Euroleague Tips with Previews – Round 28 – Friday

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Khimki – ALBA Berlin

Khimki Moscow Region will look to keep its momentum going and put together back-to-back wins for the first time this season when it hosts ALBA Berlin on Friday. Khimki defeated Real Madrid on Tuesday to snap a 17-game losing streak and improve to 3-23. ALBA faltered in the fourth quarter in losing at Zenit St Petersburg on Tuesday. It was the German champs’ third straight loss on the road. ALBA is 4-9 in road games this season.

It all starts with defense for Khimki. With Alexey Shved, Errick McCollum and Jordan Mickey, all know that Khimki can score in bunches. However, it has also allowed the most points in the league (90.5 ppg.) by far; ALBA is second on that list with 82.7. In Khimki’s three wins, the opponents have averaged only 79.0 points. Keeping ALBA below 80 may be the key for the hosts.

  • Devin Booker has missed the last six games.
  • Stefan Jovic has not played in the last five games.
  • Janis Timma did not play in the last two games.
  • Khimki parted ways with Dairis Bertans.

For a team with many great three-point shooters, ALBA’s 35.8% accuracy for the season is surprisingly low. A healthy Marcus Eriksson and Niels Giffey should help raise that number. Khimki has allowed its opponents to make a league-best 43.3% on threes and if ALBA can take advantage and light up the scoreboard from downtown, it would be in a better spot to challenge for a road win in Moscow.

  • Jayson Granger is out after having hand surgery.
  • Louis Olinde is expected to miss several weeks after injuring his hand ahead of Round 25.

basketball prediction Tip: Over 170.5 at 1.90 with bet365
( Euroleague predictions with correct price at 05/03/2021, 09:00 CET. Odds subject to change )

Zalgiris – Milano

Two teams coming off opposite experiences earlier this week will square off Friday as Zalgiris Kaunas (15-12) welcomes AX Armani Exchange Milan (17-10) for Round 28. After a losing skid, Zalgiris was back to winning on Tuesday against ASVEL, 85-75. On the other hand, Milan saw its incipient winning streak snapped at home against Fenerbahce, 92-100. Milan plays to stay among the top four teams in the league, while Zalgiris sits at ninth place and could get into playoffs position with a win.

Facing a Milan offense that ranks third in scoring (82.0 ppg.), Zalgiris will have to power up its defense, especially on the perimeter, where the visitors own the league’s best three-point proficiency (42.5%). Zalgiris is also the worst team in blocks per game (1.1), so defense in the paint against Milan’s big men will also be paramount. Zalgiris boasts solid stats across a wide range of categories, all of which might be needed to hold serve at home against a dangerous visitor.

Milan suffered a tough loss at home, but on paper has been a bit more consistent than Zalgiris. Since the hosts lead the league from the free-throw line (85.5%), the fewer trips they take to that spot, the better for Milan. However, the PIR averages for both teams stay very close to each other (87.8 to 89.9) so it seems that it will all come down to details in this battle with high stakes.

  • Zach LeDay has missed the last four games with an injury.
  • Malcolm Delaney did not play in Round 27.

basketball prediction Tip: Under 154.5 at 1.90 with bet365
( Euroleague predictions with correct price at 05/03/2021, 09:00 CET. Odds subject to change )

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Olympiacos – Crvena Zvezda

One team will end an eight-game losing streak on Friday as Olympiacos Piraeus (11-16) hosts Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade (7-20) for Round 28. The Reds are currently on a bad streak that started in Round 20 and continued earlier this week with a tough, 91-66 defeat at Baskonia. Already-eliminated Zvezda is in the same situation. They have not won since Round 19 and fell earlier this week at home against Bayern by a close 76-78. This game will be the reprieve that one of these teams need.

If Olympiacos wants to get back in the playoffs race, it needs to win ASAP, as there will not be many more chances to do so on its home floor. Also, Zvezda has the worst scoring (73.5 ppg.) and assists (14.1 apg.) in the league, so solid defense should let the Reds run a bit on offense to try to get easier buckets. The hosts will have to overcome some key absences, and if the game gets as close as their previous one, details could be key, including their 77.4% from the stripe, seventh worst in the league, against Zvezda’s fourth-best 82.3%.

  • Kostas Papanikolaou has missed Olympiacos’s last 12 games.
  • Georgios Printezis did not play in Round 27.
  • Hassan Martin is sidelined with a knee injury.

The guests are in a bad spot, no question. With just seven more possible wins, the best they could so this season is a 14-20, which means they are mathematically out of the playoffs. However, this game could be a good chance for Zvezda to get back on the winning track and try to get some team chemistry back after all the COVID issues it has suffered the last weeks. Olympiacos will be playing for its survival in this game, but with nothing to lose, Zvezda could regroup and play without fear to try to play spoiler and boost morale for the rest of the season.

  • Landry Nnoko, Duop Reath and Quino Colom all missed the last four games because of COVID-19.

basketball prediction Tip: Over 152.5 at 1.90 with bet365
( Euroleague predictions with correct price at 05/03/2021, 09:00 CET. Odds subject to change )

Villeurbanne – Fenerbahce

LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne (12-15) comes off a loss after six consecutive victories and hopes to bounce back at home. Norris Cole (13.8 ppg.), David Lighty (11.7 ppg.) and Moustapha Fall (9.4 ppg., 5.6 rpg.) have been its main pillars throughout the season. Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul (16-11), winner of 11 out of 12 games, wants to keep rising toward the playoffs. Its led by Jan Vesely (13.2 ppg., 5.5 rpg.), Nando De Colo (15.1 ppg., 4.1 apg.) and Marko Guduric (11.8 ppg., 3.2 apg.).

ASVEL made 46.9% of its three-point shots (54-of-115) during its six-game winning streak. It only hit 8-of-25 attempts from downtown (32%) in its Round 27 loss against Zalgiris Kaunas. That is, more three-point shots with a worse percentage. It is important for ASVEL to find balance on offense, feeding Fall and Guerschon Yabusele for one-on-one chances to open the floor for the team’s many shooters, especially William Howard (55.1% 3FG). On defense, preventing De Colo from running the show should be critical, too.

  • Derrick Walton has been sidelined for several weeks with a hip injury.
  • Antoine Diot did not play in the last two games.

Fenerbahce has been improving its shooting percentages throughout the season, and it now ranks third from downtown (40.6% 3FG) and from the free throw line (83.8%), and second inside the arc (57.0% 2FG). Being able to keep those solid shooting percentages is critical against a physical team like ASVEL. Fenerbahce had 22 assists and just 10 turnovers against AX Armani Exchange Milan in Round 27. Jan Vesely had 8 of those assists, and running its offense through its star center should be a plus again for the Turkish powerhouse.

  • Edgaras Ulanovas missed Round 27 game after being the only Fenerbahce player to start in each of the first 26.

basketball prediction Tip: Winning Margin 3-way Any Other (1-5 points) at 2.75 with bet365
( Euroleague predictions with correct price at 05/03/2021, 09:00 CET. Odds subject to change )

Barcelona – Baskonia

C Barcelona (19-8) leads the standings and comes off a brilliant road win against Panathinaikos OPAP Athens. Nikola Mirotic (16.6 ppg., 6.0 rpg.), Cory Higgins (12.9 ppg.) and Brandon Davies (12.1 ppg.) are leading the team so far this season. TD Systems Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz (14-13) is on a five-game winning streak, and each of its last four victories was by at least 20 points. Alec Peters (12.0 ppg.) is Baskonia’s top scorer, followed by Rokas Giedraitis (11.8 ppg.) and Achille Polonara (11.3 ppg.).

Barcelona is shooting the ball very well this season (55.8% 2FG, 40.6% 3FG) but leads the 2020-21 EuroLeague in turnovers (14.9 per game). Cutting those turnovers would make Barcelona even more competitive. It all starts with defense for head coach Sarunas Jasikevicius, and Barcelona allows opponents to shoot with a league-low 48.1% inside the arc and just 34.4% from downtown, while ranking second in defensive rebounds (24.1 drpg.). On defense, preventing Luca Vildoza and Pierria Henry from dominating the game tempo should be Barcelona’s main priority.

Baskonia has limited all opponents to less than 70 points in its current five-game winning streak. Those opponents combined had 85-for-187 two-point shooting (45.5%), which speaks volumes about Baskonia’s paint protection. At the same time, Baskonia has been really effective inside the arc, hitting 114 of 191 two-pointers (59.7%). If Baskonia sticks to those percentages at both ends and manages to prevent Abrines, Higgins and Kuric from dynamiting the game from the three-point line, it should have good chances to win.

basketball prediction Tip: 2 (+8.5) at 1.90 with bet365
( Euroleague predictions with correct price at 05/03/2021, 09:00 CET. Odds subject to change )

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