EuroLeague 2024 Final: Panathinaikos returns to the top

por Roberto Anidos publicado en 2024 Decade 2020 EuroLeague Panathinaikos Real Madrid

Real Madrid faced its third consecutive final, Panathinaikos returned to the decisive match thirteen years later. In the end, the Whites suffered the curse of recent years, that the regular season champion does not consolidate it with the title, and the Greens, after a long wait, were proclaimed champions of the EuroLeague

In the regular phase Real Madrid clearly dominated, taking many games ahead of their immediate pursuers, Panathinaikos and Monaco. Barcelona and Olympiacos finished 4th and 5th, and Fenerbahce did not secure their place in the playoffs until the last matchday.

1. Real Madrid (27-7)
2. Panathinaikos (23-11)
3. AS Mónaco (23-11)
4. Barcelona (22-12)
5. Olympiacos (22-12)
6. Fenerbahce (20-14)
7. Maccabi (20-14)
8. Baskonia (18-16)
9. Anadolu Efes (17-17)
10. Virtus Bolonia (17-17)
11. Partizan (16-18)
12. Armani Milán (15-19)
13. Valencia Basket (14-20)
14. Zalgiris Kaunas (14-20)
15. Bayern Munich (13-21)
16. Estrella Roja (11-23)
17. ASVEL Villeurbanne (9-25)
18. ALBA Berlín (5-29)

For the first time, the EuroLeague introduced the play-in, in which the teams ranked 7th to 10th played for the last two playoff spots. Maccabi clearly beat Baskonia (89-77) for the seventh place, and Virtus Bologna beat Anadolu Efes (64-67) to fight for the last place. An eighth place went to Baskonia after beating the Bolognese by (89-77).

The playoffs were very close, except for Real Madrid vs Baskonia (3-0), and the crossings also had historical overtones as two teams were able to win the fifth and final game as visitors, a circumstance that had never happened before, with Olympiacos beating Barcelona (2-3) and Fenerbahce beating Monaco (2-3). Panathinaikos completed the final four by beating Maccabi (3-2).

Real Madrid started the series against Baskonia by securing its first two home games in a solvent manner. It was then able to withstand the pressure at the Buesa Arena in Vitoria, where it closed the tie in emphatic fashion.

Real Madrid

(90-74); (101-90); (98-102)

Baskonia Basket

Maccabi had the upper hand in the tie, winning the first game on Greek soil and then placing the series with a (1-2) after a head-to-head, which put Panathinaikos on the ropes. Faced with this extreme situation, the Greens reacted at the right time to win the 4th game in Belgrade, as Maccabi was playing on neutral ground due to war issues, and the fifth and final game in front of their fans.


(87-91); (95-79); (85-83); (88-95); (81-72)


Monaco wanted to repeat the feat of returning to the Final Four, but came up against a Fenerbahce side that handled the pressure better in key matches. The Turks were always one step ahead in the series after winning two games in the principality, including the fifth and final match, a first in the competition so far.

AS Monaco

(91-95); (93-88); (89-78); (62-65); (79-80)


Olympiacos always remained very competitive against a Barcelona team that was not comfortable in the series. Thus the Greeks were able to win the first and the last game of the tie, both in Barcelona, and thus be able to play a new final four.

FC Barcelona

(75-77); (77-69); (80-82); (92-58); (59-63)


After the playoffs came the long-awaited Final Four, which this year was held, as in 2016, in the German capital of Berlin. Of the four teams, two, Real Madrid and Olympiacos, repeated F4, both would go from playing for the 2023 title to face each other in the semifinals, and Fenerbahce and Panathinaikos returned to the crucial tournament, the latter after a twelve-year drought.

Euroleague - Media Center

In the first semifinal, Panathinaikos was superior to Fenerbahce at all times. The Greeks faced the game with greater guarantees, and even more so when they were clearly on the scoreboard in the final stretch of the game. The Turkish coach, Saras Jasikevicius, once again left empty-handed in his sixth F4, after being unable to reach even 60 points scored.


Panathinaikos 73
*Nunn – 14p, 4r, 3a
*Grant – 13p, 2r, 2a
*Papapetrou – 9p, 2r, 2a
*Lessort – 17p, 10r, 2br
*Mitoglou – 2p, 4r, 2br
Sloukas – 4p, 3a, 2r
Kalaitzakis – 5p, 4r
Grigonis – 6p, 3a, 1r
Hernángomez – 3p, 1r, 1br
Antetokounmpo – 0p, 2r, 1t


Fenerbahce 57
*Calathes – 5p, 9r, 4a
*Wilbekin – 2p, 2r, 2a
*Pierre – 0p
*Hayes-Davis – 14p, 4r, 2a
*Motley – 0p, 1r
Dorsey – 2p, 1r, 1a
Guduric – 10p, 2r, 2a
Biberovic – 4p, 2r, 2a
Sestina – 10p, 2r
Sanli – 7p, 2r, 1a
Papagiannis – 3p, 1r

In the other semifinal, Real Madrid dominated at all times. A great first half allowed them to take advantages of around twenty points. After the break, Olympiacos reduced their advantage in their attempt to get into the game, but the victory always had a clear white color.

Real Madrid

Real Madrid 87
*Campazzo – 3p, 9a, 5r
*Musa – 20p, 3r, 2a
*Hezonja – 12p, 6r, 2br
*Ndiaye – 0p, 1r
*Tavares – 9p, 4r, 3t
Rodríguez – 8p, 4a, 3r
Llull – 9p, 3a, 1r
Causeur – 4p, 1r, 1t
Yabusele – 11p, 2r, 1br
Poirier – 11p, 3r, 1t
Fernández – 0p, 1r, 1a
Abalde – 0p


Olympiacos 76
*Walkup – 4p, 5a, 3r
*Canaan – 7p, 1a
*Papanikolaou – 3p, 3r
*Peters – 23p, 10r, 1a
*Fall – 2p, 6r, 2a
Williams-Goss – 15p, 4r, 4br
McKissic – 17p, 4r, 3br
Petrusev – 5p, 1r
Wright – 0p
Milutinov – 0p, 2a

Panathinaikos, with Ergin Ataman on the bench, became European champions again thirteen years later. Madrid was Madrid only for half a game. Then they paid for a collapse in attack from which they were unable to escape. Chus Mateo tried everything and everyone, but the white team was only able to score 23 points in the last two quarters when in the first one they had shot up to 36. The 3/20 in three-pointers was the Whites’ tomb. Panathinaikos deservedly won its seventh title (1996, 2000, 2002, 2007, 2009, 2011 and 2024) with Sloukas, MVP of the final, at the helm.

Chus Mateo doubled the bet from the semifinals. Ndiaye returned to the starting lineup. His response? The 19 year-old junior scored 8 points in a couple of minutes, including two three-pointers. He was the breakthrough of the avalanche that Madrid became in the first quarter. The two fouls committed by Tavares at the beginning of the final did not stop a team that appeared unleashed. The difference with the semifinal is that they faced a team with a lot of dynamite in attack.

That’s why the Greeks came out of the first round alive. Any other opponent would have ended up on the canvas because of the accuracy Madrid showed. 36 points conceded by Panathinaikos, the highest amount received in a quarter all season, came at the worst moment. Chus Mateo was very clear that Nunn’s defense had to be attacked. Musa did it and the plan worked to perfection. The Bosnian scored and the American shooting guard was charged with three fouls. The dynamic with which the final started continued until the start of the second quarter when Madrid offered dizzying numbers: over 70 percent in two-point shots, close to 70 percent in three-pointers and 90 percent in free throws. That’s why the lead reached 14 points (41-27) when all the “old men” were on the court.

Ataman resorted to the secondary players, including Juancho Hernangómez and Vildoza. Two guys he has verbally beaten very badly. Their presence, along with Grant, strengthened the Greek quintet at the back. And the final took a turn. The Greeks put themselves in the hands of Lessort and Sloukas, two of their three decisive pieces. The center began to do damage in attack. Poirier answered, but in the Madrid zone he did not command as in other evenings. The point guard took on scoring responsibilities and the difference was soon on the verge of extinction (46-45). Madrid had softened in defense after some outstanding minutes led by Rudy in the back. To their credit, they were able to pull themselves together after the first Greek onslaught. A three-pointer by Musa and another by Campazzo aborted the initial attempt by the Athenians.

The outside success did not continue in the third quarter. Madrid started to miss, Tavares and Campazzo committed their third foul and the Greeks continued to score with some regularity. On the second attempt, Panathinaikos did take command (56-58). The game entered a chaotic trance that, in the end, benefited Madrid. Every three-point shot (0/9 in this period) was a guarantee of error. It was necessary to rearm at the back because the collapse in attack was monumental. Madrid was down by seven points in the third quarter, the worst record of the season. Without attack, the work in the back made it possible to patch up a disaster that was evident with a 3/15 in shooting. Even with that, the team had not fallen apart before the decisive stretch (61-64).

But Madrid still could not find the fluency with which it appeared in the final. With Sergio Rodríguez at the controls, the team was not flowing either. A three-pointer by Mitoglou and a basket by Grant set off all the alarms (65-73). Chus Mateo gave Campazzo the leadership and bet on placing the team in a 2-3 zone, a defense of a lifetime. Panathinaikos put itself in the hands of Sloukas. The point guard nailed two three-pointers to dismantle the zone that, at first, had baffled the Greeks. Sloukas was answered by Llull. His emergence after eleven straight misses from the three-point line put Madrid back in the final (76-79). Nunn, with his four fouls, took over from Sloukas and the final began to slip away. Because Panathinaikos began to add up almost all the pieces and the Whites had to pay for an offensive debacle impossible to bear in a Euroleague final. There was no Twelfth, but Panathinaikos’ Seventh.


Panathinaikos 95
*Nunn – 21p, 3r, 3a
*Grant – 11p, 6r, 5a
*Papapetrou – 4p, 1r
*Lessort – 17p, 6r, 1a
*Mitoglou – 8p, 3r
Sloukas – 24p, 3a, 2r
Vildoza – 3p, 1r
Grigonis – 0p, 1r
Hernangómez – 5p, 4r, 1a
Antetokounmpo – 0p
Kalaitzakis – 2p, 2r
Balcerowski –

Real Madrid

Real Madrid 80
*Campazzo – 12p, 4a, 2r
*Musa – 15p, 5r, 4a
*Hezonja – 8p, 8r, 2a
*Ndiaye – 8p, 1r
*Tavares – 4p, 4r, 1t
Rodríguez – 11p, 2r, 2a
Llull – 6p, 1a
Fernández – 0p, 3br, 1a
Yabusele – 6p, 1r
Poirier – 8p, 4r, 2a
Causeur – 2p
Abalde –