By Eurohoops team/ email@example.com
Two games launched the 2020-2021 season in Spain on Saturday, September 19, and while three other ACB matches were postponed due to coronavirus cases among teams.
Laurynas Birutis landed the first MVP honor of the season, after leading Obradoiro to a huge victory in his ACB debut.
Acunsa GBC – Real Madrid 70-86
Less than a week after capturing the 2020 Supercup title, Real Madrid beat San Sebastian 86 – 70 on the road behind 18 points courtesy of Sergio Llull. Four more Real Madrid players scored in double figures: Nicolas Laprovittola (11 points, six assists), Jaycee Carroll (11 points) Trey Thompkins (11 points) and Edy Tavares (10 points). Supercup MVP Facu Campazzo was out for the “Blancos”
Lucas Faggiano (13 points), Johnny Dee (11 points) and Viny Okouo (11 points) were the top scorers of San Sebastian in the team’s return to ACB after spending the previous season in LEB Oro (Second Division).
Gran Canaria – Bilbao 107-102
Gran Canaria newcomers Matt Costello and Amedeo Della Valle had 19 points and 18 points respectively and Stan Okoye added 18 points of his own as their team grabbed a 107 – 102 win over Bilbao. Ludde Hakanson dropped 22 points, Jonathan Rousselle 17 (including the game-tying basket that sent the game to the extra period) and Arnoldas Kulboka 16 points for the losing side.
Estudiantes – Manresa 84-88
Manresa, despite some ups and downs, managed to overcome Estudiantes 88-84. Jou Guillem and Rafa Martinez led the way with 16 points each while Makai Mason scored 13. For Estudiantes, Dovydas Giedraitis scored 17 in addition to the Serbian duo of Aleksa Avramovic and Aleksandar Cvetkovic who logged 15 points each.
Pierria Henry and Luca Vildoza had a stunning connection for the latter to hit the game-winner that gave Baskonia 76 – 73 victory over Valencia. Vildoza finished with a game-high 21 points to lead the reigning champions to win in their 2021 ACB opener.
Luca Vildoza for the win, Pierria Henry for the assist of the weekpic.twitter.com/4EKHfEfF1q
— Eurohoops (@Eurohoopsnet) September 20, 2020
Zoran Dragic added 14 points and Tonye Jekiri 12 points plus six boards in his ACB debut. Henry finished with six points, six assists and five steals for Baskonia.
For Valencia, Sam Van Rossom (12 points) and Bojan Dubljevic (12 points) scored in double figures.
Barcelona – San Pablo Burgos 89-86
Barcelona struggled before ultimately edging San Pablo Burgos 89 – 86 in a game that was marked by a controversial finale.
With a few seconds remaining and Barca up 87 – 86, Burgos’ Jasiel Rivero was called with an offensive foul in a moving screen on Alex Abrines. Burgos coach Joan Penarroya was ejected after protesting the call.
Esta falta en ataque señalada a Jasiel Rivero dejó sin opciones al @SanPabloBurgos en Barcelona
— EurohoopsES (@EurohoopsES) September 20, 2020
Nikola Mirotic (22 points, 10 rebounds), Abrines (20 points) and Pierre Oriola (20 points, 11 rebounds) stood out from Sarunas Jasikevicius’ team. Vitor Benite scored 18 for Burgos.
MoraBanc Andorra – UCAM Murcia 84-66
Clevin Hannah had 16 points and seven assists and Malik Dime dropped 16 points as well as Andorra downed Murcia 84 – 66. From Murcia, Conner Frankamp finished with 10 points, five rebounds and five assists.
Obradoiro – Fuenlabrada 101-82
Talk about making some noise in your first game in such a major league. In his ACB debut, Lithuanian center Laurynas Birutis produced big-time (27 points, 12 rebounds and three blocks for 41 PIR) as Obraodiro defeated Fuenlabrada 101 – 82. Laurynas Beliauskas (yes Obradoiro has two “Laurynases”), contributed 15 points.
Obi Emegano had 20 points and Leonardo Meindil 18 points for Fuenlabrada.
The highlight of the game was that crazy basket by Albert Oliver. 42 years young and still going strong.
Albert Oliver. 42 years young.pic.twitter.com/a84BD8y6jD
— Eurohoops (@Eurohoopsnet) September 20, 2020
Joventut – Unicaja 81-73
Ante Tomic logged 17 points and seven rebounds as he led Joventut to an 81-73 win against Unicaja. Vladimir Brodziansky added 14 and Simon Birgander 13 points.
Brgander returned from a long pause as did Shawn Dawson. For Unicaja, Axel Bouteille was the only one in double-digits with 15 points.
? ¡@ShawnDawson8 ya vuelve a anotar en la #LigaEndesa!
? En directo por @MovistarBasket pic.twitter.com/JzZN3x3Vn5
— Liga Endesa (@ACBCOM) September 21, 2020
Tenerife – Zaragoza 91-86
Bruno Fitipaldo stepped up with game-high 23 points for Tenerife as they grabbed a 91-86 overtime win against Zaragoza.
Marcelinho Huertas and Giorgi Shermadini followed with 17 points each while Aaron Doornekamp added 16. On the other side, DJ Seeley and Dylan Ennis scored 15 points each for Zaragoza.