The 84-82 Blaugrana comes less than a second after the end. Messina’s team played a great game: a relic of regret
The dream is broken with 8/10 from the end, when Higgins nails the 84-82 final that sends Barcelona to The Euroleague is playing against Aves. Milan qualify for the third-place final on Sunday at 17:30 against CSKA Moscow, but it would have been deserving of going there, to that final.
Messina’s team made a masterpiece, it faced difficulty in what was in the regular season one of the strongest teams in Europe, and with Punter scored a hat-trick in an open field to move forward, and qualify for the final. He got it wrong and broke his dream. Too bad, because this Olympia has the personality of its leader, Ettore Messina. He has shown that he can be among the greats in Europe.
Barcelona seemed to be able to dominate, when they kicked off the first half final, until they reached +11 and returned to the locker room ahead 51-42. Messina asked his team to go up in defense: he was satisfied. The third quarter of Olimpia is awesome, really very cool: 29-16 and Blaugrana on ropes, even under 67-59 and unable to break through the Messina wall. Calathes is the Shock Man, the one who reopens the game and gives one final star quarter, to bite off his nails with passion. The final quarter is head-to-head, exchanging punches between two great boxers who know how to penetrate the opposing goalkeeper. Barcelona loses Calathes by 3’20 “from the end, Milan tries to take advantage of it. The last minute begins at 82-82: Olympia, in the last possession, freed Punter, who could not be held back throughout the second half, but his hat-trick was broken on the iron. Barcelona combines and begins. By counterattacking, Higgins tries the two-player basket and decides which match appears to be heading towards overtime.
In Milan, only disappointment remained. Huge, because it reached a step that no one wanted to take at the start of the season and not only did it come true, for the first time in 29 years, it was also more than deserved. Barcelona were a great candidate, but on the pitch they never looked better than Olympia, despite all their weapons. In fact, if Milan were in the final there would be nothing to say. Instead Barcelona goes there. Olympia must be satisfied with the certainty of being among the greats in Europe. After this game, after this mockery, there will be no consolation. When there is time to absorb what happened in Cologne, it will seem like an achievement.
Milan: Punter 23, Mecov 14, Shields 13
Barcelona: Mirotic 21, Calathes 17, Higgins 11
May 28, 2021 (Change to May 28, 2021 | 23:50)
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