San Pablo Burgos has to defend their home-court vs. Dinamo Sassari

The Basketball Champions League playoffs will continue on Tuesday with the second leg of the Round 16. One of the most anticipated series in this round is the one between Spanish side San Pablo Burgos and the Italian Dinamo Sassari, both clubs that are participating for the first time in BasketballCL this season.

Last Wednesday, the two teams played the tightest Game 1 in the Champions League. While Sassari absolutely dominated the 3rd quarter, Burgos was better in the other three quarters and managed to upset the squad coached by former legendary point guard Gianmarco Pozzecco. Brazilian Vitor Benite torched the home side with 30 points (7/10 on 3 pointers) and Earl Clark also had a solid performance with 16 points and 7 rebounds.

While the Spanish side has the advantage of the home-court for the 2nd leg, Dinamo Sassari shouldn’t be underestimated. They have a solid roster, including experienced foreigners like Miro Bilan, Jaime Smith or Dwayne Evans and quality homegrown players (Michele Vitali, Stefano Gentile and Marco Spissu). They are able to surprise any team and it’s not by accident that they qualified this far in the Champions League, while they are currently occupying the 2nd place in their domestic league.

While the coronavirus that spreads around the world already caused many sporting events to be played behind closed doors and games where Italian teams participate were especially affected (visiting team Sassari already played behind closed doors in the Italian league), it is expected that Burgos will let their home fans attend the game in the Coliseum Burgos. The support of the home fans could prove decisive for Burgos to reach the Quarterfinals, which would be an amazing achievement for a club that plays on a professional level only since 2015 and participates in the European competitions for the first time in history.

Photo: Basketball Champions League

Imre Halasz