The reigning champions, Umana Venezia meeting the next champions, Virtus Bologna

In the Round 20 of Seria A, the current champions, Reyer Venezia, receive the visit of current leaders Virtus Bologna in a tough match between two teams with big expectations this season. In their last meeting, Virtus took the victory, 75-70 thanks to a very good fourth quarter and a nice performance from Milos Teodosic who ended with 22 points and 7 assists in 21 minutes.

The morale is sky-high in Venezia’s camp after winning 8 of last 10 games in all competitions. They played very well lately especially defensively where they kept their last opponents to less than 72 points per game. In the last game, they travelled to Greece, where they meet Promitheas in another tough match. The match started well for the Italian team and managed to protect the lead the entire game, only in the fourth quarter Promitheas managed to tie the score, but in the end, Venezia took a big victory away, which will count very much if they will win at home. Venezia played very well on defense, holding their opponents to only 3 shots made from distance out of 20 attempts. The main contributors were: Mitchell Watt (17 points and 3 rebounds), Stefano Tonut (15 points and 4 rebounds) and Jeremy Chappell (8 points and 3 assists).

Virtus Bologna came into this game with the last form in the last 10 games: 8W-2L. They are currently on the 1st place in Seria A and their aim is to stay there as long as they can. In their last match, they meet another Italian team, Trento in the Group E of Eurocup and won that game 73-67 after a nice defensive display from Virtus. Their opponents scored only 37% of their shots, including 29% from distance. Milos Teodosic had a stellar performance here, scoring 23 points and dished out five assists, while Julian Gamble (13 points and 11 rebounds) and Vincent Hunter (11 points and 5 rebounds). For Virtus, Devyn Marble, the newest addition has chances to make his debut here.

With both teams in good form, is very hard to predict who will win here. Venezia may have the advantage of playing home in a sold-out Palasport Taliercio, but Virtus has in Milos Teodosic one of the best European guards and the main reason for their successful year. However, I expect a home-win here, by a small margin.

Photo: Eurocup

Bogdan Vasile Tirc