Home court advantage protected in last two Game 1 clashes, EuroLeague Playoff Game 1 round up
Both Olympiacos and Real Madrid were victorious on their respective home floors in their Game 1 clashes in the EuroLeague Playoffs.
Olympiacos extended its winning streak on its home floor in the Playoffs to ten games as they defeated Anadolu Efes 87-72.
The hosts took control early and subsequently took a double digit margin for the entire second half behind a stiff defence and a balanced offence that saw five Reds score in double figures.
Efes never came closer than ten points in the fourth quarter, but Olympiacos quickly pulled away to a 21-point margin as Vangelis Mantzaris paced the team with 14 points overall.
“I want to thank all our fans that came and supported us,” proclaimed Olympiacos coach Ioannis Sfairopoulos.
“We are just 1-0 up, and we need to stay humble, we need to stay focused, and we need to fight more in the next game because next game is more difficult than the first one. And in that game we want our fans again to support us.”
Top seeded Real Madrid overcame a slow start to beat Darussafaka Dogus 83-75 in the Spanish capital to go 1-0 up in their series.
Leading for the majority of the first half, Darussafaka were in control as they led by as many as nine points until a strong finish by Real led by Othello Hunter and Sergio Llull helped them pull to within a point at the half.
Then Madrid stepped up in the third period to gain the advantage to which they never relinquished.
“It was important to win this first game, which is always the most dangerous one, especially when you have the home-court advantage,” said Llull who had a team-high 23 points.
“We managed to win it, again with the help of our fans, who were unbelievable. We are happy and already thinking about the next game on Friday.”