Three-time Euroleague champion and eight-time European titlist, EA7 – Emporio Armani Milan is still climbing to the top as it makes its way into the 2011-12 Turkish Airlines Euroleague regular season with a famed coach and a strong determination to win the title. Likewise, a dominant team in the Serbian and Adriatic Leagues, Partizan mt:s is also trying to reach the Top 16 or even higher in 2011-/12 season by earning some spots in the qualifying rounds.
The game is already set between EA7 – Emporio Armani and Partizan mt:s for Game 5. This will happen on Thursday, November 17, 2011 20:45 CET at Mediolanum Forum Milan, Italy. The level of excitement is not that much higher to both teams, EA7 and Partizan join the group with similar 2-2 records. Whichever team wins would be happy to find their group as high as being tied on the second spot, but not lower than second place. The two teams are so close in Group C standing and with every game results could also have a great impact to potential tiebreak situations.
Both teams were very lucky from last week's playoffs. After a neck-and-neck game throughout the round, EA7 Emporio Armani finished a thrilling game with 76-81 win in the final minute against Belgacom Spirou of Belgium last November 10, 2011 at RTL SPIROUDOME. Partizan m:ts made another great victory in their homecourt at Pionir Arena by defeating Real Madrid 80-79 in a dramatic battle.
Coaches of different teams embark their messages to their opponent and to their respective team members.
"We are facing a very dangerous team which this year is merging the traditional values of one of the best schools in European basketball with top level players. A team with dominant players like Nikola Pekovic or Acie Law and Milan Macvan or Miroslav Raduljica. They play really well, are very powerful close to the basket and have good transition thanks to their point guards. We know we must play with a lot of energy and concentration, and also with toughness because we are aware of the fact that this game is totally crucial for our Top 16 options. We hope that after the great domestic win over Montepaschi, our confidence has grown and we are able to play 40 minutes with great intensity." - Sergio Scariolo, EA7 Emporio Armani head coach
As the Top 16 gets closer, each game is very important. I am sure Armani will try not to be surprised at its home court anymore. Our goal is to play with power for all 40 minutes and to try to reach the final minutes with the ending uncertain. We are going to play against a team of extreme quality and our task is so hard." - Vlade Jovanovic, Partizan mt:s head coach
Which team is going to win Game 5 and improve their standing? To note, both EA7 Emporio Armani and Partizan mt:s have full set of rosters available this coming Thursday. No players were said to be injured from the past playoffs.