Efes cruises to Turkish Airlines Euroleague playoffs with win over Fenerbahçe
Anadolu Efes defeated Fenerbahçe 80-77 March 23 at Istanbul’s Abdi İpekçi Arena in a Turkish Airlines Euroleague game to clinch a berth in the playoffs.
The win gave Anadolu Efes its 16th victory, while Fenerbahçe, which had already advanced to the playoffs, fell to 17 wins and 11 losses.
Jayson Granger scored 13 points and made 5 assists for the home side Efes, while Bryant Dunston and Derrick Brown each chipped in 10 points.
Bogdan Bogdanovic came off the bench to score 16 points for Fenerbahçe, but the team was unable to complete ar comeback, though it erased a 17-point deficit.
“First of all it is a great success for us to reach the playoffs,” said Anadolu Efes coach Velimir Perosovic after the game.
“I think for every team it is tough to classify for the playoffs because when you see teams like Barcelona, Milan or Maccabi out, it is a great success. Congratulation to my players, because they deserved this,” he added.
Fenerbahçe coach Zeljko Obradovic also congratulated Anadolu Efes. “I want to congratulate Efes for an important victory,” said the legendary coach, whose team is aiming to be in the Final Four which will be played at Fenerbahçe’s home Ülker Arena.
“We tried all game to find the rhythm to come back in the game. Finally we found it, but in the last two offenses we played and handled it very badly,” he added.
The game was “up and down,” according to Efes guard Brandon Paul. “We kept our composure and we had a lot of guys step up for us tonight and make big-time plays,“ he said.