Euroleague Tips with Previews – Round 12 – 05/12/2019

Euroleague predictions

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CSKA Moscow – Zalgiris

One of the chief rivalries from Soviet basketball lives on when CSKA hosts Zalgiris. CSKA comes off a tough three-game road stretch in which it lost the first two games, but got a boost of confidence with a resounding 67-96 thumping of FC Barcelona. After making two straight playoff appearances, Zalgiris has slumped this season; the Lithuanian champs have dropped five straight games and are 1-3 on the road.

The key number for CSKA this season is 80. CSKA is 6-1 when it has scored at least 80 points. It is 6-1 when its opponents have been held below 80 points. Based on the teams’ averages – CSKA is fifth in the league with 83.9 points per game and Zalgiris 16th with 73.6, the 80-point threshold could be the key to victory again this week.

Zalgiris has struggled on offense this season and ranks near the bottom in scoring (16th, 73.6 ppg.) and assists (16th 14.6 apg.) and is last in both three-pointers made (75) and three-point accuracy (31.4%). There is no shortage of top-notch shooters on the team, from Lukas Lekavicius and Arturas Milaknis in the backcourt to center Jock Landale. Getting the team’s once-feared three-point attack back on track could turn things around for Zalgiris.

basketball prediction Tip: 1 (-9.5) at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 05/11/2019, 09:40 CET, could have changed)

Maccabi – Bayern

The champions of Israel and Germany will clash in this showdown in Tel Aviv. While Maccabi will look to remain undefeated at home, Bayern seeks its maiden road victory this season. Both teams have been shorthanded in recent weeks with forward Omri Casspi of Maccabi and Nihad Dedovic of Bayern each missing multiple games.

Great defense has led to great defense for Maccabi this season; the team leads the league in rebounds (37.6 rpg.) and steals (8.3 spg.), which has led to it ranking second in scoring (86.9 ppg.) and atop the table in two-point shooting (58.2%). Bayern is second-to-last in offensive rebounding (8.4), so if Maccabi can control the glass and get its points on the fastbreak and in transition, it will be in good shape for a sixth straight home win.

Bayern is tied for the second-fewest three-pointers in the league (77), but is fifth in three-point accuracy (39.1%). Facing a stingy Maccabi defense that leads the league in two-point accuracy, allowing opponents a mere 44.2%, Bayern would be wise to fire up more shots from behind the arc to open things up and challenge the Maccabi big men to keep pace. Petteri Koponen, Paul Zipser and Maodo Lo could take the lead in that charge.

basketball prediction Tip: Over 164.5 at 2.00 with bet365
(Price correct at 05/11/2019, 09:40 CET, could have changed)

Milano – Crvena Zvezda

Two teams in different recent forms meet in the fashion capital when Milan hosts Crvena Zvezda. Milan has lost back-to-back games and three of its last four, including its first home loss of the season to Anadolu Efes Istanbul in Round 10. Zvezda has won its last two games, including its first road win at Zalgiris Kaunas in Round 10.

Milan has been able to break games open at times with its league-leading 42.9% three-point shooting, which also helps cover for its poor two-point shooting (17th, 46.8%). However, it is noteworthy that while Milan has made 48.1% of its threes in its seven wins, the team is just 34.3% from behind the arc in losses. This week Milan faces a Zvezda team, which thanks to the perimeter defense of Branko Lazic, Lorenzo Brown and Charles Jenkins, has held opponents to 32.3% shooting from downtown. A good shooting night from three-point land seems pivotal for Milan.

When Zvezda plays its best defense, it has a chance in every game. However, when it has allowed at least 80 points in a game this season, it is 0-4. Zvezda must improve its abysmal shooting (46.7% 2FG, 32.1% 3FG) and cut down on its 13.9 turnovers, which are third-most in the league. That will allow it to keep pace with opponents when its defense is less than elite. However, Zvezda must also continue to play tough defense to have a good chance at a second straight road win.

basketball prediction Tip: 2 (+8.5) at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 05/11/2019, 09:40 CET, could have changed)

Real Madrid – Valencia

It will be an all-Spanish affair on Thursday night when Real Madrid welcomes Valencia Basket to the Spanish capital. Real is one of the hottest teams in the league right now riding a six-game winning streak. The last win arrived at Zenit St Peterburg, 71-86. On the other hand, Valencia saw its winning streak snapped last week in Belgrade with a 76-73 loss on the buzzer against Crvena Zvezda.

Coach Pablo Laso seems to have found the right key to press at this moment. The team is on a roll despite injury problems and playing at home against a well-known opponent could be a blessing and a curse. Real has a net 10-point difference with the visitors counting offense and defense, and the hosts outperform Valencia on almost every other aspect of the game on paper. If Los Blancos slow Jordan Loyd and Dubljevic down, they will be closer to their seventh straight win.

Sergio Llull, Salah Mejri and Felipe Reyes will miss the game for sure. Rudy Fernandez did not practice all week with the flu. Jeffery Taylor will play.

It took a while, but Valencia seems to finally be rolling in the EuroLeague. Despite its last loss, the visitors are in good form and will try to stay that way in Madrid. However, Coach Jaume Ponsarnau is facing a tough challenge against arguably the hottest team in the league. Defense to deny open shots will be key since Real has solid percentages from all ranges. The hosts’ 99.8 average PIR (third-best in the league) indicates that they do many things well, so it will be an important task for Valencia in Madrid.

basketball prediction Tip: Winning Margin 3-way: Any other result (any team 1-5 points win) at 3.40 with bet365
(Price correct at 05/11/2019, 09:40 CET, could have changed)

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