesday to a remarkable 13/27 on Friday.

With its influential captain Nick Calathes recording a Euroleague play-off career low of just one point (0/9 twos and 0/2 threes), Panathinaikos could not expect to survive the Real Madrid challenge. The front line of Panathinaikos hardly fared any better, with Giorgos Papagiannis scoring two points and Ian Vougioukas four. A team cannot make the Final Four with a 36.6 percent two-point shooting rate.

The picture of the encounter was clear from the first quarter, that ended 21-8. The partial recovery of the Greek team in Q2, slashing the distance to nine (35-26 at half-time) and then to seven (38-31) would not stop the Spaniards, given also the erratic showing of several Panathinaikos players.

The 15 points of difference in the end were quite flattering for Panathinaikos, that needs to recover quickly and prepare for Game 3 in Athens on Tuesday.

DeShaun Thomas was the top scorer for the visitors with 13 points, ahead of Sean Kilpatrick with 10.

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