Panathinaikos produced a below-par performance and lost Game 1 of the Euroleague play-offs at Laboral Kutxa with an 84-68 score in Spain on Wednesday.
The Greeks had no answer to their hosts’ supremacy in all aspects of the game in Vitoria, losing contact with the score from the second quarter, as it was only Miroslav Raduljica who had a good night in attack. He was the game’s top scorer with 21 points, assisted only by Marquez Haynes with 11.
Laboral’s Greek star, Yiannis Bourousis, was once again unstoppable, with 15 points and six rebounds. On one more night that he was dominant close to the basket, Panathinaikos would have needed its distance shooting to be good, but only made three out of 19 three-pointers (15.8 percent).
Game 2 of the best-of-five series will follow on Friday evening, again in Spain.
Also on Wednesday, the regular season of the Greek league concluded with Olympiakos sealing the top spot thanks to a 95-59 home win over Rethymno.
Last Saturday’s games sent Arkadikos down to the A2 division, as Korivos stayed up. Arkadikos went down 87-74 at AEK and Korivos said “thank you very much” beating Lavrio 86-69 at Amaliada to avoid relegation right at the end.
In other matches Panathinaikos defeated host Kifissia 84-75, Aris saw off Kolossos 83-68, PAOK downed relegated Kavala 87-74 away and Trikala overcame Apollon Patras 84-67.
The play-offs begin this Saturday with Olympiakos facing Rethymno, Aris meeting Kiissia and AEK clashing with PAOK. The Panathinaikos vs Kolossos series will take place next month. The quarterfinals are best-of-three series.