Defeat in the dying seconds in Tel Aviv

MATCH REPORT. 24/03/2022. Edu Bueno

Real Madrid had the final shot to clinch the win in an evenly balanced contest away at Maccabi. 

Real Madrid came away empty handed from their visit to Maccabi in round 32 of the EuroLeague. The clash was decided in the dying seconds of play, as was the case 48 hours previously in Istanbul. The Whites went into the final five minutes with a nine-point lead, but the hosts fought back to turn around a game, in which Yabusele had the final shot to clinch the win. Poirier (PIR of 20) was the team’s standout performer. With just two games remaining in the Regular Season, Pablo Laso’s men can still finish second ahead of the playoffs.
The clash was played at high intensity from the tip-off and there was not much between the two teams in a fiercely contested first quarter. Madrid were clinical in offence, particularly from the three-point line led by Yabusele in the first quarter. The power forward posted 14 points hitting four out of five three-pointers, two steals, with a PIR of 13 points. He prevailed in the individual battle against Wilbekin's seven and helped his team win the opening quarter by a narrow 20-21 scoreline.

Video.75-74: Defeat in the dying seconds in Tel Aviv

On the attack
The stunning offensive play from both teams carried on into the second quarter at a furious pace of play and with a succession of scoring runs from different players on each side, which prevented either team from taking the pulling clear. Despite their losses, the Whites withstood the local onslaught spearheaded by Evans and Nunnally and began to toughen up near the hoop thanks to the inside presence of Williams-Goss and Hanga and the dominance of Poirier and Tavares on the offensive rebound to head into the half-time break three up at 41-44.
Another unexpected twist
The pattern of the game was not to change until midway through the third quarter with the introduction of Heurtel, whose 3 three-pointers and 11 points in just 4 minutes, gave Madrid a lift to start a 0-9 run and go into the final 5 minutes with a 9-point lead, courtesy of some great work from Poirier as well. But Maccabi were not going to capitulate, and the final period was a carbon copy of the game in Istanbul. The home side turned the clash around and two free throws by Wilbekin brought the score to 75-74. Yabusele missed the crucial shot in the last play as Madrid came away empty handed from Israel. The madridistas must now turn their attention to Sunday's matchup against Urbas Fuenlabrada in the league (12:30 pm CET).