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Thread: Italian Serie A 2011-2012 news & transactions

  1. #161
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    Its surely been a while since they were challenged this much domestically though? Cantu can challenge Siena (even though with all their injuries they probably dont have quite enough in playoff situation) and Milano could give them a real scare. Scarilo's sniping about how Pianigiani shouldn't be coaching the NT added a little bit more intrigue too. But yeah, they still have to be favourites.

  2. #162
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    Injuries have been the story of the season for Siena and that's the main reason why even though I still consider them as favourites I wouldn't be that sure they will win again. They have Kaukenas back and we all know how much he brings to the team, but he also comes from a very serious injury so...Moss, Thornton and Michelori are out indefinitely, Maciulis just came and will need to adjust, Lavrinovic and Stonerook constantly battling with injuries that prevent them from practicing during the week.

    Unfortunately Cantý is facing similar issues with key players like Micov, Basile and Shermadini (out for the season). Scekic would be very useful now but he's out for the season too.

    Milano is on a hot streak. We all knew they needed time to put all things together, this season they only managed to reach top 16 in Euroleague, but looking at their roster it's clear they have a deep and talented team that could've made it to the quarterfinals, but at those levels they still depended too much on Hairston who was injured during all that phase. Most players, especially Cook and Bouroussis, are in great shape since a couple of months or so, unfortunately they lost Bremer who had a huge impact since his arrival, but they seem to have found chemistry at last. They're also adding a new player to strengthen the roster, probably Justin Dentmon. I think they have chances to finally challenge Siena this time.

  3. #163
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    Siena lost at home again yesterday (69-78) to Virtus Bologna and the final score is not even fair as Virtus managed to keep a wide lead throughout the 2nd half. Milano won at Treviso and it's their 7th in a row, I'm definitely convinced they have serious chances to stop Siena's dominance this time. I'd say the same for Cantý, but the loss of Shermadini and Micov might be just too much for them.

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    Maciulis and Lavrinovic led Siena in a blowout game against "Fabi Shoes" (113:57). They scored 20 and 16 points, respectively. Lavrinovic was perfect (7/7 2PT, 2/2 FT) and Maciulis was close to it (4/4 2PT, 3/5 3PT, 3/3 FT). Kaukenas had 3 points (1/6 2PT, 0/1 3PT, 1/2 FT) - could have done better, but he's back from injury and still trying to adjust / or had a bad day.

  5. #165
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    Final standings

    1 - Siena 48 pts (24-8)
    2 - Milano 44 pts (22-10)
    3 - Cantý 42 pts (21-11)
    4 - Sassari 40 pts (20-12)
    5 - Virtus Bologna 40 pts (20-12)
    6 - Pesaro 38 pts (19-13)
    7 - Venezia 34 pts (17-15)
    8 - Varese 34 pts (17-15)

    9 - Avellino 30 pts (15-17)
    10 - Cremona 28 pts (14-18)
    11 - Treviso 26 pts (13-19)
    12 - Biella 26 pts (13-19)
    13 - Roma 26 pts (13-19)
    14 - Teramo 24 pts (12-20)
    15 - Montegranaro 24 pts (12-20)
    16 - Caserta 24 pts (12-20)
    17 - Casale M. 16 pts (8-24)

    Teams from #1 to #8 qualified to the playoffs
    Casale got relegated

  6. #166
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    Stat leaders

    POINTS PER GAME
    1 - Andre Smith (Caserta) 18.4 ppg
    2 - Aubrey Coleman (Biella) 18.3 ppg
    3 - James White (Pesaro) 17.4 ppg
    4 - Drake Diener (Sassari) 16.7 ppg
    5 - Ricky Hickman (Pesaro) 16.1 ppg
    6 - Marques Green (Avellino) 16.1 ppg
    7 - Mustafa Shakur (Casale M.) 16 ppg
    8 - Taquan Dean (Avellino) 16 ppg
    9 - Jacob Pullen (Biella) 16 ppg
    10 - Clay Tucker (Roma) 15.4 ppg

    REBOUNDS PER GAME
    1 - Viktor Sanikidze (Virtus Bologna) 10.9 rpg
    2 - Linton Johnson (Avellino) 10.1 rpg
    3 - Dejan Ivanov (Montegranaro) 8.2 rpg
    4 - Andre Smith (Caserta) 7.6 rpg
    5 - Jumaine Jones (Pesaro) 7.3 rpg
    6 - Angelo Gigli (Virtus Bologna) 7.2 rpg
    7 - David Chiotti (Casale M.) 7 rpg
    8 - Albert Miralles (Biella) 6.9 rpg
    9 - Greg Brunner (Cantý) 6.9 rpg
    10 - Tony Easley (Sassari) 6.5 rpg

    ASSISTS PER GAME
    1 - Marques Green (Avellino) 6.5 apg
    2 - Travis Diener (Sassari) 5.5 apg
    3 - Andre Collins (Caserta) 5.2 apg
    4 - Omar Cook (Milano) 5.1 apg
    5 - Mustafa Shakur (Casale M.) 4.3 apg
    6 - Giuseppe Poeta (Virtus Bologna) 3.8 apg
    7 - Gal Mekel (Treviso) 3.7 apg
    8 - Bo McCalebb (Siena) 3.5 apg
    9 - Rok Stipcevic (Varese) 3.4 apg
    10 - Drake Diener (Sassari), Dee Brown (Teramo), Robert Fultz (Teramo), Jacob Pullen 3.3 apg

    STEALS PER GAME
    1 - Aubrey Coleman (Biella) 3.3 spg
    2 - Marques Green (Avellino) 2.5 spg
    3 - Daniel Hackett (Pesaro) 2.4 spg
    4 - Quinton Hosley (Sassari) 2.1 spg
    5 - Taquan Dean (Avellino) 2 spg
    6 - Fabio Di Bella (Montegranaro) 1.9 spg
    7 - Giuseppe Poeta (Virtus Bologna) 1.7 spg
    8 - Ricky Hickman (Pesaro) 1.7 spg
    9 - Tim Bowers (Venezia) 1.7 spg
    10 - Jacob Pullen (Biella) 1.7 spg

    BLOCKS PER GAME
    1 - Marco Cusin (Pesaro) 1.5 bpg
    2 - Linton Johnson (Avellino) 1.3 bpg
    3 - Szymon Szewczyk (Venezia) 1.3 bpg
    4 - Tony Easley (Sassari) 1.1 bpg
    5 - Giorgi Shermadini (Cantý) 1 bpg
    6 - Viktor Sanikidze (Virtus Bologna) 0.9 bpg
    7 - Jeff Viggiano (Treviso) 0.8 bpg
    8 - Uros Slokar (Roma) 0.8 bpg
    9 - Ioannis Bouroussis (Milano) 0.8 bpg
    10 - Andrea Crosariol (Roma) 0.8 bpg

    2P%
    1 - Angelo Gigli (Virtus Bologna) 67.3%
    2 - Tony Easley (Sassari) 64.7%
    3 - Albert Miralles (Biella) 64.4%
    4 - Marco Cusin (Pesaro) 63.1%
    5 - Bo McCalebb (Siena) 63%
    6 - Andre Smith (Caserta) 62.5%
    7 - Uros Slokar (Roma) 61.4%
    8 - Szymon Szewczyk (Venezia) 61.1%
    9 - Benjamin Ortner (Treviso) 60.8%
    10 - Ioannis Bouroussis (Milano) 60.4%

    3P%
    1 - Antonis Fotsis (Milano) 43.8%
    2 - Nicolas Mazzarino (Cantý) 43.2%
    3 - Luigi Datome (Roma) 43.2%
    4 - Maarty Leunen (Cantý) 42.6%
    5 - Travis Diener (Sassari) 41.7%
    6 - Kristjan Kangur (Varese) 41.7%
    7 - Nemanja Gordic (Roma) 41.2%
    8 - Vanja Plisnic (Sassari) 41%
    9 - Szymon Szewczyk (Venezia) 41%
    10 - Taquan Dean (Avellino), Ricky Hickman (Pesaro) 40.5%

    FT%
    1 - Alex Righetti (Caserta) 93.1%
    2 - Marques Green (Avellino) 87%
    3 - Sani Becirovic (Treviso) 85.5%
    4 - Clay Tucker (Roma) 85.3 %
    5 - David Andersen (Siena) 84.5%
    6 - Ivan Zoroski (Montegranaro) 84.1%
    7 - Andre Collins (Caserta) 84%
    8 - Fabio Di Bella (Montegranaro) 82.8%
    9 - Drake Diener (Sassari) 82.7%
    10 - Coby Karl (Montegranaro) 82.5%

  7. #167
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    Roma and Treviso seem to have really fallen away. I know Treviso were affected by the lockout ending, but is Djordjevic going to stay next year?

    Strong finish for Cremona though.

  8. #168
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jazz View Post
    Roma and Treviso seem to have really fallen away. I know Treviso were affected by the lockout ending, but is Djordjevic going to stay next year?

    Strong finish for Cremona though.
    Yep, Treviso almost had to rebuild its roster as the lockout ended. They lost Adrien, Moore and Scalabrine, but also Gentile who went to Milano. They brought in Jobey Thomas, Jeff Viggiano and Marcus Goree and were forced to give minutes to young guys like De Nicolao and Cuccarolo, I'd say Djordjevic did a pretty good job both domestically and in Eurocup with the team he had. Even when they lost they always fought hard, I really liked their attitude.

    Anyway, both Treviso and Roma are facing hard times, as their chairmen (Benetton and Toti) officially resigned and there's a lot of uncertainty on those teams. They're not going to compete for titles or in European cups for sure, anyway it would be nice if teams with their tradition will manage to go on, Italian basketball needs them both.

    As for Cremona, a small masterpiece by coach Caja, indeed. Good for them to get rid of Tomo Mahoric who did an awful job by signing a bunch of inadequate players (Brandon Thomas, Edin Bavcic, Saulius Kuzminskas...) and building one of the weakest rosters in the league. Caja inherited a team with a lot of issues and scraping the bottom of the table, but did a hell of a job in strengthening the roster with players like Rich, Lighty and Tusek, but primarily he gave his guys a huge mental boost, so that they actually showed a totally different attitude on the court. A potential candidate for the coach of the year award in Italy.

  9. #169
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    The forum was down in the past few days, meanwhile playoffs have started

    #1 Siena - #8 Varese
    #4 Sassari - #5 Virtus Bologna

    #2 Milano - #7 Venezia
    #3 Cantý - #6 Pesaro

    GAME 1
    Siena-Varese 92-57 - D.Andersen 17 pts + 5 rebs in 19 mins (4/7 2p, 1/2 3p, 6/6 ft), R.Kaukenas 14 pts + 1 reb + 1 ast (3/5 2p, 1/2 3p, 5/5 ft), K.Lavrinovic 12 pts + 3 rebs + 1 ast (3/5 2p, 0/2 3p, 6/6 ft), M.Carraretto 11 pts + 1 blk + 1 stl + 1 ast (0/1 2p, 3/5 3p, 2/2 ft), B.McCalebb 10 pts + 2 stls + 2 asts (3/4 2p, 4/4 ft) ; Y.Diawara 11 pts + 8 rebs + 2 asts (3/3 2p, 1/5 3p, 2/2 ft), K.Kangur 11 pts + 1 reb + 2 stls + 4 asts (2/4 2p, 2/5 3p, 1/4 ft)

    GAME 2
    Siena-Varese 88-72 - K.Lavrinovic 19 pts + 5 rebs (7/8 2p, 1/1 3p, 2/6 ft), P.Aradori 15 pts + 2 rebs + 1 stl + 4 asts (3/4 2p, 2/3 3p, 3/3 ft), B.McCalebb 13 pts + 2 rebs + 1 stl + 2 asts (5/7 2p, 3/3 ft), B.Thornton 10 pts + 1 blk + 2 asts (2/3 2p, 2/4 3p) ; Y.Diawara 16 pts + 5 rebs + 1 ast (5/10 2p, 2/5 3p), R.Stipcevic 15 pts + 2 rebs + 4 asts (4/5 2p, 2/4 3p, 1/2 ft), G.Ganeto 11 pts + 2 rebs (2/3 2p, 2/3 3p, 1/2 ft), D.Fajardo 10 pts + 6 rebs + 1 stl + 1 ast (4/8 2p, 0/3 3p, 2/2 ft)

    GAME 3
    Varese-Siena 73-70 - R.Stipcevic 19 pts + 4 rebs + 3 stls + 3 asts (2/4 2p, 3/6 3p, 6/8 ft), Y.Diawara 12 pts + 1 reb + 2 stls (6/7 2p, 0/4 3p) ; R.Kaukenas 16 pts + 7 rebs + 3 stls + 1 ast (3/7 2p, 2/5 3p, 4/4 ft), K.Lavrinovic 12 pts + 8 rebs + 1 blk + 1 stl + 2 asts (3/8 2p, 0/2 3p, 6/7 ft), B.McCalebb 11 pts + 3 rebs + 1 stl + 5 asts (3/6 2p, 1/3 3p, 2/4 ft)

    Siena leads the series 2-1. Quite unexpectedly, Varese kept the series alive tonight, after a true blowout in game 1 and another clear loss in game 2. They started bad even game 3 and trailed in double digits in the first part of the game, but they managed to come back and go ahead decisively in the 4th quarter for a deserved win. Varese may not be the most talented team in the league but confirms to be tough to kill at home. That said, although Siena's not at the levels of the past few seasons, I would be very very surprised to see them losing again in game 4.


    GAME 1
    Sassari-Virtus Bologna 81-72 - D.Diener 26 pts + 7 rebs + 2 stls + 3 asts (5/7 2p, 5/11 3p, 1/1 ft), T.Easley 15 pts + 8 rebs + 2 blks + 1 stl (6/9 2p, 3/5 ft), T.Diener 15 pts + 3 rebs + 8 asts (6/9 2p, 1/4 3p), V.Plisnic 11 pts + 2 rebs + 1 blk + 1 stl (4/6 2p, 1/3 3p) ; P.Koponen 19 pts + 1 reb + 2 stls + 1 ast (3/6 2p, 3/7 3p, 4/5 ft), C.Douglas-Roberts 18 pts + 7 rebs + 2 blks + 2 stls (5/12 2p, 1/5 3p, 5/5 ft), A.Gigli 10 pts + 9 rebs + 1 ast (4/5 2p, 0/1 3p, 2/2 ft)

    GAME 2
    Sassari-Virtus Bologna 89-86 (O.T.) - D.Diener 29 pts + 5 rebs + 1 stl + 5 asts (6/13 2p, 3/4 3p, 8/11 ft), T.Easley 20 pts + 11 rebs + 3 blks + 1 stl (9/14 2p, 2/4 ft), Q.Hosley 14 pts + 7 rebs + 1 blk + 3 stls + 2 asts (4/9 2p, 1/4 3p, 3/4 ft), T.Diener 13 pts + 2 rebs + 9 asts (5/10 2p, 1/3 3p) ; P.Koponen 19 pts + 2 rebs + 1 stl + 5 asts (4/8 2p, 2/5 3p, 5/6 ft), G.Poeta 13 pts + 1 reb (3/5 2p, 2/8 3p, 1/2 ft), V.Sanikidze 12 pts + 12 rebs + 1 stl + 1 ast (3/10 2p, 2/5 3p), C.Douglas-Roberts 12 pts + 8 rebs + 1 blk (5/13 2p, 0/1 3p, 2/4 3p), A.Gigli 10 pts + 8 rebs + 1 blk (3/7 2p, 4/6 ft), K.Lang 10 pts + 5 rebs (3/6 2p, 4/4 ft)

    GAME 3
    Virtus Bologna-Sassari 71-72 - P.Koponen 21 pts + 4 rebs + 3 asts (1/3 2p, 4/7 3p, 7/8 ft), A.Gigli 14 pts + 13 rebs + 1 blk + 2 stls (5/8 2p, 4/6 ft), G.Poeta 10 pts + 3 rebs + 1 stl (4/5 2p, 0/3 3p, 2/3 ft) ; Q.Hosley 18 pts + 14 rebs + 2 asts (6/15 2p, 2/3 3p, 0/2 ft), T.Diener 16 pts + 4 rebs + 2 asts (2/11 2p, 4/7 3p), D.Diener 12 pts + 3 rebs + 1 ast (3/7 2p, 1/5 3p, 3/4 ft)

    Life's funny, as the most balanced series in these playoffs is the first to end with a sweep. Besides game 1 that Sassari fully deserved to win, Virtus stayed ahead for almost all the time in the next two games but then they managed to blow both of them away in the final seconds with Sassari nailing two buzzer beaters...They could've been ahead 2-1 with homecourt advantage, yet they're out 0-3. And yes, small Sassari - at its second season ever in Serie A - is the first team to clinch a semifinal berth, it will be them waiting for Siena, not the opposite, that's crazy. Let me say I really enjoy this team, Meo Sacchetti (btw named coach of the year in Italy) is doing a terrific job with a bunch of players that perfectly embody his basketball philosophy. A sort of small family with the Dieners as the main forces, but all of the others are always giving their own contribution, I'm really glad for their amazing campaign and I hope this team won't be dismantled next year. A darker scenario for Virtus Bologna, as Sabatini confirmed he will leave and told the press the team will likely have a minimal budget for next season, so tonight it should have been the last game with this jersey for Koponen and Sanikidze. Expect the Finnish guard to sign for some EL team if he stays in Europe, he really had a breakout season and he's ready to have an impact playing for bigger teams. Siena is rumored to be interested in both players, but nothing's official and if they are going to lower their finances it may be that this duo will move elsewhere (personally I'd only sign Koponen, though ).

    Drake Diener's buzzer beater in the overtime of game 2


    Manuel Vanuzzo's buzzer beater in game 3


    As for the two other series, I will post tomorrow.

  10. #170
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    Diener's shot was unbelievable.

    Do you think Sassari can give Siena a scare though boyd? Assuming Siena do progress...

  11. #171
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jazz View Post
    Diener's shot was unbelievable.

    Do you think Sassari can give Siena a scare though boyd? Assuming Siena do progress...
    They could win a game and fight hard, but I would be upset if they bring the series to game 5, although Siena is no more unbeatable in this league they remain the favorites.

    Great game by Pesaro that stays alive, while Milano completes a heroic comeback and seals the deal.

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    Yeah, how would you rate the season Pesaro's Daniel Hackett is having? Do you expect him to move in the summer?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jazz View Post
    Yeah, how would you rate the season Pesaro's Daniel Hackett is having? Do you expect him to move in the summer?
    I like him, he played well despite a poor % from beyond the arc, too bad since I expected him to turn into a more consistent outside threat. But that doesn't say it all, he's not such a poor shooter, as he hit clutch threes several times this season. Also, he had to play alongside guys like White, Jones, Hickman who all have plenty of points in their hands, but he managed to have a great impact. He's versatile, yet he has no definite role but can do a lot of things and with his size and athleticism he's very good in posting up opponents and he's the team's main defensive specialist. I like his attitude, he wants to win and he's clutch. He just needs to improve his 3-pt shot and hopefully keep his cool to avoid unnecessary fouls. He will get offers for sure (from what I hear he has offers from Italy and Spain), I don't know if he moves since Pesaro it's his home but it could be a very likely scenario.

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    GAME 1
    Milano-Venezia 92-63 - L.Radosevic 18 pts + 4 rebs + 1 stl in 20 mins (7/9 2p, 4/6 ft), S.Mancinelli 16 pts + 3 rebs + 1 blk + 1 stl + 2 asts (5/7 2p, 2/3 3p, 0/2 ft), A.Gentile 15 pts + 2 rebs + 1 blk + 1 stl + 2 asts in 17 mins (3/5 2p, 3/3 3p), M.Hairston 12 pts + 3 rebs + 1 stl + 3 asts (6/8 2p, 0/2 3p), J.Dentmon 11 pts + 2 rebs + 1 stl + 3 asts (3/5 2p, 1/4 3p, 2/2 ft) ; G.Rosselli 13 pts + 3 rebs (4/6 2p, 1/3 3p, 2/3 ft), T.Slay 11 pts + 3 rebs + 2 asts (5/6 2p, 0/1 3p, 1/2 ft)

    GAME 2
    Milano-Venezia 89-83 - I.Bouroussis 20 pts + 3 rebs in 20 mins (7/10 2p, 1/2 3p, 3/5 ft), A.Fotsis 19 pts + 12 rebs + 1 stl + 1 ast (3/4 2p, 2/4 3p, 7/9 ft), M.Hairston 15 pts + 1 reb + 2 blk + 2 asts (5/6 2p, 0/2 3p, 5/5 ft), A.Gentile 13 pts + 7 rebs + 1 ast (2/5 2p, 1/4 3p, 6/6 ft) ; A.Young 21 pts + 2 rebs + 1 stl + 1 ast (7/15 2p, 2/6 3p, 1/1 ft), K.Clark 17 pts + 2 rebs + 1 stl + 3 asts (1/5 2p, 5/7 3p), T.Bowers 14 pts + 4 rebs + 5 asts (4/11 2p, 1/1 3p, 3/3 ft), T.Slay 11 pts + 5 rebs + 2 asts (5/7 2p, 1/2 ft)

    GAME 3
    Venezia-Milano 80-82 - K.Clark 20 pts + 1 reb + 3 stls + 6 asts (5/5 2p, 2/6 3p, 4/4 ft), T.Slay 15 pts + 5 rebs (5/10 2p, 1/3 3p, 2/2 ft), G.Rosselli 13 pts + 8 rebs + 4 stls + 5 asts (3/5 2p, 0/3 3p, 7/9 ft), A.Young 11 pts + 1 reb + 2 stls + 1 ast (3/8 2p, 1/2 3p, 2/3 ft) ; M.Hairston 20 pts + 2 rebs + 2 blks + 1 stl + 1 ast (5/8 2p, 3/3 3p, 1/2 ft), O.Cook 12 pts + 3 rebs + 6 asts (1/1 2p, 2/6 3p, 4/6 ft), S.Mancinelli 12 pts + 2 rebs + 2 asts (6/9 2p, 0/1 3p), A.Gentile 11 pts + 2 rebs + 1 blk + 1 stl (4/6 2p, 3/4 ft), J.Giachetti 10 pts + 3 rebs + 2 asts (1/2 2p, 2/6 3p, 2/2 ft)


    Milano sweeps Venezia but also this series was a lot more tight and balanced than the final 3-0 says. Venezia did it all to blow away two games they were in control of in the final minute. In game 2 they were up by 2 (81-83) with one minute left but after Rocca made it 2/2 from the line to tie the game up, Young hurried a crazy shot instead of going for a better selection, giving Milano the go-ahead possession and Fotsis was fould and scored 2 free throws to give his team the lead. Trailing by two and after a timeout, Venezia still with enough seconds to throw the ball in from halfcourt and go for a good shot, but Rosselli threw the ball away and basically the game ended. Yesterday in game 3, Venezia managed to blow away a 9-pt lead with 3 minutes left (73-64) with an incredible streak of turnovers and bad shots that allowed Milano to come back and go ahead in the score (78-80). Rosselli was fouled and proved to be cold-blooded from the free throw line to tie the game up (80-80) with a few seconds left, but then Hairston sank the game-winning shot almost on the buzzer to shut down Venezia. Too bad it ended this way, they would have deserved to play at least one more game, still a very positive season for a wealthy and newly-promoted team. Milano not playing at its best but proving to finally have a winning mentality, which could be a huge boost in their quest for the title.


    GAME 1
    Cantý-Pesaro 78-72 - M.Markoishvili 20 pts + 4 rebs + 1 stls + 2 asts in 25 mins (6/10 2p, 2/3 3p, 2/2 ft), N.Mazzarino 15 pts + 1 reb + 2 stls + 3 asts (5/7 3p), D.Perkins 11 pts + 9 rebs + 1 stl + 3 asts (4/6 2p, 0/3 3p, 3/6 ft), G.Brunner 11 pts + 4 rebs + 1 blk + 1 ast (5/6 2p, 1/2 ft), M.Leunen 10 pts + 3 rebs + 5 asts (4/5 2p, 0/3 3p, 2/3 ft) ; D.Hackett 20 pts + 5 rebs + 2 stls + 3 asts (4/8 2p, 3/4 3p, 3/4 ft), R.Hickman 15 pts + 1 reb + 2 blks + 1 stl (5/7 2p, 1/6 3p, 2/2 ft), J.White 14 pts + 4 rebs + 2 asts (7/11 2p, 0/2 3p)

    GAME 2
    Cantý-Pesaro 74-47 - M.Leunen 13 pts + 3 rebs + 1 blk + 1 stl + 5 asts (1/3 2p, 3/4 3p, 2/2 ft), D.Perkins 13 pts + 6 rebs + 3 stls (3/9 2p, 2/5 3p, 1/2 ft), N.Mazzarino 10 pts + 2 stls + 5 asts (3/7 2p, 1/4 3p, 2/2 ft) ; R.Hickman 18 pts + 4 rebs + 1 ast (3/7 2p, 2/6 3p, 6/8 ft), J.White 14 pts + 5 rebs + 2 asts (5/7 2p, 0/1 3p, 4/8 ft)

    GAME 3
    Pesaro-Cantý 91-78 - J.Jones 22 pts + 8 rebs + 2 stls + 1 ast (4/5 2p, 3/4 3p, 5/5 ft), J.White 21 pts + 7 rebs + 1 stl + 3 asts (7/10 2p, 2/4 3p, 1/1 ft), R.Hickman 18 pts + 4 rebs + 3 stls + 4 asts (2/4 2p, 3/4 3p, 5/5 ft), M.Cusin 10 pts + 3 rebs (4/5 2p, 2/2 ft) ; G.Brunner 18 pts + 8 rebs + 1 blk + 1 stl + 1 ast (9/10 2p), N.Mazzarino 14 pts + 3 stls + 2 asts (4/6 3p, 2/2 ft), M.Markoishvili 11 pts + 4 stls + 3 asts (1/4 2p, 3/6 3p), D.Perkins 10 pts + 3 stls + 1 ast (1/3 2p, 2/4 3p, 2/2 ft)

    Cantý leads the series 2-1
    Very interesting challenge here, these teams faced each other 6 times this season (including regular season, Italian Cup and playoffs) and currently they're 3-3. Cantý seemed to be on his way to sweep Pesaro after a quite comfortable win in game 1 and a real blowout in the following game, with the opponents appearing quite tired in this final stretch of the season. But game 3 was very different, with Jumaine Jones finally back at his levels and the whole team giving a huge offensive effort. Also, Cantý still facing a lot of injuries with Shermadini still out, Micov not completeley recovered and, last news, the injury occured yesterday to Maarty Leunen. Playing again at home tomorrow, Pesaro has now a strong chance to bring this series to game 5, we'll see whether Cantý will be once again able to overcome bad luck.

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    QUARTERFINALS GAME 4
    Varese-Siena 75-91 - Y.Diawara 26 pts + 7 rebs + 1 stl + 1 ast (1/3 2p, 6/10 3p, 6/6 ft), P.Goss 20 pts + 4 rebs + 2 stls + 2 asts (7/9 2p, 2/2 3p), D.Fajardo 13 pts + 7 rebs + 2 stls + 1 ast (6/9 2p, 1/2 ft) ; D.Andersen 19 pts + 6 rebs + 1 stl + 1 ast in 21 mins (7/10 2p, 1/1 3p, 2/2 ft), K.Lavrinovic 15 pts + 3 rebs + 1 stl + 2 asts in 18 mins (6/8 2p, 1/2 3p), B.McCalebb 15 pts + 2 rebs + 2 asts (2/3 2p, 3/5 3p, 2/2 ft), P.Aradori 11 pts + 1 reb + 3 stls + 3 asts (2/3 2p, 2/5 3p, 1/1 ft)

    Not much to say here, Varese even did more than expected extending the series to 4 games. Big men made the difference yesterday, with Andersen and particularly Lavrinovic confirming to be red hot lately. Let's see if Cantý clinches its semifinal berth tonight or we'll have to wait for game 5.

    Some news
    - Newly-promoted Reggio Emilia trying to confirm G/F Donell Taylor. They offered him a slightly higher wage, but meanwhile other teams from LegaDue (which he won for two consecutive seasons) and from foreign leagues appear to be very interested. The chances he remains are quite high, though. Reggio Emilia wanted to confirm PG Dawan Robinson too, but he recently had a car accident and broke his forearm, so he will be sidelined for about three months and this could get the deal messed up. The team is also considering whether to keep or not veteran Lithuanian sharpshooter Donatas Slanina.

    - Papers today reported that Siena and Viktor Sanikidze already reached a verbal agreement for a two-yr deal (400.000 dollars per year), but the player just changed his agent and seems willing to wait as he's getting offers from other teams in Europe. Considering that and his poor latest performances, Siena may just focus on other players and let him go. David Moss, whose contract expires at the end of these playoffs, may be headed to Real Madrid.
    Milano and Siena are chasing Finnish guard Petteri Koponen, who also had a very good offer from Russia. At the moment, Siena appears to be closer to him.

    - Biella trying to resign veteran Slovenian PF/C Goran Jurak, who would like to finish his career there and considering his good campaign he's looking for a multi-yr deal at a higher wage. Negotiations just started, anyway I don't think he will get more than he earned this season. Also, it seems that Biella will heavily rely on Greek youngster Lynos Chrysikopoulos, who had very limited playing time due to injuries, so it's unlikely he's headed back to Greece on loan.

    - Cantý looking to strengthen the roster starting from Italian players. The team is very interested in SF Luigi Datome (Roma; 14.1 ppg) and youngster Achille Polonara (Teramo; 8.2 ppg).

    - With Cremona facing a very difficult situation, Marko Milic, who just completed his third season with the team, said he's considering to leave to head back to Slovenia and hopefully rejoin his former team Union Olimpija, to finish his career there.

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    QUARTERFINALS GAME 4

    Pesaro-Cantý 80-68 - R.Hickman 20 pts + 6 rebs + 2 stls + 5 asts (3/5 2p, 4/6 3p, 2/2 ft), J.White 15 pts + 2 rebs + 2 stls + 1 ast (6/9 2p, 0/2 3p, 3/3 ft), M.Cusin 12 pts + 6 rebs + 2 stls (6/10 2p), D.Hackett 11 pts + 4 rebs + 6 stls + 1 ast (4/5 2p, 0/2 3p, 3/3 ft) ; M.Markoishvili 11 pts + 4 rebs + 4 stls (5/7 2p, 0/2 3p, 1/1 ft), G.Basile 11 pts + 2 rebs + 1 blk + 2 stls (1/2 2p, 3/7 3p), D.Perkins 10 pts + 4 rebs + 6 stls + 2 asts (2/5 2p, 0/4 3p, 6/7 ft), N.Mazzarino 10 pts (1/2 2p, 2/5 3p, 2/2 ft)

    The series is tied at 2-2.

    As expected, once again Pesaro showed its strength at home and won comfortably, extending the series to game 5. Not much to say about the game, which was dominated by Pesaro that stayed for most of the time ahead by around 20 pts and even more. Cantý attempted to come back in the 4th quarter but they never really scared the hosts. Hickman was the top scorer and the mvp of the game, but Pesaro had much from its Italians too (Cusin, Hackett, Cavaliero combined for 32 pts, not bad). Cantý has homecourt advantage for decisive game 5 and remains favorite, but the two consecutive losses in Pesaro were quite bad and the team confirmed the poor conditions of some players (Perkins never really convinced since his arrival and Micov is playing really bad since his return from the injury he suffered some weeks ago. Shermadini should come back for game 5 but it's unlikely to expect a big impact from him). Pesaro already won in Cantý in the regular season, still I think they need Jumaine Jones to be aggressive and offensively effective like in game 3 as I don't think they can always pretend 30 or more points from their Italian players...We'll see.

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    QUARTERFINALS
    GAME 5

    Cantý-Pesaro 69-78 - M.Markoishvili 15 pts + 5 rebs + 1 stl (7/11 2p, 0/2 3p, 1/2 ft), M.Leunen 14 pts + 11 rebs + 3 stls + asts (4/10 2p, 2/3 3p), G.Basile 11 pts + 1 reb + 3 asts (0/1 2p, 2/3 3p, 5/6 ft), N.Mazzarino 11 pts + 1 reb + 1 ast (2/4 2p, 2/6 3p, 1/2 ft) ; J.White 21 pts + 10 rebs + 1 blk + 1 stl + 4 asts (8/12 2p, 1/3 3p, 2/3 ft), J.Jones 17 pts + 7 rebs + 1 blk + 2 stls + 1 ast (1/3 2p, 5/9 3p), R.Hickman 15 pts + 3 rebs + 1 blk + 5 asts (1/2 2p, 4/8 3p, 1/2 ft), T.Lydeka 10 pts + 7 rebs (4/5 2p, 2/2 ft)

    In the end, it happened again. It's only the 2nd time in this league that a team wins a playoffs series and advances to the next round after trailing 0-2. The only other team that managed to do that is Benetton Treviso which eliminated Reggio Calabria in 2002-2003 season after losing the first two games. But then at least Benetton had the homecourt advantage in game 5, in this case Pesaro had to win in Cantý, where the hosts had lost only twice this season (vs Venezia and hey...Pesaro). The game has been very tight and balanced for almost three quarters, but it was clear that Pesaro was in better shape and fully confident, while most Cantý players were fatigued or completely out of the game (Perkins once again awful). Pesaro finally managed to put together the decisive run between the end of the 3rd and the start of the 4th quarter, mostly thanks to Lydeka and to three consecutive three-pointers (White, Cavaliero, Jones) that basically turned the lights out on this series. Cantý just couldn't do more without two key players like Micov and Shermadini, their rotations were too short and Pesaro had the momentum. Great game and more generally great series by James White, but also Jumaine Jones and Ricky Hickman (wonder if some EL club will keep an eye on this guy, I really like him) did their job, Pesaro is back to the semifinals 8 years later.

    What happens now? Cantý had a weird season, they did quite well in Euroleague, they made it to the top16 and went very close to advance to the quarterfinals, but domestically they underachieved as they aimed at a trophy but in the end not only they won nothing but this way they're out of next season's Euroleague. If I am not wrong Sassari should be qualified for EL preliminary rounds unless Pesaro advances to the finals.


    SEMIFINALS

    (1) Siena - (4) Sassari
    (2) Milano - (6) Pesaro

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    Seemed like Cantý's rotation was too short to compete over such a long season and especially when they have several players in their mid 30s. The injuries were bad but do you think they should have used the guys at the end of the bench (Diviach, Bolzonella etc) a bit more, at least to give the first 7 or so players a rest? I'm sure most Italian teams used a similar rotation, but without the volume of games Cantý faced or their expectations. It does seem though that the foreigner rules create a situation where some Italian players are overvalued (playing on bigger teams and for more money than a foreigner of similar talent) while leaving other Italians languishing on the end of a bench to fulfil a quota.

    Are Cantý now in the Eurocup group stages or do they have to pre-qualify?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jazz View Post
    Seemed like Cantý's rotation was too short to compete over such a long season and especially when they have several players in their mid 30s. The injuries were bad but do you think they should have used the guys at the end of the bench (Diviach, Bolzonella etc) a bit more, at least to give the first 7 or so players a rest? I'm sure most Italian teams used a similar rotation, but without the volume of games Cantý faced or their expectations. It does seem though that the foreigner rules create a situation where some Italian players are overvalued (playing on bigger teams and for more money than a foreigner of similar talent) while leaving other Italians languishing on the end of a bench to fulfil a quota.

    Are Cantý now in the Eurocup group stages or do they have to pre-qualify?
    Diviach and Bolzonella are no more than benchwarmers, I'm not sure they could have had any bit of an impact in LegaDue. I'm pretty sure that Cantý would have won this series if they had no injuries or if they missed other players, but Micov and Shermadini are their two top guys and they just couldn't replace them.

    BTW What you say is true, current rules are meant to create playing opportunities for Italians and obviously in some cases this leads some Italian players to be signed by good teams and earn a lot more than they would deserve. Clearly, if such rules were not imposed, teams would have signed more foreign players and probably would have saved a good amount of money too.

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    Despite being badly swept by Siena, Sassari plans to be competitive for next season as they officially confirmed both Diener cousins.

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