He Barça passed over the Panathinaikos until he relaxed in the fourth quarter and saw the score go from an overwhelming 75-49 to 80-72 final in a great game by Jabari Parker (17 points, five rebounds and +17) and Oriol Paulí with 12 key points). And in the duel of brothers, Willy Hernangómez was not the protagonist and Juancho showed why he has four points in the last four games.
Was a strange duel due to the accumulation of casualties that both teams presented in the direction of the game. The visitors arrived without their ‘brain’ Kostas Sloukas or the Argentine Luca Vildoza, while the recently signed American Kendrick Nunn could debut the next day. On the local side, Nico Laprovittola has not yet recovered from his adductor problems and at the last minute it was also announced that Rokas Jokubaitis would not play due to discomfort in the left hip area.
With these premises, both Tomas Satoransky and Jerian Grant seemed condemned to accumulate minutes and they were starters in a great start by Jan Vesely for a local team that took its first notable lead after a triple by Nikola Kalinic (min. 4:35). The Czech point guard sat there and an ill-advised Darío Brizuela took his place (-5 at halftime) and the visitors reacted on the back of Grant and with a triple from former green and black Kyle Guy (15-14, min. 6:46).
The final minutes of the first quarter were marked by equality (21-20), but by then an Oriol Paulí had already scored his first basket who had played as a point guard in some stages of his era at Dreamland Gran Canaria and who was chosen by Roger Grimau to rest ‘Sato’ and given the mistake of the ‘Mamba’.
The Barça youth player made his debut this season in the Euroleague and knew how to direct his vehemence and desire to lead the team with a triple, a 2+1 and a basket after an offensive rebound. 10 points in just six minutes on the track. The Catalan was the key in a Barça that immediately found itself eight points clear (33-25, min. 14:33).
Paulí went to the bench and He was relieved in a spectacular way by Jabari Parker. The American went from a secondary role in the few minutes he had played to putting the team behind him with three extraordinary consecutive baskets, including a dizzying ‘coast to coast’ and a penetration into the past ring (39-28, min. 17 :twenty-one).
Before the break, embarrassing technique to an indignant Roger Grimau for an almost invisible protest (unless it was reiterated) that made him fly into a rage. The referees were so sharp that they forgave him for the ‘rebound’ that he took. At half-time, 45-33 for a Barça notable in defense and despite his 2/10 in triples.
The blaugranas did not hesitate at the restart despite the fact that the PAO seemed more celebrating their victory on Monday against Olympiacos (they had lost 18 of the last 20 Greek ‘classics’). Two triples from Satoransky and Kalinic brought Barça up to 20 points ahead and the match seemed increasingly decided (61-41, min. 26:34).
Kalinic’s intelligence and desire in the offensive rebound more a final appearance by Paulí left the score at a resounding 71-47 with 10 minutes remaining. It only remained to be seen if Roger Grimau would dare to give the alternative to the Italian Dame Sarr, one of the pearls of the youth team who turned 17 last June.
The score of 90-31 and the abysmal difference in rebounds (34-17) spoke for themselves while the referees awarded a double to Paulí, the sole result of his desire to be the protagonist. The difference reached 26 points after a good basket by Brizuela (75-49 at 7:51 left), but began to drop to 75-61 with 3:27 left after 0-12.
Three points from James Nnaji relaxed the game and Dame Sarr even had 82 seconds after being the youngest to debut for Barça in the Endesa League. He couldn’t even throw the transalpine and in the end the result was only 80-72, a difference that does not reflect what was seen in the Palau. Barça did not play practically in the last quarter.
BARÇA, 80: (21+24+26+9): Tomas Satoransky (10), Àlex Abrines (2), Nikola Kalinic (10), Oscar da Silva (2), Jan Vesely (9) -starting five-, Darío Brizuela (8) , Willy Hernangómez (5), Jabari Parker (16), Oriol Paulí (12), Joel Parra (2), James Nnaji (3) and Dame Sarr.
PANATHINAIKOS, 72: (20+13+14+23): Jerian Grant (15), Kyle Guy (6), Juancho Hernangómez, ‘Dinos’ Mitoglou (6), Mathias Lessort (9) -starting five-, Marius Grigonis (11), Olek Balcerowski (12), Panagiotis Kalaitzakis (5), Eleftherios Mantzoukas, Dimitris Moraitis (5) and Alex Samodurov (3).
REFEREES: Sreten Radovic (Croatia), Olegs Latisevs (Latvia) and Joseph Bissang (France). They pointed out a technical foul to local coach Roger Grimau (19:35). They eliminated the local Oriol Paulí due to five personal fouls (39:24).
INCIDENTS: Match corresponding to the sixth day of the men’s Euroleague basketball match played before 7,225 spectators at the Palau Blaugrana (Barcelona).