Mac TA faces Hasharon ahead of Top 16 draw

Maccabi Tel Aviv already guaranteed to finish second in Euroleague Group C, will be second seed in Wednesday’s draw.

December 25, 2011 02:43
1 minute read.
Maccabi Tel Aviv's Lior Eliyahu

Maccabi Tel Aviv's Lior Eliyahu 311. (photo credit: Adi Avishai)

Maccabi Tel Aviv visits Bnei Hasharon in BSL action on Sunday night, but it will already have one eye on Wednesday’s Euroleague Top 16 draw in Barcelona.

Despite already being guaranteed of finishing second in Euroleague Group C and being a second seed in Wednesday’s draw, Maccabi wrapped up the regular season with an 86-69 win at Belgacom Charleroi on Thursday night to improve to a 7-3 record.

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Barcelona and CSKA Moscow are undoubtedly the strongest teams from the first seeding pot, with Turkey’s Fenerbahce a far more comfortable opponent.

Tel Aviv’s possible rivals from the third seeding pot are Cantu (Italy), Unicaja Malaga (Spain) and Unics Kazan (Russia), with either Bilbao (Spain), Zalgiris Kaunas (Lithuania) or Galatasaray (Turkey) to complete the yellow-and-blue’s Top 16 group.

“I don’t really have any preferences in the draw,” assistant coach Guy Goodes said on Friday. “But I do hope we get one very strong team so that we don’t have to face it in the quarterfinals. Every team which reached the Top 16 is clearly pretty good.”

Maccabi is expected to complete the signing of Charleroi guard Demond Mallet in the coming week and Goodes is confident he will have a significant impact.

“We have a very dominant inside game so we believe Mallet’s experience will help us a lot,” said Goodes about the 33- year-old American playmaker, who ended the Euroleague regular season as the third top scorer with 18.9 points per game after netting 13 against Maccabi on Thursday.

Four more BSL games will be played on Monday. Hapoel Jerusalem visits BC Habika’a, Hapoel Gilboa/Galil hosts Maccabi Ashdod, Maccabi Rishon Lezion welcomes Maccabi Haifa and Ironi Ashkelon faces Barak Netanya.

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