When Panathinaikos OPAP Athens and Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade clash, there is always an expectation of some hard-nosed defense.
Major matchup: White, Panathinaikos vs. Kalinic, Zvezda
While Okaro White and Nikola Kalinic are just the right men to get that job done, they have both been providing a lot on the offensive end, too. Coach Dimitris Priftis has a lot of confidence in White, who has more starts (19) than any other Panathinaikos player this season. He is posting 8.8 points and 4.0 rebounds, but White has stepped up in recent weeks, averaging 13.4 points on 7-of-13 three-point shooting while snagging 4.2 rebounds over the last five games. His performances on offense only add to his contributions, with White being one of the important defensive players for the Greens.
Kalinic has been Zvezda's leader, doing it all in his career-best season. Starting in each of his 22 appearances, he is averaging 13.1 points, 3.5 rebounds and 3.4 assists. Kalinic plays both forward positions is and known as one of the best defensive players in the league, his muscles and athleticism have always allowed him to take on bigger players down low, such as Okaro White. And while his defensive role is important on Zvezda's ferocious defense, Kalinic will also need to ignite Zvezda's offense.