Euroleague Tips with Previews – Round 19 – Tuesday

Spanoulis Olympiacos

Euroleague Basketball Tips

Euro League basketball predictions appear under each mini game preview.

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CSKA Moscow – Real Madrid

The two most successful clubs in European history take each other’s measure at mid-season as CSKA Moscow (12-6) hosts streaking Real Madrid (15-3) to light the spark of a double-round week that could have long-term repercussions for all teams. CSKA has fought off injuries to win six of eight games and tie for fourth place, while Real has matched its longest winning streak this century, 13 games, which is also the longest under the EuroLeague’s new format since 2016.

CSKA is unlikely to ride only a great game by James to victory over such a deep team as Madrid. But neither will the hosts leave anything to chance. Having Darrun Hilliard on the wing, Nikita Kurbanov in transition, and Johannes Voigtmann in the corners round out its offense will give CSKA a lot more chances. And the hosts, ranked first in overall rebounding this season, need to imposed that advantage on the boards, as well. If they do all that, CSKA will be hard to beat, even for Real.

Real’s streak will face its ultimate test against a team on whose court it has not won since 2008. Its top scorer, Anthony Randolph, won’t make the trip due to injury, so the visitors can expect to have to win with defense. Around the basket, that means the league’s top shot-blocker, Walter Tavares, has to be on his game. And on the perimeter, it’ll be a matter of making a driver out of James, which proved successful in their first game. Real must expect ups and downs offensively that will require compensation on the defensive end.

basketball prediction Tip: Over 166.5 at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 14/01/2020, 08:55 CET, subject to change)

Khimki – Valencia

Two teams tied for ninth place in the standings will face each other for the chance to stay there or rise when Khimki Moscow Region (8-10) hosts Valencia Basket (8-10) in Round 19 on Tuesday. Both teams lost their last games and will look to be back on the winning track as soon as possible, especially against a foe that could be a direct rival for a playoff spot in the long run.

Having dropped four of its last five games, the last three in a row, Khimki needs to get to the W side as fast as possible. The hosts have some of the best offensive weapons and percentages in the league, but Valencia seems to take the upper hand on the defensive side. The numbers between both teams are rather close, so the hosts will have to step it up on defense, in which case their options to keep the win in Moscow will raise dramatically.

Valencia comes from a difficult home loss to Olympiacos, but the team is on the right path, and will look not to divert from it too much in Moscow. Valencia dominates the rebounds and a couple other defensive statistics, while it’s not too far away from Khimki on the others. If it becomes a close game like the first time this season however, the guests will have to pay attention at their lower percentage from the stripe. Those small details can make a big difference in the end.

Valencia will be missing Mike Tobey and Bojan Dubljevic at center in the game against Khimki.

basketball prediction Tip: Under 176.5 at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 14/01/2020, 08:55 CET, subject to change)

Anadolu Efes – Milano

High-flying co-leader Efes (15-3) takes on sixth-place Milan (10-8) in a game between teams that have found ways to win at the start of the new year. Efes comes off a big-ticket road win over FC Barcelona and has prevailed in 11 of its last 12 games. Milan beat visiting Panathinaikos OPAP Athens for its third victory in four games since shaking off a five-game losing streak.

The hosts have no trouble piling up the points as the EuroLeague’s third-ranked offense (86.6 ppg.), which makes their defense a bigger focus. Despite solid three-point accuracy (39.5%) Milan likes to go inside, which is where Efes is short-handed due to defensive ace Bryant Dunston being injured. These teams are very evenly matched in rebounds, and controlling them could be enough for Efes to use its home-court advantage for yet another victory. Pulling Milan’s big men to the perimeter will open up lanes for Larkin and friends to do their damage.

The visitors excel at limiting assists and three-pointers to their opponents, on the road as much as at home. Both of those are imperatives to stop Efes in Istanbul, but Milan will still be required to play solid one-on-one defense, intimidate around the rim and rebound, rebound, rebound. Milan would seem to prefer a slower pace, but considering how fluently Efes fills the basket it would also behoove the visitors to take advantage of transition scoring opportunities and not depend solely on game tempo and superior shooting accuracy, should it come, to stay close enough for an upset bid.

basketball prediction Tip: 1 (-8.0) at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 14/01/2020, 08:55 CET, subject to change)

Fenerbahce – Villeurbanne

Surging old stanby Fenerbahce (7-11) looks to step over newcomer ASVEL (8-10) in the standings when they face off on Tuesday. Fenerbahce is coming off two road wins amid signs that its old dominance has returned. ASVEL has lost two in a row at home, making it seven defeats in 10 games, and counts this as the first of a daunting three-game road trip to stay within shouting distance of the playoff spots.

Nailing 16 three-pointers in consecutive games went a long way to making Fenerbahce’s resurgence happen over the last two weeks. Leo Westermann and De Colo combined for 17 of those 32 triples, calling to mind that Fenerbahce built its dominance over five years on the second-best three-point shooting (both total made and percentage) in the EuroLeague. Anything close to 16 three-pointers at home will make ASVEL’s task extremely difficult. What solid outside shooting has done lately is let Fenerbahce’s injury-thinned frontcourt concentrate on its job around the rim, where it rebounded to a draw over the last two weeks, avoiding what has been one of the team’s big problems this season.

Neither team is great at overall rebounding, but ASVEL does a lot better on the offensive glass, where Fenerbahce is vulnerable. Adreian Payne has joined Tonye Jekiri, who ranks second with 3.0 offensive boards per game, in giving opponents lots to think about inside. They will need to combine forces in Istanbul so that their teammates in the backcourt may focus a whole lot of their attention on stopping Fenerbahce’s experienced perimeter players at one end and on eluding the hosts’ strong defense on first and second passes at the other. If the guards are successful, Jekiri and Payne may find themselves getting plenty of scoring chances for ASVEL, too.

basketball prediction Tip: 2 (+11.5) at 1.90 with bet365
(Price correct at 14/01/2020, 08:55 CET, subject to change)

Olympiacos – ALBA Berlin

Two teams facing similarly difficult moments will square off on Tuesday as Olympiacos Piraeus (7-11) hosts ALBA Berlin (5-13) for Round 19. Olympiacos snapped a losing streak against Valencia and will have Georgios Bartzokas returning to its bench to try to stay on the right path. ALBA has lost six of the last seven games and will look to steal a win in Piraeus to try to rise up again.

The hosts welcome Bartzokas back to the bench with the goal of trying to build a streak off of their last win against Valencia. ALBA is the more offensive team, and the Reds’ defense will have to work hard to try and limit the league-best 19.8 assists per game of the guests. If Olympiacos has its main players healthy and looks for options to maintain or even increase its 55% efficiency on two-point shots, it will have solid chances to add another win.

Injuries have been plaguing ALBA these last months and the results reflect that. Peyton Siva returned for ALBA last week, and as the team’s long-time floor director, his presence helps everyone on the team. ALBA’s offensive style can beat anyone, but the team must not forget defense and try to control the rebounds as Olympiacos is the fifth-best team in the league in that regard. The game around the basket, where Olympiacos is tough, must be a defensive priority of the visitors, who shoot better than the Reds in other places on the court.

basketball prediction Tip: 1 (-7.5) at 1.86 with bet365
(Price correct at 14/01/2020, 08:55 CET, subject to change)

Maccabi – Barcelona

Two teams with top-five records and already with thoughts of home-court advantage for the playoffs meet in Tel Aviv when Maccabi FOX hosts FC Barcelona. Maccabi comes off a road win at ALBA Berlin to begin a stretch that will see it plat four of its next five games at home. The Israeli champs are also regaining strength in the rotation with the return from injury of Nate Wolters, while newcomers Jalen Reynolds and Aaron Jackson gain form. Barcelona, which begins a tough week that will see it play Fenerbahce Beko in Istanbul on Thursday, will look to stop a two-game slide.

Nikola Mirotic has dominated for Barcelona this season, but when he has struggled, Barcelona has had trouble winning. The star forward has failed to record a performance index rating of 20 in any of his team’s five defeats; he’s averaged 16.4 points on 14 of 29 two-pointers (48.3%) and 12-of-34 shooting on threes (35.3%) plus 5.0 rebounds in losses, which are still strong numbers, but lower and less efficient than his norm. Maccabi will use a mix of the physical Quincy Acy, the young Deni Avdija and the versatile Angelo Caloiaro to guard Mirotic knowing that slowing him down would be a boon to the home team.

Barcelona had 20 assists and just 10 turnovers in its win against Maccabi. That was much better (2.00) than its regular assist-to-turnover ratio: 1.39. Preventing Maccabi from dominating the boards will be critical for Coach Svetislav Pesic’s team, as well as running its offense through Mirotic, Brandon Davies and Ante Tomic. The more points in the paint, the better looks Barcelona will find for sharpshooters Kyle Kuric, Alex Abrines and Cory Higgins.

basketball prediction Tip: Winning Margin 3-way: Any other result (1-5 points difference) at 2.50 with bet365
(Price correct at 14/01/2020, 08:55 CET, subject to change)

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