A big congratulations go out this morning to Caja Laboral Baskonia, who achieved what was unthinkable a week ago in completing the three-game sweep of FC Barcelona last night to win, 79-78, and take the 2009-10 ACB title.
Regular-season ACB MVP Tiago Splitter was named the series top player after contributing a double-double of 14 points and 13 rebounds, while the real story for Baskonia was the surprising success of Lior Eliyahu. After playing just 25 minutes combined in the first two games, this past offseason’s key acquisition made it all worth the money in playing nearly 26 minutes in game three and befuddling Barça’s big men to the tune of 9-of-14 shooting for an even 18 points.
BallinEurope will leave you with the video highlights of the game as we inevitably kick off an offseason full of questions. For Barcelona, it’ll be “What happened?” and “What do we know do?” For basketball historians, the relevant question upon the final buzzer sounding became simply, “When the hell was the last time the Blaugrana lost three games *in a row* in a season?”
BiE will now happily allow the analysts and the pundits to run this one through the wringer — after all, the 2010 FIBA World Championship is on the horizon. For BiE the key to the series was simple: For three games, Caja Laboral Baskonia was simply the better *team* with the better coach.