Panathinaikos – Fenerbahce. Game 2 preview & pick

OAKA Arena fansGreen army will try to rebound tonight after tough 58:71 loss in Game 1. 
Panathinaikos is facing plenty of pressure when it hosts Fenerbahce Istanbul in Game 2 of their highly-anticipated playoff series on Thursday. In a game of runs just 48 hours earlier, Fenerbahce used a huge second half and a career-night by Bogdan Bogdanovic to get a much wanted 58-71 road win in Game 1. Panathinaikos led by 16 points at 23rd minute, but Fenerbahce went on a huge 8-40 run.

Bogdanovic collected 23 points on 5-of-6 three-point shooting, plus 5 rebounds, 4 assists, and career-highs of 3 blocks and a performance index rating 35. The win also marked the first time, in five attempts, that eight-time EuroLeague winning coach Zeljko Obradovic beat his former team in Athens.

Game 1 showcased how the teams’ respective defenses are the biggest strengths of these two squads, as both ranked among the top four in the competition this season, with Fenerbahce allowing 74.3, and Panathinaikos 74.4 per contest. The Greens certainly hope to get bigger offensive contribution from Chris Singleton who finished with 3 points, 5 rebounds and zero steals in Game 1, all below his averages of 12.3 points and a team-leading 6 rebounds and 1.3 steals.

Prediction

As expected Tuesday match was played in ugly low paced tempo, where Fenerbahce did almost 60% from 3-points line and won 71:58. Only 125 attacks were done there and in terms of pace I don’t expect any changes. It’s clear that defense will be key for sucess for both teams. If percentage would closer to average for each team on Tuesday PAO would score 66-70 and Fenerbahce in 60-66 pts.  So again I recommend to go with under, because line is too high for such slow pace.

As for the outcome I expect Panathinaikos to equalize series by showing much harder defense in Game 2.

Expected pace: 125-130 attacks
Home avg. scoring: 0.99-1,10 pts/attack
Away avg. scoring: 1.01-1,12 pts/attack
Expected total range: 125-144 points

Prediction: Panathinaikos 72 – 61 Fenerbahce

Pick: Under 142.5 @ 1.92 7/10

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