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Euroleague Preview & Tips – Play-offs Game 1

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Euro League basketball predictions appear under each mini game preview.

Real – Panathinaikos

For the second season in a row, these teams meet in the playoffs. This time, the series begins in the Spanish capital. The teams arrive in much different momentums. Madrid lost two of its last three games and is facing the possibility of starting the series without point guard and former EuroLeague MVP Sergio Llull. Panathinaikos is among the hottest teams in the league with seven wins from its last eight games. However, the lone Madrid win and Panathinaikos defeat in the aforementioned periods was in Athens on a Rudy Fernandez buzzer-beating three in Round 29.

Madrid enters this series with its on-court leader, Sergio Llull, injured. The team must collectively make up for his absence in many areas. First is playing time; with two games in three days, the knock to the team’s depth is relevant. Madrid will also miss his backcourt scoring and leadership. Having Facu Campazzo to step into the starting lineup is huge, but without a natural third point guard, running the offense when Camapzzo rests will be more difficult. Playing well in these minutes is vital for Madrid.

Among many things that Panathinaikos must do to slow down Madrid’s offense, the Greens need strong play in the front. Center Georgios Papagiannis played very well down the stretch for Coach Pitino and had a respectable 9 points and 7 boards against Madrid last time. Beyond his contributions in numbers, Papagiannis must be a physical presence to limit Walter Tavares, Gustavo Ayon and Felipe Reyes without getting into foul trouble. It’s a big ask, but important for his team’s success.

Tip: 2 (+7.0) at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 17/04/2019, 09:45 CET)

Anadolu Efes – Barcelona

It is a little bit of a historic occasion for Efes as it welcomes Barcelona for Game 1 of their best-of-five series. This will mark the first time Efes hosts a series opener in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague this century. Efes is also attempting to get its first series win in its sixth attempt. Meanwhile, Barcelona returns to the playoffs after missing them the last two years and will look to return to the Final Four for the first time since 2014. In its previous three attempts, Barcelona has never won a Game 1 on the road.

The team holding home-court advantage would not want to jeopardize losing it with a slow start to the series. Efes ranks second in two-point (58.9%) and three-point (40.7%) accuracy, which means that its offense is likely to get going at some point of the game. But Efes needs to make sure that does not happen too late, and suddenly find itself playing catch-up. Coach Ergin Ataman’s men need to bring focus and energy from the opening tip-off in this game, to take control, just like they did against this same opponent in Round 25.

Barcelona allowed 76.4 points per game during the regular season, second-fewest in the competition, and it has relied on its defense throughout the season. It will be important for Barcelona to slow down the Efes ballhandlers — Micic, Shane Larkin and Krunoslav Simon — and make sure Efes does not get into its free-flowing offense, which posts 85.4 points and 19.9 assists per contest. Efes is also extremely dangerous in transition, and preventing the hosts from getting their usual dosage of easy buckets will be one of Barcelona’s priorities.

Tip: 1 (-4.5) at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 17/04/2019, 09:45 CET)


CSKA Moscow – Baskonia

The playoffs begin the Russian capital with CSKA facing Baskonia in a repeat of their Round 30 game. CSKA has a long and impressive history both against Baskonia at home and the playoffs in general. The Russian giants have not lost a home game against Baskonia since 2005 and have not lost a playoff series this century. Baskonia has reasons for optimism after putting up a good fight in their most-recent meeting and slowly rebuilding chemistry with players returning from injuries.

Even after not playing to its standards for 30 minutes, one big quarter was enough for CSKA to take down Baskonia in Round 30. But that may not always be the case. What CSKA did well in that game was get good shots and make them (50.0% 2FG and 47.1% 3FG). However, it was outrebounded 28-35. Baskonia collected 12 offensive rebounds and turned them into 18 second-chance points. CSKA had just 6 second-chance points from 6 offensive rebounds. Closing that gap could pay dividends for Coach Itoudis’s men.

Baskonia committed the fifth-most turnovers in the league this season 12.8 per game. It made 15 in the Round 30 loss in Moscow. Every lost ball is a lost opportunity and in playoff basketball, one cannot let many opportunities go unused. Only Marcelinho Huertas (2.4 TOpg.) has committed more than 2 turnovers per game this season, so the effort must be a collective one. Look for Baskonia to be prepared for all of CSKA’s defensive looks to avoid wasting possessions with turnovers.

Tip: 1 (-8.5) at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 16/04/2019, 09:45 CET)

Fenerbahce – Zalgiris

It’s a series opener on the Asian side of Istanbul as Fenerbahce is prepared to host Zalgiris. Fenerbahce is undefeated on its home floor this season, and has won 17 EuroLeague games in a row at Ulker Sports and Event Hall dating back to last season. Fenerbahce is also 7-0 at home in the playoffs under coach Zeljko Obradovic. As Fenerbahce attempts to protect that streak and pave the way to its fifth consecutive Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Final Four appearance, upset-minded Zalgiris arrives red-hot to Game 1 with lots of momentum after a six-game winning streak to reach the playoffs at the last gasp.

Fenerbahce has not become the first team with 25 wins in the regular season by accident. Its defense allows league-low 75.8 points per game, and its offense has some of the best shooting percentages in EuroLeague history. Its 59.0% on two-pointers is the second-highest and 43.18% of three-pointers the third-highest accuracy in the EuroLeague this century. Despite such shooting prowess, Fenerbahce needs high energy and defensive intensity to grab control of the game, and the series.

In the two games earlier this season, Zalgiris did not manage to contain Kostas Sloukas. To steal Game 1, coach Sarunas Jasikevicius’s men need to start with defense on Fenerbahce’s playmaker while trying to slow the pace to cool down both the home players and their fans. Zalgiris will also need to make sure to control the defensive glass. Fenerbahce is tied for last place in offensive rebounds (8.2), and Zalgiris needs to make sure that those second-chance opportunities stay low.

Tip: Under 150.5 at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 16/04/2019, 09:45 CET)

Source: Euroleague.net
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Standings provided by Sofascore LiveScore

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Basketball tips NBA, Euroleague, Spain, Italy, Greece, Turkey

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NBA predictions today – Euroleague basketball predictions

We love the NBA. Our basketball tipster feels devotion with the Euroleague. That explains why basketball is our second biggest sport in our interest list. We provide basketball tips including daily NBA predictions as well as Euroleague tips. We follow all major leagues around Europe and the biggest international tournaments like the Eurobasket. So, why don’t you sit comfortably and check our basketball tips below?

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* Odds are correct at time of publishing and are subject to change.

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Euroleague Preview & Tips – Play-offs Game 2

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Euroleague Basketball Tips

Euro League basketball predictions appear under each mini game preview.

Real – Panathinaikos

Real Madrid held off a stirring comeback from Panathinaikos OPAP Athens to record a thrilling 75-72 home victory in the opening game of their playoffs series. Madrid was in front nearly all night and led by 14 early in the third quarter, but the Greens did not give up and roared in front 66-72 with 4 minutes left. Jeffery Taylor paced the winners with 13 points, Fabien Causeur scored 12. Nick Calathes recovered from a slow start to lead all scorers with 17 points for the Greens.

The hosts won the first game by the skin of their teeth but if one good thing comes out of that win is that now the team knows they can handle playoffs pressure. Panathinaikos had a solid 9 of 20 form the arc, so Madrid will have to watch for those open shots from long range, as well as the rebounds, as the guests managed to win the battle under the glass 38-39.

Panathinaikos was on the verge of upsetting the defending champs in Madrid, and that’s a good sign for future games. The problem for the Greens was that Madrid was consisten from the free throws line with 19 of 22 attempts, and in such close games, that is a huge factor. Also, Panathinaikos has the best passer in the league in Nick Calathes and got stuck at 10 assists, the third lowest mark for the team this season.

Tip: 2 at 3.15 with bet365
(Price correct at 17/04/2019, 09:05 CET)

Anadolu Efes – Barcelona

Anadolu Efes started the playoffs in style with a Game 1 win, but both teams know that it will be meaningless if Barcelona can even the series with a road win on Friday in Istanbul. The teams finished fourth and fifth, respectively in the regular season, but Efes finished stronger to get home-court advantage in the playoffs and for good reason. Efes is now 13-3 at home this season and Barcelona is 6-10 on the road.

The hosts gave no thought to Game 2 on Wednesday as they played their best players at length to open the series with a victory. However, the price paid is that four starters topped 30 minutes: Adrien Moerman (37:31), Krunoslav Simon (32:32), Vasilije Micic (31:08) and Bryant Dunston (30:05). Even though it’s the playoffs and players must give their all, fatigue may be a concern in a close Game 2. Efes will hope that the injured Brock Motum is available Friday and for bigger contributions from Rodrigue Beaubois, Dogus Balbay and Tibor Pleiss. Otherwise, Barcelona’s players – none of whom played even close to 30 – may have fresher legs down the stretch.

So many things went right for Barcelona in Game 1, yet Coach Pesic’s men still came up short. The visitors outrebounded Efes 32-38 and only committed 7 turnovers. Barcelona scored 18 second-chance points. The problem was shooting; Barcelona made just 21 of 44 two-pointers (47.7%) and 6 of 23 threes (26.1%). If Barcelona shot its regular season average on the same shots, it would have scored 80 points. A better shooting night is imperative to win Game 2 in Istanbul.

Tip: 1 (-4.0) at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 19/04/2019, 09:05 CET)


CSKA Moscow – Baskonia

The pivotal second game of this best-of-five series tips off in Moscow where host CSKA looks to double up its lead, while Baskonia seeks to tie the score before heading to Vitoria-Gasteiz for Game 3 – and, if necessary, Game 4 – next week. CSKA stretched its home-court winning streak against Baskonia to 15 games with its Game 1 victory and the last two of those have been decided by big quarters in the second half.

CSKA Moscow began the playoffs with a convincing 94-68 victory over KIROLBET Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz in Game 1 of their best-of-five series.

CSKA outplayed Baskonia in the paint in Game 1. The hosts won the rebounding battle 31-25 and shot 60% on two-pointers, while Baskonia settled for 54.5%. League-leading rebounder Vincent Poirier was held to just 5 boards and All-EuroLeague big man Toko Shengelia scored just 6 points off the bench. Othello Hunter and Nikita Kurbanov in the starting five and Kyle Hines and Alec Peters off the bench did their job against Baskonia’s bigger frontline and if they can do it again, CSKA may start thinking about a sweep.

Baskonia was unable to follow its plans on Tuesday in part because Coach Perasovic was dealing with foul trouble from the start. Point guard Luca Vildoza was called for 2 early fouls and his replacement, Marcelinho Huertas, soon found himself in a similar situation. Shavon Shields was the team’s most effective offensive weapon, but he fouled out after just 20 minutes on the floor. CSKA has many guards who specialize in drawing fouls and it will be imperative for the visitors’ backcourt to avoid that trap and be ready to follow the game plan for 40 minutes.

Tip: Over 163.0 at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 18/04/2019, 08:25 CET)

Fenerbahce – Zalgiris

Fenerbahce will try to remain perfect on its home floor and climb within one win of its fifth consecutive EuroLeague Final Four appearance when it welcomes Zalgiris for Game 2 of their best-of-five series. Fenerbahce has won all 16 home games this season and is on an 18-game home-court winning streak dating back to last season’s playoffs. Fenerbahce has also won all eight of its playoff games at home under Coach Obradovic, dating back to 2015.

Fenerbahce took control of the series behind a stellar defensive performance, beating Zalgiris 76-43 on Tuesday.

After an impressive display in Game 1, Fenerbahce’s challenge is to bring the same energy and focus into Game 2. Fenerbahce will want to avoid a letdown at all costs and try to get a quick start to carry the momentum from the first game. Fenerbahce will also like to get more from Jan Vesely, especially with Joffrey Lauvergne sidelined with an injury.

As Zalgiris head coach Sarunas Jasikevicius pointed out after the Game 1 loss, his team needs to find a way to answer Fenerbahce’s physicality. Zalgiris will need to take better care of the ball after committing 23 turnovers in the series opener. The visitors must also knock down some shots. Despite Fenerbahce’s defense, Zalgiris did find a bunch of open looks, but made just 3 of 16 three-point shots (18.8%) and will need to do much better than that to get a chance to win this contest.

Tip: 1 (-12.0) at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 18/04/2019, 08:25 CET)

Source: Euroleague.net
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Standings provided by Sofascore LiveScore

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Euroleague Preview & Tips – Round 30

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Euroleague Basketball Tips

Euro League basketball predictions appear under each mini game preview.

Find all 64 scenarios for the last day of Euroleague’s regular season here.

CSKA Moscow – Baskonia

Round 30 begins in the Russian capital with CSKA hosting Baskonia. CSKA has already locked up second place in the standings and cannot move up to first or down to third regardless of other results. Accordingly, the main goal for Coach Dimitris Itoudis’s men will be to stretch their winning streak to four games before the playoffs. Baskonia leads the hunt for one of the remaining playoff spots and with a win will clinch sixth place and a date with Real Madrid in the quarterfinals. A Baskonia loss will complicate matters with possibilities of tiebreakers that could see Coach Perasovic’s side fall as far back as ninth place.

The Baskonia defense this season has allowed an average of 79.6 points per game – and 84.6 on the road. CSKA has won its last 10 in a row in which it has scored at least 80 and is 19-2 overall this season with that many points, including 9-0 at home. With little pressure on CSKA, if Coach Itoudis’s men can play their normal offensive game and reach their average of 86.9 points, the hosts will be hard to beat.

One area where Baskonia has a clear advantage over CSKA is frontcourt size; CSKA plays with undersized centers and tall stretch 4s. With Vincent Poirier (2.13 meters), Johannes Voigtmann (2.14) and Ilimane Diop (2.11), Baskonia will almost always have the biggest man on the floor and with Toko Shengelia back, it the visitors will be even stronger. If Coach Perosavic can turn that advantage into points, it will help the Baskonia cause greatly.

Tip: 2 (+6.5) at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 04/04/2019, 02:00 CET)

Efes – Milano

Efes will close down its regular season campaign at home when it hosts Milan. With Efes already locked into fourth place – no results can bump it up to third or down to fifth – Coach Ergin Ataman’s men are in playoff preparation mode with a clash looming against FC Barcelona Lassa in the next stage. Milan must urgently snap a three-game slide to have a chance at reaching the playoffs. The Italian champs will be in a good position to do that with a win, but will still need other results to go their way. However, a loss ends any chance of Milan advancing.

Efes boasts one of the most efficient offenses in the EuroLeague and coupes that with a lineup that features some top-notch defenders. Milan has allowed the second-most points in the league this season (86.7 ppg.). Efes is 12-0 this season when it has scored at least 87 points and Milan is 5-9 this season when it allows that many. Scoring 87 – for an Efes team already averaging 84.9 per game – may be the magic number on Thursday.

In Milan’s lowest-scoring game of the season, it scored 66 points and managed to beat Olympiacos Piraeus in Round 26. In the team’s next three games, Milan averaged 86.7 points on offense, but lost all three due to a porous defense. In a tense Round 30 game, Milan may be better slowing the pace initially. Finding a way to control the pace and keep Efes guessing would be big for Coach Pianigiani’s men.

Tip: Under 174.5 at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 04/04/2019, 02:00 CET)

Panathinaikos – Buducnost

After missing in its first chance last week, Panathinaikos will try to claim its last chance to reach the playoffs when it hosts Buducnost. The Greek champs can finish anywhere from sixth place until 10th, but control their own destiny and will be at least seventh with a win – and sixth if they win and KIROLBET Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz loses. That latter scenario would set up a repeat of last season’s playoff with Panathinaikos facing Real Madrid. However, if the Greens lose, they can find themselves in a complicated tiebreak scenario with as many as six teams with 15 wins.

A high-scoring game is in Panathinaikos’s favor. Not only do the Greens average nearly 5 points more per game than Buducnost (79.4 to 74.6 ppg.), but Panathinaikos is 9-0 this season when it has scored at least 85 points. Buducnost has allowed an average of 84.9 points per game this season.

Many of Buducnost’s biggest wins this season have come thanks to excellent three-point shooting, which is perhaps Panathinaikos’s biggest weakness offensively. With Goga Bitadze’s presence to protect the rim, the visitors can put pressure on the Panathinaikos shooters and if Buducnost is knocking down its threes, it could spell a Round 30 upset.

Tip: 1 (-16.5) at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 04/04/2019, 02:00 CET)

Real – Zalgiris

Two of last season’s Final Four sides meet in their regular season finales when Madrid takes on Zalgiris in the Spanish capital. While the defending champs can use this game as playoff preparation – Madrid will finish the regular season in third place regardless of other games – Zalgiris is on a league-best five-game winning streak and still fighting for a playoff berth. Zalgiris is thoroughly dependent on other results, but will better its chances significantly with a victory. Still, Zalgiris can win and finish outside the playoff zone, or it can lose this game and wind up eighth.

Los Blancos rank third in the EuroLeague in scoring this season with 85.9 points per game. Coach Pablo Laso’s side had reached 90 points 11 times and won in each of those game. On the other hand, Zalgiris does not fare as well in high-scoring affairs and is 2-9 when it has surrendered at least 80 points. If Sergio Llull and Facu Campazzo can dictate a fast-paced tempo, Madrid will be favored to win its 12th straight game over Zalgiris.

The Zalgiris frontline has done well this season in limiting opponents to just 30.4 rebounds per game, but it has allowed many points in the paint. Opponents have averaged 54.1% shooting on two-pointers and this week will face some of the most dangerous scorers in the paint between Walter Tavares (76.1% 2FG) and Gustavo Ayon (68.5%). If the Zalgiris big men can control the rebounds and limit Madrid’s scoring in the paint, the Lithuanian champs will have better chances to win in Madrid.

Tip: 2 at 3.00 with bet365
(Price correct at 04/04/2019, 02:00 CET)

Source: Euroleague.net
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Standings provided by Sofascore LiveScore

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