AEK Athens won the bronze medals
The 2018-2019 season has ended well for AEK Athens, winning the A1 Greek League bronze medals after beating in the final by 3-1 the newly promoted Peristeri B.C. It was a fair result, looking at the AEK roster and the acquisitions they`ve made before the playoffs. Following I will present some facts about every game.
In game 1, Peristeri made a big surprise, beating AEK away by a 1-point margin, 66-67, after scoring a 3-pointer in the final seconds of the game. What was wrong for AEK, the 3-point percentages. Out of 28 attempts, they only scored 7 baskets. Also in the rebounds battle, Peristeri won 36-25.
In game 2, the stats were different. AEK managed to recover from their poor 3-point performance in game 1 and now scored 16 out of 35 attempts and finished the game with 25 assists. In this game, worth to be mentioned is Gabe York who finished the game with 28 points (8-13 at the 3-point line) and Dusan Sakota with 23 points (6-10 from the 3-point line). With those big numbers, AEK won 79-71, to reclaim their loss from Game 1.
Game 3 was a fierce battle and it was decided in overtime, AEK winning 91-83 and took the advantage in the battle for bronze medals. The Greek players from AEK were remarkable in this game, Vasilis Xanthoupoulos finishing with 19 points and 7 rebounds, while Charis Giannopoulos finished the game with 16 points and 7 rebounds.
In game 4, AEK Athens finished the series, winning 83-82 in a very tight match. In the end, only a free-throw made the difference, despite a big 3-pointer from Peristeri in the final seconds. In this big game, the main weapons for AEK, Gabe York and Vincent Hunter came up with big numbers. York finished with 19 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists and Hunter finished with 18 points (6-6 inside the arc).
This season was a good one for AEK, despite having more ambitions at the beginning of the season. They were eliminated by Brose Bamberg in the quarter-finals of Basketball Champions League by a 2-point difference. After that elimination, AEK focused on Greek League and aimed to make a big impact. For that, they bring two new players, in order to have a chance against Greek powerhouse Panathinaikos. They added Gabe York, which made a huge impact in the playoffs and earned a first-team place very quickly and the ex-Euroleague center Trevor Mbakwe, a very good bench player. Both players brought their contribution, but unfortunately, it wasn`t enough to pass over Promitheas in Semifinals, a result that will be hard to get through. We will see what next season will bring for AEK, but the future looks bright for them.
Photo credit: championsleague.basketball
Bogdan Vasile Tirc