Euroleague qualifying round starting today in Vilnius. One the tournament winner will get ticket to the main round of Euroleague. Today we have 2 quarterfinals which I am going to cover.
Varese – Oldenburg
On the paper Varese is a favorite here, because Italian basketball is stronger than German. And that is the main reason why Varese has been set as a favorite here. If they would save last season team core I would bet on them tonight but unfortunately they suprisingly for was not able to hold any of key players from last season. B.Dunston, M.Green and A.Banks left Varese for better contracts, but also the loss of head coach is important. Because Vitucci created very good system in the team which helped them to reach semifinals of Italian championship where they lost series to Siena in 7 games. Frates (new coach of Varese) is experienced coach but a little bit old-schooled and 3 losses in last 4 control games shows that team is not yet addapted to his philosophy.
Oldenburg on other side saved almost players from last season and had good preparation. Unfortunately in the middle of September their captain and leader A.Chubb got injured and team signed a short-term contract with Crosariol to replace him under the rim. Oldenburg has enough skills to win this game and maybe the next one, but looking to the website, press and fan forums seems that nobody wants to play in Euroleague right now. Quality of roster is far from Euroleague level and lacks depth to fight in Beko BBL and Euroleague. But you never know the real plans of the team.
I see Oldenburg as a slight favorite in this match up, but I would agree to bet on them only if pre-match handicap would be set at +5 points.
The total looks more interesting here. Varese has weak defense, allowed 73, 82, 98 and 83 points in their last 4 matches but scored 70+ points in each of them. Oldenburg on other side scored 90 to Eisbaren, 73:61 won against Mersin, and lost to Pinar 76:83. Looking to stats sheet Oldenburg playing fast basketball and Varese also is about offense right now. I expect to see 154+ points game here.
Pick: over 152 @ 1.90 4/10
Lietuvos Rytas – VEF Riga
Still a lot of hidden secrets for me in this match. Lietuvos Rytas in my eyes has the same quality team as Riga, but I am not sure how team is ready for this tournament, because Seibutis and head coach arrived only 2 weeks ago in Vilnius.
Riga had better preparations for this tournament, but they were playing with closed doors and nobody knows what to expect from them. Seems that game style should be the same as last but how good are those young latvians and newcomers?
I prefer to avoid betting on teams I don’t know enough and this one is exactly the game I am forced to skip because of this reason.