The Roca Team is aiming for its first victory in the EuroCup Top 16 by hosting Lithuanian side Rytas Vilnius, double winner of the tournament (2005 / 2009).

A very important match will be taking place at the Gaston-Médecin arena on Wednesday, January 9th at 7 pm. A big European showdown between the tried and true colors of the Baltic club and the Rouges et Blancs of Monaco.

The duel between Elmedin Kikanovic (30, 2.11m) and Martynas Echodas (21, 2.06m) represents two generations of big men. Kikanovic is one of the most dominant players in EuroCup. So far, he has averaged 16.5 points, 5.2 rebounds, and 1.3 assists. Martyn Echodas is playing in his second pro season and is showing week after week that the trust placed in him is already paying off. Echodas is averaging 10.5 points and 5.5 rebounds, with his stats regularly improving throughout the season.

Keys to success

The Roca Team desperately wants to earn its first victory in the Top-16. ASM needs to avoid going 0-2 in its first two matches, a record that would darken its future in the competition. One of the main factors will be to control the pace of the game and the transitional tempo. Rytas has one of the best steals records in EuroCup play (8.3 per match). The two teams are very close on the paper and it is probably the small details that will make the difference … Playing on home-court might be decisive for the Roca Boys.

Pre-match notes from coach Filipovski

Sasa Filipovski: “Rytas is a team that combines talent and experience. They have skilled 3-point shooters and carry the ball with speed. Seeley and Sutton are strong in 1-on-1 play and they have Parakhousky (2,11m) under the blocks. It will be necessary to defend well and to be effective in attack. A crucial point will be rebounding.”