BC ASTANA vs BC TSMOKI MINSK
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“What can we expect between two most lunatic VTB United League teams that pay from very little to no attention to their defence? Yes, plenty of points, you got it right!
Astana Tigers are a funny team. They keep on signing some solid players for their level and changing coaches when things aren’t going their way but the naked truth is this team has got one hell of a road in front of them to become a decent club. To be a well-run professional club you don’t need to have only a decent budget and a few high class players but the whole infrastructure. Astana doesn’t seem to get it. Therefore, players like Kolesnikov, Johnson, Hayes, Calathes, Caner-Medley, or former Lithuanian national team head coach Butautas could be prolonging their respectful careers at stronger clubs but they’re in Astana for now, because they are paid well in there and there’s little pressure on them when it comes to the results. Under these circumstances Astana always plays light offensive-minded basketball with zero defence, trying to simply outscore the rivals. Astana seldom struggles offensively at home and they shouldn’t feel starved for points in this game, even without talismanic playmaker Johnson, as Tsmoki Minsk cares little about defensive tasks on their own halfcourt. What is going to cause much less joy for Astana fans is the absence of defence before meeting one of the best-scoring teams in the league. Although Tsmoki doesn’t have a long bench this season but they don’t seem to need one averaging 83. 5 points per game. I expect Hilliard, Maras, Stutz, Kudrautsau, Mirkovic, and Gray rip Astana’s defence apart, and even the out-of-form trio of old hands Liutych, Lashkevich, and Ulyanko can contribute in Astana more than they usually do. Just like Astana, Tsmoki don’t care about defending at all and simply entertain on offence, trying to score as much as they can.
So, not to get into further details, we’ve got here two defensively-inept and careless sides with an old school habit to score points for fun. With that in mind, it seems logical to expect a feasty basketball match.”