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Barça had to fight long and hard to get the better of Valencia Basket in a gripping EuroLeague fixture against a side that recent toppled them in a league fixture at La Fonteta.
With old friends Víctor Claver and Brandon Davies lining up for the visiting side, the pre-game niceties were soon forgotten as a sometimes high-tempered battle ensued on the court.
A combination of strong defence and an inspired Vesely spurred the Catalans into a strong 25-16 lead at the end of the first period, but the intensity dropped in the second and Valencia suddenly started scoring with worrying ease. Barça went four minutes without a single score and Valencia cut the difference down to one (29-28).
Things suddenly weren't happening for Barça, and even seasoned scorers like Abrines and Laprovittola weren't getting the kind of points they are used to getting.
The 3-point attempts were particularly going begging, but Valencia were hardly racking up the points either and neither side was able to establish any kind of meaningful lead for the longest time. With just over four minutes left, Abrines finally nailed his first three after five failed attempts, and that made it 65-60. And that was the turning point that Barça needed.
Kalinic bagged another three to make it +8, and although Valencia did respond strongly, a Vesely slam-dunk more or less sealed it for the blaugrana. Valencia kept threatening all the way to the end but couldn't do enough, and Barça remain unbeaten at home in all competitions.
Barça: Satoransky (9), Laprovittola (7), Kalinic (7), Da Silva (0), Vesely (17), Brizuela (-), Hernangómez (9), Abrines (12), Parker (9), Nnaji (0), Jokubaitis (2) & Parra (2).
Valencia: Puerto (2), Reuvers (2), Jones (15), Ojeleye (8), Touré (4), Claver (3), Pradilla (2), López-Arostegui (10), Ferrando (0), Inglis (13), Jovic (6) & Davies (5).
Periods: 25-16, 37-33, 54-52, 74-70.
Referees: Fernando Rocha, Igor Dragojevic & Steve Bittner
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