PAO adds sixth Euroleague cup
Panathinaikos won its sixth Euroleague basketball trophy after defeating Maccabi Tel Aviv 78-70 in the final at Barcelona yesterday evening. It was the third European crown for the Greeks in the last five years.
Panathinaikos was the better team throughout the game, thanks both to its strength under the basket and its diverse attacking strategies that destroyed the Tel Aviv club’s zone defense. Such was the defensive might of Panathinaikos that it managed to contain Maccabi to just 70 points, down from an average of over 80 points in the Euroleague.
The effective combination of Antonis Fotsis with Mike Batiste or Aleks Maric under the basket blocked a series of Maccabi shots, frustrating the Israelis, who at one point in the first half had made no more than just one of 13 two-point shots. Batiste was the European champion’s top scorer with 18 points, followed by Diamantidis (16) and Nicholas (14).
A day earlier Diamantidis had received the Euroleague’s MVP of the season award. He and Batiste were among the best competition’s five players, the organizers announced.
Basketball champions (left to right) Romain Sato, Stratos Perperoglou, Costas Tsartsaris, captain Dimitris Diamantidis, Mike Batiste and coach Zeljko Obradovic celebrate Panathinaikos’s sixth Euroleague trophy won at Barcelona last night with a 78-70 victory over Maccabi Tel Aviv.