Lietuvos Rytas opened Eurocup season with a big win

Lietuvos RytasLietuvos Rytas made an impressive start of their European campaign. Lithuanian league runners-up hoster Asvel in the opening Eurocup game in Vilnius. Euroleague CEO Jordi Betomeu and ULEB president Eduardo Portela visited Lithuania and were present in Siemens Arena.

The game was close only in the first minutes. There were notable tactical changes in Rytas' game since Antanas Sireika took over as a head coach. The team was playing fast offensive game using one their main weapons three-point shots.

Visitors from France didn't let Lietuvos Rytas to make the gap too large. Ali Traore and J.R. Reynolds kept their team in the game with 16 and 17 points respectively.

Matthew Nielsen was watching the game from the VIP lounge as he was finalizing his contract with Pamesa. But it looks like the deal might not go so smoothly as expected. Spanish club is interested in Ruben Patterson. They are choosing between Nielsen and Patterson and, according to Spanish media, Patterson is a bit cheaper because Nielsen has quite big buy-out set in his current contract.

The absence of Matthew Nielsen wasn't notable on the court though. Milko Bjelica whose future was questioned in Rytas stepped up and scored 16 points making all 5 two-point shots and hitting 1 three-pointer out of three.

But the star of the night was Mindaugas Lukauskis. Lithuanian international seemed even more confident after his debut Olympics. He had 23 points with 4/8 from downtown. Lukauskis also made big dunk with a foul which encouraged his team to make a rally and seal the win.

Asvel were down by 14 points after 3 quarters but the hosts didn't let them come closer and made a strong run instead. Lietucos Rytas with a confident win 95-74.

Eduardo Portela revealed that Vilnius could be chosen to host Eurocup Final Eight this season. Lithuanian capital left a nice impression for the ULEB President.

95 – Lietuvos Rytas: Mindaugas Lukauskis 23, Milko Bjelica 16, Chuck Eidson 16, Branko Milisavljevic 10, Marijonas Petravicius 9, Donatas Zavackas 9, Michail Anisimov 7, Martynas Gecevicius 3, Marius Prekevicius 2.

74 – Asvel: J.R. Reynolds 17, Ali Traore 16, Amara Sy 12, Ben Dewar 10, Laurent Foirest 8, Eric Campbell 8, Aymeric Jeanneau 2, Chevon Troutman 1.