Mac TA hoping to lift spirits against Haifa

Maccabi Tel Aviv to face Maccabi Haifa less than 72 hours after suffering a heart-wrenching 78- 77 defeat to Olympiacos.

Yogev Ohayon 370 (photo credit: Adi Avishai)
Yogev Ohayon 370
(photo credit: Adi Avishai)
A dejected Maccabi Tel Aviv will look to emerge from the gloom when it hosts Maccabi Haifa in BSL action at Nokia Arena on Sunday night.
Tel Aviv faces Haifa less than 72 hours after suffering a heart-wrenching 78- 77 defeat to Olympiacos to drop to 1-4 in Euroleague Top 16 Group F.
With nine games to play in the Top 16, Maccabi has theoretically still got plenty of time to make up lost ground. However, considering its mediocre displays over recent weeks and with already two home defeats to its name, it is hard to see how the yellow-and-blue can recover from its disastrous start.
Nevertheless, coach David Blatt promised his team would fight until the very end, starting with Thursday’s contest at Besiktas JK in Turkey.
“This isn’t over yet,” said Blatt. “It is tough to lose two games at home, but we refuse to give up. We are in a bad situation and in a big hole, but we aren’t out of it just yet. We aren’t playing well enough at the moment, but I believe we will still have a say in this group.”
Tel Aviv will be expecting to leave for Istanbul on the back of a 12th straight BSL win.
Haifa improved to 9-5 last week with a 96-87 victory over Hapoel Eilat and gave Tel Aviv a fight for three periods before losing 87-67 when the teams met in November.
Eilat will look to rebound from its recent dip in form on Sunday when it hosts Hapoel Gilboa/Galil.
Eilat opened the season with just two defeats from its first nine games, but has lost three of its past five contests to fall to 9-5.
Also Sunday, Bnei Herzliya hosts Hapoel Holon and Ironi Ashkelon visits Barak Netanya.
On Monday, Hapoel Jerusalem goes for its third straight win when it visits Maccabi Ashdod while Hapoel Tel Aviv welcomes Maccabi Rishon Lezion.