The biggest stories from the past seven days.
Khimki exacts an extra dose of revenge
Khimki hosted UNICS in the game of the week. Both coached by hard-nosed Greeks, Khimki and UNICS met last season in the Final Four and entered Sunday’s game with perfect records. Before tip-off, UNICS guard Evgeny Kolesnikov emphasized the importance of keeping Khimki from scoring 80 points. Kazan executed on that end, but Khimki was prepared for a physical, defensive battle. Moscow Region limited the visitors to a measly 65 points, one of Kazan’s worst results in recent years.
Khimki took control of the game to start the 3rd quarter with a 20-3 run and had little trouble hanging on for a 78-65 win. The Yellow and Blue also got revenge for two losses to UNICS during the 2017-18 regular season.
Shved regains lead in VTB United League all-time scoring chase
Following Khimki’s big win over UNICS, few noticed that Alexey Shved with 24 points had once again passed Vitaly Fridzon for 1st place in the all-time scoring chase. But the Loko guard has one game in hand, so there could be a few more twists and turns to this race.
Sold-out crowd at the game of the week
Khimki toppled UNICS and picked up a 5th-straight win in the League in front of a sold-out crowd.
Don’t mess with the cheerleaders
If you’re a basketball player, there is one cardinal rule to remember: Don’t go on the court before the cheerleaders are done performing. Anthony Gill can confirm.
Play of the Week
Jordan Mickey almost broke the backboard after an alley-oop from Alexey Shved. Literally.
Zenit wins for the 1st time this season
Zenit St. Petersburg began the season with two straight losses for the first time in club history. Vasily Karasev’s men got on track in Riga, overpowering VEF, 86-77.
Philip Scrubb led Zenit with 20 points, while Jalen Reynolds left the biggest impression, scoring nearly all of his 14 points on rim-rattling dunks.
Kalev and Avtodor shift into high gear
The highest-scoring game of the season took place in Tallinn as Avtodor picked up a 113-102 win over Kalev. Multiple records fell in the shootout:
– 74 combined points in the final 10 minutes: record for points scored in a quarter
– 132 combined points after halftime: record for points scored in a half
– 113 points from Avtodor: new season record
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Фантастическая концовка в Таллине: @kalevcramo и @bcavtodor набрали в сумме 74 очка за четверть – это новый рекорд Лиги ВТБ 🔝 ⠀ Kalev and Avtodor combined to set a new VTB United League record for points in a quarter, scoring 74 in a wild finish in Tallinn 🔝⠀ #vtbleague #seasonx #vtbleaguerecords #лигавтб
The American duo of Perrin Buford and Trae Golden were completely unstoppable, combining for 54 points on 85% shooting (23-26). It’s hard to lose when your leaders play like that.
Nizhny played Loko with a 100% Russian roster
Nizhny Novgorod can’t catch a break. It seems like a different player has been hurt in every game this season. Zoran Lukic only had nine men available for the home game vs. Lokomotiv, but he squeezed the maximum possible out of them.
Nizhny wasn’t able to win, falling 88-75. But it’s unlikely any fans blamed the team for the loss. The Black and White battled hard.
Not surprisingly, Nizhny’s bench wasn’t able to contribute much. Loko’s reserves enjoyed a 40-19 edge in scoring.
What’s a “Tryulnik?”
During the trip to Nizhny Novgorod, Lokomotiv also tried to figure out what a “tryulnik” is from the locals.
“Tryulnik,” as you might know, is the name of Nizhny Novgorod’s mascot.
Enisey enjoys its biggest win since the spring of 2016
Enisey crushed Astana by 26, 96-70, in March 2016. Krasnoyarsk went two and a half years before winning by 20+ points again. Tsmoki was the victim: Enisey ran riot in Minsk, led by John Roberson’s career high 31 points on seven 3-pointers.
Tsmoki has endured a nightmare start, losing four in a row at home to post the team’s worst record since 2014. Minsk is trying to address its problems, bringing back one of last season’s stars, Devon Saddler, this week.
CSKA wins without De Colo and Rodriguez
The Army Men chose to rest two leaders, Sergio Rodriguez and Nando De Colo, for the game vs. PARMA. Perm tried to take advantage, showing some flashes in the 1st quarter, including these two dunks from Alexander Vinnik.
PARMA was trigger-happy from start to finish, setting a new club record for three-point attempts (37). But CSKA was unfazed, rolling to a 5th-straight win.
Astana breaks into the Top-5
League newcomers Zielona Gora debuted at home, but Astana decided to ruin the party, knocking out the Poles, 91-82. The Kazakh club has scored 90+ points in three straight games and made it clear the win over Zenit was no fluke.
Впервые за все время выступления в Лиге @PBCAstana набирает 90+ очков в трех матчах подряд 💪🏻
For the first time in club's history Astana scores 90+ PTS in 3 straight VTB League games 💪🏻 pic.twitter.com/cePtOr7Hha
— VTB United League (@VTBUL) October 29, 2018
After four weeks, Astana is tied for 3rd place with Lokomotiv and UNICS. How many more miracles can coach Emil Rajkovic pull off with his new team?
📊 Таблица по итогам четырех недель нового сезона
📊 Standings after Week #4 pic.twitter.com/nUbBJrzen9
— VTB United League (@VTBUL) October 30, 2018
Team of the Week
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⭐ Алексей Швед, Семен Антонов, Трэй Голден, Перрин Бьюфорд и Джон Роберсон – в символической пятерке четвертой игровой недели ⠀ ⭐ @shved.1, @saimon011, @traegolden, @pbuf2 and @j.r.flurry select to All-VTB League Team of the Week #4 ⠀ #vtbleague #seasonx #allvtbteam #лигавтб