EuroLeague - Round 17 MVP: Kostas Papanikolaou, Olympiacos Piraeus
Not only did Olympiacos Piraeus grab a 91-87 overtime victory against KIROLBET Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz in a thriller on Tuesday, but veteran forward Kostas Papanikolaou earned himself the MVP honor with a performance index rating of 31, the best among players on winning teams in Round 17. Papanikolaou finished with 22 points, his career high in 192 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague games. He hit 6 of 7 three-point shots – one of them to force overtime with 3.7 seconds left – and downed 4 of 4 free throws to go with 6 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 blocks and 1 steal. His PIR of 31 was the second-highest in his career, and he became MVP of the Round for the second time after earning his first such honor in 2013. Mike James of AX Armani Exchange Olimpia Milan had the highest PIR of this round but his team lost at home, 85-90, to FC Barcelona Lassa. James had 20 points, 8 assists, 7 rebounds and 2 steals for a PIR of 33. Zach LeDay of Olympiacos also had a solid performance against Baskonia, coming off the bench to contribute 23 points on 10-of-13 two-point shooting, 9 rebounds, a steal and a block for a PIR of 30. Nick Calathes of Panathinaikos OPAP Athens came next with a PIR of 29 as he had 14 points, 11 assists, 6 rebounds and 3 steals in a 77-67 home win against FC Bayern Munich. Norris Cole of Buducnost VOLI Podgorica, Thomas Heurtel of Barcelona and Vladimir Micov of Milan, each with a PIR of 27, completed the top individual performances in Round 17.