Saturday Jan 31, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
16o C
13o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Panathinaikos draws first blood in finals

 Greens beat Olympiakos 75-70 in Piraeus to take the lead in the series

By George Georgakopoulos

European champion Panathinaikos forced Olympiakos’s first domestic defeat this season with a 75-70 score on May 26, taking the lead after the first game of the best-of-five finals despite playing in Piraeus.

The Greens have now taken the home advantage in the finals and can stretch their lead to 2-0 with a victory at home in Game 2 on May 29.

The key to Panathinaikos’s triumph was the zone defense that coach Zeljko Obradovic applied from the second period onwards, strangling the Olympiakos attack that had enjoyed a particularly good start to the game.

Olympiakos had the upper hand in the first period, with its lead stretching as far as nine points (21-12) while Panathinaikos was unable to get any points for long spells from its players apart from captain Dimitris Diamantidis.

Yet in the second period Panathinaikos began its comeback to turn a 29-23 deficit into a 32-30 lead through an impressive Aleks Maric. Olympiakos ended the first half with a minimum lead (35-34), but that was about the end of its domination in the game.

Panathinaikos as usual produced a strong third period that saw it turn things around completely and form the game as it suited it.

With one or two tough referee calls going their way, the Greens opened the gap up to eight points (57-49) making the most of their superiority under the basket: They ended the game with 37 rebounds against 32 for Olympiakos.

The Reds had to chase the game and felt the pressure building up, going into the fourth period with a 56-51 deficit.

A good spell saw the host reduce the arrears to one point (58-57) but a persistent Diamantidis and a reliable Mike Batiste kept Panathinaikos ahead despite the absence of in-form small-forward Stratos Perperoglou who was injured.

Olympiakos's last-ditch effort saw it equalize at 68-68, but two key moments that followed sealed the game in Panathinaikos’s favor.

First it was a three-pointer by Antonis Fotsis that made it 71-68 and then an offensive rebound by Batiste that allowed Panathinaikos to hold on to the ball and maintain its lead (73-70) from the line.

The final 75-70 score was the first win for Panathinaikos over the Reds this season after three wins for Olympiakos in the league and the cup.

Olympiakos coach Dusan Ivkovic would have expected more from players such as Thodoris Papaloukas (particularly in the first half) and Milos Teodosic, while Loukas Mavrokefalidis’s inability to match Batiste showed the significance of the absence of injured Rasho Nesterovic.

Diamantidis was no doubt the man of the match with 21 points, nine assists and five rebounds. Maric scored 14 and Batiste 13 for Panathinaikos.

Teodosic and Yiannis Bourousis scored 14 points each for the Reds.

ekathimerini.com , Thursday May 26, 2011 (23:56)  
Panathinaikos preserves perfect home record
Gattuso: Unpaid OFI players couldn´t buy food
Olympiakos draws AEK in Cup quarterfinals
Below-par Olympiakos succumbs to Efes
Merkel rejects debt writedown for Greece
German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her finance minister have both ruled out a debt haircut for Greece, rejecting the new Greek government's demand to write off part of its 320 billion euro ...
US to work closely with Greece and EU to resolve differences, says White House
The United States will continue working closely with the new government in Greece and other European leaders to resolve differences that could improve Greece's economy, a White House spokesm...
Inside News
Greek markets plunge as SYRIZA digs in on challenge to austerity
Greece’s government bonds and stock market plunged in the week after the election of Syriza, the political party whose vow to renegotiate debt obligations and roll back austerity measures ha...
Greek bank debt plummets as investors head for the exit
The price of Greek bank debt hit all-time lows this week, shutting off their access to wholesale funding and increasing their reliance on central bank funding. Greek lenders that enjoyed som...
Inside Business
INTERVIEW
SYRIZA must come up with ‘pragmatic solutions,’ Schulz tells Kathimerini
“SYRIZA must realize that it is now the Greek government, not a party running an election campaign,” European Parliament President Martin Schulz, the first European official to visit Greece ...
COMMENTARY
Strange haste
The members of the new government must have a lot of confidence in themselves. Several days before announcing his program, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and his cabinet have opened up a mult...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Greek markets plunge as SYRIZA digs in on challenge to austerity
2. Greek bank debt plummets as investors head for the exit
3. Merkel rejects debt writedown for Greece
4. US to work closely with Greece and EU to resolve differences, says White House
5. Panathinaikos preserves perfect home record
6. Increase in minimum salary is left aside for now
more news
Today
This Week
1. US to work closely with Greece and EU to resolve differences, says White House
2. Greek bank debt plummets as investors head for the exit
3. Merkel rejects debt writedown for Greece
4. Greek markets plunge as SYRIZA digs in on challenge to austerity
5. SYRIZA must come up with ‘pragmatic solutions,’ Schulz tells Kathimerini
6. Why Greece went left while Europe turns to right
Today
This Week
1. Greek Elections 2015 | LIVE
2. SYRIZA heads for historic victory but without majority
3. Greek Elections 2015 | LIVE
4. SYRIZA's win will test institutions
5. Greek Elections 2015: The day after | LIVE
6. EU must accept that Greek debt relief is inevitable
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.