So here we are. Eurobasket 2011 goes live today. First time in its history tournament will last more than 3 weeks and this is something new too. It is not easy to be in top form 3 weeks in a row so big teams will try to force things in first two rounds to avoid form slip in deciding games.
I am still travelling today so today’s Eurobasket edition will be shorter but from tomorrow I expect to cover it more deeply.
Serbia – Italy
Both teams have very good offense and not looking optimal in defense according to their friendlies games. Italy will try to control pace but offensive quality of both sides prevail over defensive capabilities. Also young serbian team could try to speed up the game pace.
I see quite close game here with both sides reaching 70 points mark. 147,5 line looks pretty right here but I feel that this one will go over the total by few points.
Pick: over 146,5 @ 1.90 3/10 Unibet
Lithuania – Great Britain
This one looks quite easy to decide. In friendlies these teams showed fastest pace among all teams and game pace should be really high now. Especially taking into account that Luol Deng now will be full time worker on the field after spending 20-25 minutes in preparation games. Lithuania is looking ok offensively but in defense doing too much mistakes and don’t expect them to erase in a few days. Simply this team is not tough on defense.
I expect something like 86-77 for Lithuania here.
Pick: over 156.5 @ 1.85 4/10 William Hill
Croatia – Finland
Finland is not a bad team at all. They have probably best roster in their history with Kopponen, Ranniko, Mottola and many others good players in the roster and playing well organized basketball on both sides of the court. Surely, Croatia has more potential inside with such players like Tomas, Antic, Popovic but they are still a young team.
I expect to see Finland in 70-76 points range and this should be enough to hold 13 points handicap.
Pick: Finland +13.5 @ 1.90 3/10 Expekt
Spain – Poland
Poland should be in big trouble offensively with one&only T.Kelati capable of scoring baskets. Gortat, Lampe is out for Poland this year and without inside presense their offense is too predictable for such great defensive team as Spain. Spain away from home usually usually plays from defense and they are not so great offensively in first matches.
Poland will slow down pace of the game to avoid big loss and Spain should agree to this tempo because they should not force their form right now. I expect to see Poland in 57-64 points range and Spain in 77-85. Fair total line should be around 140 points as for me.
Pick: under 148.5 @ 1.93 4/10 Pinnacle