EuroLeague preview: Barcelona host Darussafaka Dogus to end 2016

Euroleague Basketball

Barcelona square off against Darussafaka Dogus on Friday as the battle in the Catalan heartland marks the halfway point in the EuroLeague season.

Both sides come into this game with different form guides. Barcelona ended a three-game slide with a comfortable victory over EA7 Milano last week whereas Darussafaka Dogus head into round 15 with three straight wins and are currently 4-3 on the road this season.

Despite the momentum looking to be on the side of the visitors, Darussafaka Dogus coach David Blatt is expected a tough night against the EuroLeague veterans.

“There is no easy game in the EuroLeague,” states Blatt. “The game against Barcelona is no different. We’ve had a very succesful run of late. We hope to continue our momentum. Barcelona also have raised their level. They are playing very good basketball, so we can expect a very tough road match against a great opponent.”

∞∞∞ UNICS HOST PANATHINAIKOS IN INTERESTING ENCOUNTER ∞∞∞

An improving Unics Kazan (5-9) host Panathinaikos on Friday in an intriguing clash where the Greek side need to win to keep up the pace at the top of the table.

Panathinaikos are currently 9-5 but have only won away from the OAKA twice this season, with four losses.

“We have to win this game,” Panathinaikos coach Xavi Pascual said. “We played pretty good in our last game and we found our pace. Yes, we lost some games by one or two points, but I think that overall we are looking pretty good.

“Unics has a very good team, with a very good guard. We will have to be focused in offense, hopefully improving our long-range shooting. In the EuroLeague you always have to play well if you want to win on the road.”

∞∞∞ BASEMENT BATTLE IN ISTANBUL ∞∞∞

Galatasaray host Brose Bamberg on Friday in a battle at the bottom of the EuroLeague standings.

Bamberg are a respectable 5-9 in the standings but have only won once on the road this season. On the other side, all four of Galatasaray’s wins this season have come on home court.

“Galatasaray is a team loaded with individual talent,” Bamberg coach Andrea Trincheri says. “They have a great tradition. It’s a powerhouse, they have millions of fans. To play there is extremely tough. It’s the toughest court in the whole EuroLeague.

“I believe it will be even hard to have a timeout, because you will not be able to hear anything. So we need to raise the level of our communication.”