Fenerbahçe to take on Anadolu Efes for Turkish basketball title
ISTANBULIstanbul basketball giant and Euro League final runner-up Fenerbahçe have booked tickets for the Turkish Spor Toto Basketball League playoff finals, eliminating archrival Galatasaray Odeabank in the semi-final series late on May 31.
Fenerbahçe won the fourth match of the series against Galatasaray Odeabank 82-75, clinching the series 3-1 and advancing to the finals.
The fourth match of the series was played at Galatasaray Odeabank’s home court without spectators, after the Turkish Basketball Federation (TBF) Disciplinary Committee ordered Galatasaray Odeabank to play two home matches behind closed doors due to fans’ violent behavior in the previous game.
Fans had thrown debris onto the court at the end of the third quarter of the last game, delaying the start of the fourth quarter. Galatasaray was up 53-50 at the time.
An unidentified stain was photographed on the face of Fenerbahçe head coach Zeljko Obradovic, with Fenerbahçe later stating on its website that it was spit from a Galatasaray fan.
Obradovic and Galatasaray head coach Ergin Ataman also engaged in a small argument at the end of the final game in the series.
The match’s top scorer was Fenerbahçe point guard Bobby Dixon, also known as Ali Muhammed. The U.S.-born Turkish player scored 18 points, while his teammate Melih Mahmutoğlu poured in 16 points.
Galatasaray Odeabank guards Errick McCollum and Sinan Güler and center Stephane Lasme scored 15 points each, but their efforts were not enough to tie the series.
Fenerbahçe will now play against the other Istanbul basketball heavyweight, Anadolu Efes, in the finals, which start at Istanbul’s Abdi İpekçi Arena on June 3.
The at-least-four-game series will move on to Fenerbahçe’s home Ülker Arena after a second game at Abdi İpekçi.