Olympiakos required 100 points and two overtime periods to escape with victory from AEK’s home court on Sunday, showing that the Reds are at their season’s low point and that AEK will soon be able to challenge both Panathinaikos and Olympiakos all the way.
The game at the Olympic Sports Hall ended 77-77 after 40 minutes and 87-87 in the first overtime, but the relative inexperience of AEK told in the second overtime when its turnovers and two crucial triples by Vangelis Mantzaris gave Olympiakos a 100-93 win that has brought it close to sealing the top spot in the regular season.
The weekend was full of knife-edge matches, that have made the four rounds of games left in the regular season ever more appetizing.
Kavala gained a lifeline beating visiting Rethymno 103-102, also in overtime, while follow struggler Arkadikos saw its chances for survival suffer a blow as it lost 79-67 at Lavrio, that is now looking like staying up in its maiden season in the Basket League after this crucial win.
Aris is now mighty close to clinching the third place ahead of the play-offs with its 67-65 edging of host Kifissia on Saturday. Cross-town rival PAOK returned to the play-off positions seeing off Apollon Patras 80-67 at home. Kolossos Rhodes saw off Korivos at Amaliada 71-68 in another thrilling game.
On Monday Trikala hosts Panathinaikos.