The point guard matchup between the two Nicks, Calathes of FC Barcelona and Weiler-Babb of FC Bayern Munich, could be decisive when their teams meet in Game 5 on Tuesday.
Major Matchup: Barcelona’s Calathes vs. Bayern’s Weiler-Babb
Calathes, the EuroLeague’s career leader in assists, comes off his worst game of the series and has been in a shooting slump since the playoffs began. After shooting a career-high 38.1% from downtown in the regular season, he has made only 1 of 12 shots from behind the arc against Bayern. Calathes posted 3 points, 3 assists and 2 turnovers in Game 4 for a performance index rating of -3.
Weiler-Babb has excelled in Bayern’s two wins in the series with 12 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists and 1 steal in each game. For the series, he has averaged a PIR of 16.3 with 10.0 points, 6.3 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 0.8 steals. His long arms have also helped to challenge Barcelona’s three-point shooters – Calathes among them – on the perimeter.
Barcelona at its best has Calathes orchestrating the offense and pulling the string to get open shots for the perimeter shooters and the big me alike. Bayern prefers a slower pace in which Weiler-Babb can make an impact at both ends, whether challenging the shots of the Barcelona three-point shooters – including Calathes – or creating on offense. Keep an eye on this matchup in Game 5.