Maccabi TA crushes Lasko in Adriatic League match-up

Maccabi Tel Aviv won its 10th straight game in all competitions.

Maccabi Tel Aviv 311 (photo credit: Adi Avishai)
Maccabi Tel Aviv 311
(photo credit: Adi Avishai)
Maccabi Tel Aviv won its 10th straight game in all competitions on Thursday night, crushing Lasko of Slovenia 87-51 at Nokia Arena to improve to 13-1 in the Adriatic League.
Maccabi got off to a slow start in Demond Mallet’s debut for the yellow-and-blue, but the gulf in class between the teams soon showed and Tel Aviv claimed yet another easy win.
David Blatt’s team has now won its last nine games by an average 29.4 points and will be confident of cruising once more when it hosts Novo Mesto in the Adriatic on Saturday night.
David Blu led six Maccabi players in double-figures with 16 points, while Shawn James added 13 points, 10 rebounds, seven blocks and four steals.
Theo Papaloukas also contributed 13 points, with Jon Scheyer even getting in on the act, scoring 10 points.
Mallet had two points and three assists in his debut, but will be getting plenty more of playing time ahead of Maccabi’s Euroleague Top 16 opener at Zalgiris Kaunas in two weeks time.
Considering Maccabi entered the game leading the Adriatic standings and Lasko was rock bottom with a 2-11 record, there seemed to be little doubt that the yellow-and-blue would sail to an easy win.
However, Blatt was forced to call a timeout after just four minutes following Luka Lapornik’s basket, which gave the Slovenians a 9-2 lead.
A Jaka Brodnik three-pointer extended the gap to double-digits (14-4), but it took Maccabi just over two minutes to erase the deficit and a dunk by Lior Eliyahu to end the first period completed a 15-1 run, giving the yellow-and-blue a 19-15 margin.
Maccabi’s cushion reached 16 points (41-25) by the break and Blatt used the second half to experiment with different lineups ahead of far more difficult and important games.
In other basketball news, Adi Azulai resigned as Bnei Hasharon coach on Thursday after just five games at the helm.
Bnei Hasharon won just one game under Azulai, losing its last three encounters by an average 38.3 points.