FC Barcelona – Laboral Kutxa: The Blaugrana strike first (92-87)
Pascual's men took the first match in the three-game series against the Basque side En el tram final, un parcial de 0-7 ha empatat el partit a 87 però Navarro i Oleson han sentenciat
David R. Jover
The best versions of Navarro and Oleson were necessary for Barça to take the first game in the play-off against Laboral Kutxa. 29 points from the American, plus 24 from the Catalan, give Barça the chance to close out the series on Saturday in Vitoria.
In the first quarter Barça played well but also showed its defensive vulnerability. The starting 10-7 scoreboard changed to 10-14 for the visitors halfway through the quarter. After the ten minutes were up, Barça had regained the lead 23-20.
Laboral Kutxa, with more to win than to lose, pressured Barça and, little by little, took the lead thanks to Hmilton and Nocioni. The visitors had a three-point lead (27-30) and from that point they controlled the game. The teams went to the break with 36 to 43 on the scoreboard.
After the break, Tomic and Navarro brought Barça within two points. But then Heurtel stepped up. The Frenchman scored 15 points in the third quarter, as did Navarro . The quarter came to an end with 69 to 68 on the scoreboard.
In the closing minutes of the match, Baskonia tried to fight back with a 0-7 run, which tied the game up at 87 with 40 seconds left on the clock. Navarro, however, scored a field goals and Olseon converted his two free throws. The final score was 92 to 87.