25january

Khimki Bench Steps Up vs. Bisons

Khimki defeated Bisons at home on Monday evening, 113-83. Zoran Dragic helped the Russian club pile up a 20-point 1st-quarter lead, knocking down his first four shots for 10 points in the opening two minutes. The visitors played hard from start to finish, but couldn't match Khimki's depth, losing by 30.

Recap
Moscow Region newcomer Josh Boone checked in three minutes into the game. Khimki already led, 19-2, and pushed the advantage to 28-4 at the six-minute mark. Zoran Dragic was a big factor in the hot start, knocking down six of seven field-goal attempts, while Tyrese Rice dished out five assists.

The offense eventually cooled off. After giving up 34 in the opening period, Bisons held Khimki to 16 in the 2nd quarter, cutting the deficit to 15 at halftime. Tuukka Kotti, Martin Zeno and Ike Udanoh led the way for the visitors, beating Khimki in transition and scoring from mid-range.

Rimas Kurtinaitis turned to his bench in the second half. Boone was productive, finishing with 15 points in 19 minutes. Stanislav Ilnitsky (seven points) and Maxim Sheleketo (eight points) also contributed.

Late in the 3rd quarter, the home team went on another run. Petteri Koponen and Zoran Dragic connected from outside, Rice hit back-to-back baskets and Egor Vyaltsev knocked down the last shot of the period to give Khimki an 87-61 lead.

Moscow Region cruised to victory in the 4th quarter, tagging Bisons for 113 points. With the win, Khimki improves to 13-3, 3rd in the standings.

Star Player
Zoran Dragic. The Slovenian forward rarely starts for Khimki, but he took advantage of tonight's opportunity. Dragic was red-hot in the 1st quarter, scoring 15 points on seven shots. He finished with 23 on 9-10 shooting.

Stat of the Game
+22 - Khimki had a big scoring advantage on the bench.

Quotes
Khimki head coach Rimas Kurtinaitis:
- I'm happy that we won. We've got a busy schedule right now and our top players have been on the court a lot. Today, I had an opportunity to give Rice, Shved, Augustine and Monia some rest. Everyone had opportunities and played well. Not everything went to plan, but the game was exciting and I think the fans enjoyed it. Most importantly, we're all healthy and everything's going according to plan. Boone played pretty well, but he needs to be more intense and aggressive on defense. But it's not surprising, given that he just came over from another team. The general impression from his play was positive. He's got potential.

Bisons head coach Greg Gibson:
- After the 1st quarter, we did some things well, but I have to admit that Khimki has an incredible team. I think they are the best team we've played this season. Today, our rotation let us down. Aubrey Coleman and Mikko Koivisto couldn't play. Nonetheless, I'm satisfied that after trailing by 25 points in the 1st quarter, we managed to stay focused and compete with Khimki. When your opponent shoots that kind of percentage, it's hard to win. Today was that kind of day.

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