Real Madrid bounce back to solidify top spot, EuroLeague Friday round up

Real Madrid reclaimed top spot in the EuroLeague as they comfortably saw off Crvena Zvezda 98-68 in the Spanish capital.

Jonas Maciulis, Jeffery Taylor and Gustavo Ayon led the winners with 12 points apiece with Sergio Llull, Anthony Randolph and Othello Hunter each adding 11 in a balanced scoring attack.

“It was important to play tough from the start,” Llull said. “Zvezda is a tough team and if you let them into the game, they can make things hard for you, but I believe that the team did a great job.

“We moved the ball well, played very good defence and are happy with this win. We are having a very good EuroLeague season. We lost some games along the way which we could have won, but all teams are losing here and there.”

Marko Simonovic led Red Star with 13 points.

Brose Bamberg kept its slim Playoff hopes alive as a strong second quarter led to a comprehensive 87-68 win at Anadolu Efes.

A 16-0 burst by the German side to start the second quarter ultimately put Efes to the sword as the hosts were held to just nine points in that period.

“It was important to start the second half doing the stuff we were doing in the first half, we managed to do this and that’s why we won,” said Bamberg’s Leon Radosevic who led the way with 16 points.

“We know they’re a physical team, they usually outrebound every opponent, so our focus was to stop their rebounds and manage their physicality.”

Olympiacos secured its Playoff berth by holding off visiting Darussafaka Dogus 81-73 at Peace and Friendship Stadium on Friday night.

The Reds improved to 18-7 to remain in third place in the standings, while Darussafaka dropped to 12-13 and stays in ninth.

Khem Birch collected 13 points for the winners who also welcomed Vassilis Spanoulis to the line-up.