Real Madrid secured an important win, the club’s eighth in the EuroLeague campaign, against Asvel Villeurbanne in one of the most demanding road trips of the season. The Whites were up against one of the competition’s surprise packages who had only suffered defeat to Maccabi on its own court, but Pablo Laso’s charges produced a very disciplined performance from start to finish to overcome these tricky opponents. The trident comprising Causeur, the team’s top scorer with 25 points and 5/6 on triples in 18 minutes, Tavares (12 points, 10 rebounds and a PIR of 25) and Yabusele (18 and 20) were instrumental as the team racked up a third straight win in the competition.
Real Madrid made a solid start and set up in a different way without an out-an-out playmaker in a bid to counter Asvel’s physical game. In the opening five minutes, the Whites had sunk 20 points to the hosts’ eight, with all of the points coming from Causeur, Yabusele and Tavares, and showcased tremendous efficiency (4/4 on triples and 5/6 on two-pointers) and were dominating massively on rebounds. Our team got off to a sublime start and had it not been for the excellent Okobo (16 points) the Whites’ lead would have been far greater at the end of the first quarter (24-33).
Madrid stand firm
The hosts upped their aggression and the introduction of Osetkowski in the paint gave them energy and points during a period in which Madrid wasn’t as prolific in attack as Asvel brought themselves back to within three points when they made it 34-37 in the 14th minute. However, Laso’s charges managed to keep a cool head and stood firm in the face of the French side’s surge. Llull, Rudy and Vukčević helped the hosts to rediscover their scoring mojo from the 6.75-metre line. A triple apiece, along with some good minutes in defence, paced by Tavares (a PIR of 19 in 19 minutes) took the madridistas into the break with a healthy lead (43-51).
Video.74-87: Valuable win in tough road
The physical demands grew as the contest wore on with Asvel setting very high standards in this department. Far from being a handicap, Real Madrid show that it is up to the challenge and competes very well in such situations. The Whites showed all of their muscle with the starting quintet and reproduced the form from the start of the game to rack three points after three points and closed out the zone. Five points in a row and an alley oop finished off by Tavares led a run of 7-0 for our team to establish the biggest lead of the night at 47-63 at the halfway point of the third stanza. T. J. Parker’s men kept probing but their efforts waned in the face of Madrid’s amazing solidity.
Causeur paces Madrid to victory
With the scoreboard showing 54-62 in the 29th minute, the hosts’ hopes were extinguished. Laso’s men, with Causeur in impressive form, pulled away after tearing up a 0-13 run in the ensuing four minutes to take the difference to +21 (54-75, min. 33). The French forward, who sunk an amazing triple on the buzzer to close out the third quarter, once again showcased his productivity and had now notched 22 points in 17 minutes with some near-perfect scoring percentages. Madrid managed their lead without any issues, although Asvel came back on the attack with a do or die approach. The French side hauled themselves back to within eight points at 70-78 on 37’, but the madridistas again displayed all of their solidity by sinking triples from Rudy and another from Tavares, who quietly went about his business to record another double-double (74-87, min. 40). Madrid recorded a third straight EuroLeague win to keep the clean sweep of wins in November going, with Crvena Zvezda next up in 48 hours’ time at the WiZink Center (Thursday, 8:45pm CET).
ASVEL v REAL MADRID STATISTICS