One is an up-and-coming teenage sensation and the other is coming back from injury that sidelined him for the opening two months of the season, but Luka Doncic of Real Madrid and Mike James of Panathinaikos Superfoods Athens had one thing in common in Round 13; they accumulated the highest performance index ratings of all players of winning teams to earn the distinction as co-MVPs for Round 13 of the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Regular Season.
On Tuesday night, the 17-year-old Doncic shined with an all-round effort in his team’s 95-72 victory over visiting Brose Bamberg. The playmaker posted 16 points by making 3 of 6 two-pointers and 3 of 5 shots from long range along with 6 rebounds, 5 assists and 3 steals for an index rating of 25. A day later, James paced Panathinaikos to a 72-86 road win over EA7 Emporio Armani Milan with 19 points by making 5 of 7 attempts inside the arc and 3 of 6 from downtown. He also collected 7 rebounds, 3 assists and 1 steal.
The highest index rating of Round 13 came from FC Barcelona Lassa center Ante Tomic. In a loss to Baskonia Vitoria Gasteiz, Tomic posted 18 points and 7 rebounds, and drew 7 fouls to accumulate an index rating of 27. Rounding out the list of Round 13’s best performers were Will Clyburn of Darussafaka Dogus Istanbul and Jamel McLean of Milan, both having achieved an index rating of 24. Clyburn had 20 points with 7 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals in a key road win over city rival Fenerbahce Istanbul, while McLean collected 16 points, 9 rebounds and 2 assists off the bench against Panathinaikos.
∞∞∞ LANGFORD COMES BACK TO KAZAN LINE-UP, WINS ROUND 14 MVP ∞∞∞
Keith Langford missed Unics Kazan’s Round 13 game with an ankle injury. But on Thursday, he came back and dominated to lead Unics to a come-from-behind 80-88 road win at Zalgiris Kaunas, earning with it the title of MVP for Round 14 of the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Regular Season.
The league’s top scorer went for 26 points and drew 11 fouls for a performance index rating of 36, the highest of any player all week. Langford made 7 of 9 two-pointers, 2 of 5 threes and 6 of 8 free throws in addition to 4 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals in a spectacular game. In doing so, Langford claimed the fourth weekly MVP distinction of his EuroLeague career and joined reigning EuroLeague MVP Nando De Colo of CSKA Moscow as the only players to claim such honors twice this season.
Round 14’s second-highest index rating came from All-EuroLeague center Ekpe Udoh, who was instrumental in Fenerbahce Istanbul’s 79-95 overtime victory at CSKA Moscow with an index rating of 33. Udoh amassed 17 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals and 5 blocks in another impressive outing. Third best index rating belongs to Ante Tomic. The FC Barcelona Lassa big man dominated in an 89-75 win over EA7 Emporio Armani Milan, needing only 21 minutes to collect 19 points on 9-for-10 shooting, along with 6 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 blocks. Langford’s teammate Art Parakhouski was also instrumental in Unics’s victory.
The center made 10 of 11 shots en route to 24 points and also grabbed 4 rebounds for an index rating of 30, the fourth best in Round 14. Galatasaray Odeabank Istanbul big man Alex Tyus dominated the paint, but it was not enough as his team fell 76-86 to city rival Anadolu Efes Istanbul. Nonetheless, Tyus rocked with 15 points, 13 rebounds, 2 steals and 3 blocks for a career-best index rating of 29. Joining him with the same index rating is EA7 Milan’s forward Rakim Sanders who scored a career-high 27 points, with 4 rebounds, 2 steals and a block in the loss against Barcelona.