Quarterfinals at a Glance: Hapoel Bank Yahav Jerusalem vs. Herbalife Gran Canaria Las Palmas

Feb 10, 2017 by Eurocupbasketball.com Print
Quarterfinals at a Glance: Hapoel Bank Yahav Jerusalem vs. Herbalife Gran Canaria Las Palmas

Group G winner Hapoel Bank Yahav Jerusalem brings a three-game winning streak into the playoffs, but its opponent, Herbalife Gran Canaria Las Palmas has won four straight. These teams meet for the second season in a row; last year Gran Canaria swept both games, including a resounding 108-61 victory in the Canary Islands, but both teams have changed much since. Jerusalem won the EuroCup – then known as the ULEB Cup – in 2004, but this marks the team’s first trip to the quarterfinals in three years and it hasn’t gotten past this stage since 2006. Gran Canaria reached the semifinals last season and the finals the season before. Jerusalem has enjoyed a healthy inside outside attack this season. It is the third-most accurate three-point shooting team (38.7%) and also draws a lot of fouls and has made the second-most free throws (16.6 per game). Curtis Jerrells (17.1 ppg.), is fifth in the EuroCup in scoring, and Jerome Dyson (11.4 ppg.) make up a dynamite guard duo, while in the paint Amar’e Stoudemire (12.8 ppg., 6.6 rpg.) is fifth in the EuroCup in rebounding. Gran Canaria boasts the highest average index rating (106.0) in the competition and is the second-highest scoring team (89.2 ppg.). But it’s not all offense as Gran Canaria leads the EuroCup in steals (10.1 spg.), many of which turn into easy baskets. Kyle Kuric (15.9 ppg.) is the team’s go-to scorer and ranks third in three-point shooting (52.9%) in the EuroCup, while point guard Bo McCalebb (10.7 ppg., 5.1 apg.), who had great success early in his career under Coach Simone Pianigiani at Montepaschi Siena and Fenerbahce Istanbul, will face his former coach for the first time since. Forward Royce O’Neale (10.6 ppg., 5.4 rpg.), who was the Top 16 Round 6 MVP, could emerge as a force in this series, too.