Friday, December 8, 2023

Melvin Ejim: the change that transformed everything in Girona

He Unicaja This Saturday he turned a victory into a true feat. After a very bad first half in which Girona managed to make the best version of the Malaga team disappear, the second half reflected that this team is not just any team and, above all, that does not depend specifically on anyone to add eight consecutive victories.

Ibon Navarro had tried absolutely everything during the first half in Fontajau. Such was the point that he even experimented with Alberto Díaz and Perry together on the track. He opted for more centimeters with Djedovic-Barreiro, for physicality with Taylor-Barreiro, he combined all the interiors… In fact, he tried everything and with everyone. However, He insisted again with a key that had not worked in the first half until he managed to turn the game around with a victory.

Ejim was fundamental on both sides of the court. ACBPhoto

Melvin Ejim He barely played 2.30 minutes until halftime, all of them in the first quarter. In fact, he didn’t contribute to the team… until the second half came around. As if several days had passed and it was a totally different game, the Canadian became the change that transformed everything. Their points lit the way for the comeback and sealed the final victory.

Third quarter

The power forward started after the break. Without attending to the first part, it was a logical entry for provide defensive consistency because painting had been a true avenue for Girona. And that’s where the Canadian’s masterclass began. His first contribution was a block against Yves Pons and he immediately scored after a pass from Alberto, who put the score at 57-42. The first points of the comeback to reduce that disadvantage to -17.

From there, he began to generate second chances very valuable for the team. 4 points and 3 rebounds was the card with which he went to the bench at minute 27.12 (60-49). Individually, it may seem like just another one. However, he was able to infect the rest of his teammates to begin to believe in the real possibility of victory.

The quintet Alberto, Kalinoski, Taylor, Ejim and Kravish began the comeback. ACBPhoto

Last room

With 7 minutes left he returned to the court for Osetkowski. He left it with -11 and found himself a more than hopeful -5 (67-62) after the team was already able to tie the game. If it had already had an important impact before, what happened in the last quarter was barbaric on both sides of the track with the following statistical line: defensive rebound, steal, 2-point basket (69-68), defensive rebound, offensive rebound, missed shot and two more points to make it 72-74.

However, the best still remained: the final sentence. Melvin Ejim, who is not known for being an excellent scorer, was the one who assumed the responsibility of winning the game. Unicaja’s last three points were named after him, from the free throw line. It was his 78-81, he took the very important rebound after Iroegbu’s missed triplereceived a foul and won it with one more free throw.

Ibon Navarro said it: “If you always compete, you have a chance of winning the game like today – Saturday -.” AND Ejim is the perfect demonstration of competitiveness until the last second. The change that transformed everything with 11 points and 8 rebounds.


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