By Eurohoops team/ email@example.com
Both teams were missing key stars in Nando De Colo and Jan Vesely for the hosts and Alexey Shved for the guests. However, behind 24 points in the first half by Janis Timma, Khimki got a 49-44 lead. The answer was defense in the third period, which had a 21-6 partial score for Fenerbahce. The hosts got a substantial 65-55 advantage and never looked back.
Gigi Datome led the charge with 20 points on 8/11 FG, Melih Mahmutoglu added 19, Kostas Sloukas also had 19 and nine assists, while Derrick Williams scored 12 points, grabbed eight rebounds and had some fantastic dunks.
DERRICK WILLIAMS POSTER ALERT 🚨pic.twitter.com/gF0KsDuSdQ
— Eurohoops.net (@Eurohoopsnet) November 28, 2019
As Sloukas said after the final buzzer: “I think it is time to bounce back. We knew it was going to be a difficult game for us because Khimki is a great team, even without Shved, who is their leader”.
Khimki tried to get back in the game during the last period, they cut the lead to five (68-63) thanks to Anthony Gill, but Fenerbahce answered with a 15-7 run (83-70).
Anthony Gill had 16 points for the losing side, and Janis Timma registered a new career-high with 26 points, but only two in the second half.
Fenerbahce made 13 out of 24 triples for an impressive (54,2%) and won back-to-back games for the first time in the current season, moving to a 4-7 record. Khimki is still in better shape with a 6-5 record.
“Despite our lead, we didn’t control the game”
Khimki’s coach Rimas Kurtinaitis admitted that his team, despite having a halftime lead, in reality, was never in charge on the floor: “Congratulations to Zeljko Obradovic and Fenerbahce for a great game. It was a tough game. We had a really bad third quarter, not just on offense but on defense also. We didn’t control the game despite the fact we finished the first half five points up. For sure, we gave emotion to the Fenerbahce players and the result is what it is.”
And the bottom line belongs to Gigi Datome: “When we share the ball and space the floor well, with good timing, good spacing and help each other all the time, we are in good shape. This is still only one game, the season is very long and we are in a very bad position in the standings, so congrats to the team one more time, and tomorrow we will meet to work.”