Turkish Airlines EuroLeague
One of the hottest young players in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague, Crvena Zvezda Meridianbet Belgrade center Filip Petrusev, has capped his rise by earning the MVP honor for Round 17, the first of his two seasons in the competition. Petrusev posted career highs of 25 points and a performance index rating of 36, the best in Round 17, as Zvezda held on for a 75-77 road win at Valencia Basket. He made 7 of 10 two-point shots and 11 of 11 free throws to go with 9 rebounds on the night. His free throw total was the best perfect game at the foul line of any EuroLeague player this season and included 2 with 10 seconds left that sealed the victory.
Augustine Rubit of FC Bayern Munich followed with a PIR of 34 as his team downed visiting Panathinaikos Athens 84-68. Rubit was near-perfect for Bayern, making 9 of 13 two-point shots and 5 of 6 free throws for 23 points, his second-best scoring mark in 136 EuroLeague games over five seasons. He also had 3 rebounds, 2 steals, 1 assist and 1 block while drawing 9 fouls and committing 0 turnovers in 28 minutes on court to tie his personal-best PIR.
Partizan Mozzart Bet Belgrade center Mathias Lessort followed with a PIR of 27 in his team's 100-80 home win against visiting AS Monaco. Lessort combined 21 points on 8-for-10 two-point and 5-for-6 free-throw shooting plus 8 rebounds and 1 assist for his PIR total. Another center, Laurynas Birutis, was the main protagonist as Zalgiris Kaunas registered an 86-66 home win against Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul. Birutis had 15 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 steals and a block for a career-high PIR of 27.
Pierria Henry of Cazoo Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz and Petr Cornelie of Real Madrid shared fifth-best PIR of Round 17, with 25 each. Henry had 19 points, 5 assists and rebounds in an 85-84 road loss at ALBA Berlin. Cornelie combined 18 points with 5 rebounds while missing just one shot in Real's 98-65 home win against Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv.
Individual highs: Walter Tavares, Real Madrid, 5 blocks
Petrusev led all Round 17 scorers with 25 points. Dwayne Bacon of Panathinaikos is the overall scoring leader with 20.9 points per game. Freddie Gillespie of Bayern led all Round 17 rebounders with 10 boards. Lessort of Partizan tops the season-long charts with 7.8 per game. Nicolas Laprovittola dished 10 assists, more than any other player in Round 17. The league leader is Kostas Sloukas of Olympiacos Piraeus with 9 per game. Iffe Lundberg of Virtus Segafredo Bologna copped 5 steals for the best total in Round 17. The overall leader is Thomas Walkup of Olympiacos with 2.2 per game. Walter Tavares of Real Madrid rejected 5 shots in Round 17 and boosted his league-leading average to 2.7 per game. Laprovittola was the sole player to achieve a double-double in Round 17, combining 11 points with his 10 assists