REPORT | 29/11/2018 | Nacho Díaz | PHOTOGRAPHER: Víctor CarreteroCSKA Moscow took the win in a clash which lived up to expectations from an offensive point of view.
- Matchday 10
It was a slow start for Real Madrid, lacking in intensity, as Campazzo quickly realised. The Whites were on the receiving end of a 3-17 run as CSKA proved clinical in offense (seven for Clyburn and six De Colo), particularly on the triple (4 of 5). But Laso called a time-out and spurred the madridistas into life. And how. A 14-3 response brought them back in range. Five from Randolph and nine for the Argentine point guard, who was decisive in every element of the game and crucial in seeing Real Madrid through their rocky start. It was Facu who put the icing on the cake of the comeback with an infeasible triple from deep inside his own half which bounced off the backboard, spun around the hoop and sunk in on the buzzer (20-24).
The Whites react
It was a significant blow to the visitors and the Whites took advantage to string together another 12-0 run at the start of the second quarter. The Ayón-Reyes duo were tremendous in the paint while CSKA saw their points dry up. That was, until they didn't. They began to find their rhythm from the 6.75 once more (4 triples), to go from 32-24 to 37-38 and in front. But it was Madrid who netted the final basket of the half after Campazzo robbed Hackett and Rudy (a wonderful quarter) tipped in a Thompkins three pointer which had gone astray (41-38).
The hosts' main men in the third quarter were Deck (8 points) and Taylor (4), who kept the Whites in it up top during an opening spell which saw both sides exchanging baskets. But the Russians would not lie down and began to punish their opponents from the triple once more: two for De Colo on the buzzer after great efforts in the madridista defense and two for Higgins (who hit ten points). Combined with contributions from Clyburn and Hunter, CSKA flew to a +10 lead (57-67) before Rudy pulled it back to 8 (59-67).
CSKA go with the flow
It was time to come back from behind once more and Carroll was the first to step up (5 consecutive points), but the Russians produced another immediate response, yet again on the triple. Higgins was unopposed in point-scoring terms (24) but the game became scrappy, held back by constant fouls. Six in a row for Reyes took the team to within ten points with 4:20 on the clock (75-84). A Rudy triple and two free-throws by Ayón made dreams of a comeback possible but CSKA managed possession well. A Campazzo 3+1, a Higgins triple and another 3+1 for the Argentine ended with the final score at 88-93.