Another weekend of interesting games in the Greek Basket League, all reviewed below:

A.O.Trikala- Panionios 83-84 o.t. (75-75)

An amazing buzzer-beater by Mark Carter, gave Panionios a big win on the road against Trikala. The home side found their way to the basket right from the beginning and got a 20-15 lead at the end of the 1st quarter. Panionios recovered, scored easy points but still trailed 39-34 after 20 minutes of basketball.

The third quarter was the one that turned the game around since Trikala did not start well and took them enough time to find their flow, but until then Panionios took the lead. The score after the 3rd quarter was 58-62. The last period of the game was intense since both team exchanged points and finally the visitors managed to take the game to overtime. But none of the two teams took a good lead on the extra 5 minutes, and it was Carter who scored and off-balanced shot after his own offensive rebound, and gave his team the win in one of the most heartbreaking games this season. McCollum scored 20 points for his team while Ewing Jr. had 18 for Trikala.

K.A.O.Dramas- A.E.Nea Kifissia 76-77 o.t. (71-71)

From Trikala we move on to Drama, and to another intense game that was concluded to a big buzzer beater for Tsaldaris in overtime. Bad start from the home team since they could hardly score during the first 10 minutes and they trailed by 6 (10-16). However they stepped up, closed the gap by the end of the half (32-33) and returned to the game.

After the break, the two teams entered the court determined to get a good lead. Quick-paced basketball gave KAOD a small lead at the end of the 3rd quarter, 48-45. The closing quarter of the match was even more interesting with the two teams exchanging points , resulting to a draw that led the game to O.T. After a tight 5-minutes extra time, Tsaldaris scored a clean buzzer beater from behind the arc, giving A.E.N.K a great win. Tsaldaris was also MVP of the game with 20 points, while Jones had 19 for the home team.

A.G.O.Rethimno- Kolossos Rhodes 86-67

An emphatic win for Rethimno against Kolossos Rhodes in Crete. The home team started the game very well, taking total control of both sides of the court and grabbing a 16-point lead (26-10) by the end of the quarter. Kolossos somewhat got back in the game during the second period, but they did not manage to reduce the gap. The halftime score was 52-31, a strong lead for AGOR.

Kolossos slightly improved his offensive game, but not enough to reach their opponents who were still leading quite easily (69-51) after 3 quarters of play. No hope left for the Rhodians who gave up during the 4th giving away and important win for Rethimno. Hart scored 30 points for the winners while for their opponents, Osby had 16.

P.A.O.K.- Aris 56-49

The big Thessaloniki rival game took place in Pylaia, PAOK’s homecourt, and the home team emerged winners in a very tight game. Aris had a struggle during the first quarter, allowing their opponents to take a decent lead 20-11 by the end of the quarter. After that, they picked up the pace, balanced the game but the point difference remained the same (34-25) until halftime.

The away side returned from the locker room in a fury, had a 5-0 run and cut the lead to 4 points. PAOK defended well but they met many difficulties in keeping their rivals in a safe distance so the quarter came to an end 43-41, with Aris back in the game. However PAOK’s class and bench solutions, gave them the energy they needed to defend, allow Aris only 8 points  throughout the last quarter and finally give them an important win. MVP of the game was Tsairelis who scored 13 and had big help from Payne and Cooper. Mourtos had a great game for the defeated side.

Panelefsiniakos- Panathinaikos 54-76

Healthy trip in Elefsina for the Greek Champions who met no difficulties against the local team. The “Greens” had a very strong start in order to secure an easy win, taking a 8-22 lead after the first 10 minutes. Panelefsiniakos improved their offense but still they had no solutions against their opponents. 22-40 was the halftime score.

A balanced 3rd quarter where both teams had good offensive flow, allowed Panathinaikos to increase their lead by 4 more points, almost “sending the game to bed”. 36-58 was the score after 3 quarters. During the concluding period of the game, Panelefsiniakos tried to cut the lead, but they did not managed to come closer to their opponents who tried some new tactics, and the final score indicates the fact that Panathinaikos had an easy night, preparing for the Euroleague clash against Barcelona. Great performance by Nikos Pappas who scored 15 points.

Apollon Patras- Ikaros Chalkidas 71-65

Difficult win for Apollon at home against Ikaros who struggles to avoid relegation. Good start from both sides, with good offensive plays and an emphatic 21-21 first quarter. After that both teams paid more attention to their defense, in a quarter that had many missed shots, slow rhythm and led to a tight 33-35 halftime score.

Apollon fans gave their team the needed boost to have a good 8-1 run right after the break, but Ikaros quickly brought the game in balance, with Aska leading the way. 53-53 was the score after 30 minutes of play. During the 4th, both teams tried to ensure a good defensive display. Apollon only received 12 points and during the last 2 minutes of the game, they made a 6-0 run when Ikaros had ran out of energy, and grabbed and important win that brought them in play-off position. Great game for Argiropoulos who scored 17, while for Ikaros Aska had another good game, this time scoring 21 points, however not being able to get his team out of relegation zone.

Olympiacos- Ilissiakos 83-73

Ilissiakos came down way harder than expected, forcing coach Bartzokas to warn his team for their very bad performance. However Jamario Moon’s debut gave the “Reds” a difficult win. The visitors started the game by defending in zone, a fact that led Olympiacos to miss many shots and have a 0/8 three-pointers, giving Ilissiakos a good 11-18 lead by the end of the first quarter. But Olympiacos did not really improve their image, and the away team got a +10 lead (14-24) in 12’. Ilissiakos did not stop there and got a 15 point lead by the 15th minute of the game alerting coach Bartzokas. Jamario Moon got in the game and gave his teammates the boost to run a 10-0 run and bring the game to 1 point (39-40) right before the halftime break.

The first offensive play of the second half was the key moment of the game since Olympiacos got in front, taking control of the match. The 3rd quarter came to a close 64-58, Ilissiakos tried their best but quickly ran out of solutions and the European Champions got a win that did not satisfy their fans or the coach. MVP was Moon who scored 15, while Xatzis scored 22 for the defeated side, that remains at the bottom of the table.

# Team MP W D L SF SA D P Last 5 matches
1 Panathinaikos 15 14 0 1 1168 897 +271 29 WWWWW
2 Panionios 15 12 0 3 1127 1073 +54 27 WWLWW
3 Olympiakos Piraeus 15 13 0 2 1224 949 +275 26 WLWWL
4 PAOK Saloniki 15 9 0 6 1148 1110 +38 24 WLWWL
5 AE NEA Kifisia 15 8 0 7 1062 1074 -12 23 WWWLW
6 KAO Dramas 15 7 0 8 1098 1139 -41 22 LLWLW
7 A.G.O Rethymno 15 6 0 9 1125 1171 -46 21 WLLLL
8 Apollon Patras 15 6 0 9 1075 1100 -25 21 WWLLL
9 Kolossos 15 6 0 9 1013 1114 -101 21 LWWWL
10 Aris BC 15 6 0 9 1024 1063 -39 21 LWLLW
11 AO Aiolos Trikallon 15 5 0 10 1092 1139 -47 20 LLLWW
12 Panelefsiniakos AOK 15 5 0 10 1038 1134 -96 20 LLLWL
13 Ikaros Halkidas 15 4 0 11 1073 1194 -121 19 LWLLL
14 Ilysiakos Athens 15 4 0 11 1001 1111 -110 19 LLWLW