Baskonia vs Barcelona
Spanish ACB playoffs, Semifinal, Game 1 in the series best of 5
I liked very much Barcelona in this second part of the season, better to say in final third. They brought me money in that period. I started consider betting them right away when coach Pesic has arrived early in February. I mentioned many times how big respect that guy deserve. He is without doubt one of best you can find in European basketball. Still, today I am on the other side.
At one moment pretty desperate season for Barcelona, Pesic immediately turned around. With him on the bench, Barsa right away won the trophy on Final 8 tournament of the Cup competition. There Barcelona was better of all best Spanish sides. In Euroleague Barcelona ended season with embarrassing 11-19 but in final 8 games with Pesic as coach, Barcelona went decent 4-4 in best European competition and all that with loud and clear statement how Euroleague was not their priority any more cause when Pesic arrived Barsa already was without chance to qualify for the playoffs. Their focus was on the domestic competitions and beside won Cup, Barcelona was excellent in ACB league and closed the regular season with 12-3 run since Pesic arrived. So no doubt the Serbian coach raised the level.
But enough good words about Barcelona. Today I think the guests will have difficult task on this tough visit where they lost both road games in this sesson. In ACB that was really heavy loss for Barcelona. As a matter fact exactly mentioned defeat here was the last game for previous coach cause he was fired after Baskonia demolished them here with 96:72. In Euroleague, Baskonia also was better here when hosted Barcelona, 85:82 seems like tied game but in fact it was big advantage at halftime as well at the end of third quarter.
As for games when Barcelona was the host, in ACB Barsa won although it was double digits lead for Baskonia at the end of third quarter. In Euroleaague mutual meeting that Barcelona hosted, Baskonia won and it was pretty comfortable win, 73:86. This is in the same time the most recent meeting and the only one of the so far 4 where Pesic was Barcelona coach (not counting victory for Barsa in the mentioned Cup game on neutral court).
All in all, it's 3-2 Baskonia overall in the season and 2-0 here at home.
Why I expect Baskonia to win today? Well, similar as mentioned yesterday for Real vs Gran Canaria game, also here Baskonia long ago finished its QF series and had nice 5 days off to prepare for the semis. Barcelona on the other side due to long series with Andorra had only two days. Andorra won that one game against Barcelona thanks to amazing 3-pts shooting, 16/33. It seemed to me Barcelona has plenty problems to defend shots from the downtown. And now Barcelona will face probably best 3-pts team plus it'sva road game. I would need double check about that but if I remember well, Baskonia even in Euroleague was the side with highest 3-pts percentage.
I think Barcelona would need some really outstanding performance to avoid defeat in this Game 1.
The odds for this HT-FT option dropped a little bit whilst I was writing the preview but ok, I think also current 1.74 is not bad.
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Baskonia vs Barcelona prediction
|HT-FT: 1/1||Bet365||1.74||8||86-61 WON (+5.92 units)|