Just 1 point... 03novemberJust 1 point...

Today, the capital basketball players held their fourth match of VTB United League. BC Astana played away with the champion of Ukraine - BC...

Ukraine meets BC Astana 02novemberUkraine meets BC Astana

Tomorrow, on November 3rd, the capital basketball players will play on away their 4th match in the VTB United League. This time the BC Astana will play in...

2:0 in BC Astana's favor 30october2:0 in BC Astana's favor

Today, the series of Kazakhstan basketball championship games between the capital club Astana and BC Barsy Atyrau has ended in Astana. The capital basketball...


Point guard of BC Astana Jerry Johnson is the best player in the third round of VTB United League. The honorary title of point guard of BC Astana goes not only...

Hard victory of BC Astana 27octoberHard victory of BC Astana

Today, the capital of Kazakhstan hosted the third round of the VTB United League, in which BC Astana played with BC Krasnie Krylia from Samara,...

Johnson collected 18 points and nine assists
Astana (Kazakhstan) took care of business at home, defeating Tsmoki-Minsk (Belarus), 99-82, in Week 15 of the regular season. The Yellow and Blue used solid defense in the first quarter to pull ahead. A quick 12-3 run early in the third quarter, meanwhile, helped Astana stretch its lead to 19 points and knock Tsmoki out of the game for good. The win bumps Astana to 4th place in Group B, improving its chances of making the playoffs.
Both teams got off to a strong start in the regular season, before midseason slumps damaged their chances of making the playoffs. But while Astana, led by new head coach Aleksandar Trifunovich, has rebounded, the Belarusians entered the match-up in Kazakhstan on a seven-game losing streak.
Trifunovich said before the game that his team would emphasize defense. He wasn’t lying. Astana blocked off the paint nicely with Tsmoki-Minsk forced to operate out on the perimeter. About midway through the first period, the home team broke through. The turning point came after a timeout by the Dragons. Coming out of the break, the Belarusians were unable to handle Astana’s defensive pressure and committed a rare backcourt violation. While Astana had been relying mostly on Pat Calathes’s dribble penetration and David Simon’s presence under the basket, now the team began to play as a cohesive unit. The Kazakh lead began to grow, reaching double digits at the end of the period, 27-16.
Astana kept up its defensive intensity in the second quarter. The visitors had some success on the offensive glass, but that was about it. The Kazakhs continued to shine on offense, led by Olaseni Lawal off the bench. But, despite dominating most of the period, Astana allowed a brief 5-0 run from the visitors (Pavel Ulyanko and Aliaksei Lashkevich did the damage) at the end of the half, which cut the lead to 10 points, 50-40.
Turning Point
After halftime, Astana’s lead quickly doubled. Simon and Janis Blums led the way, stretching the advantage to 62-43 with 6:46 to play in the period. Tsmoki-Minsk’s only hope was for an Astana letdown, but the home fans and coach Trifunovich wouldn’t have it. The 99-82 win over fellow playoff hopefuls greatly improves the club’s odds of making the postseason.
Star of the Game
Jerry Johnson. After missing the game against Khimki, Johnson made an impressive return, putting up 18 points, combined with nine assists.
Stat of the Game
98 – number of days since Tsmoki-Minsk last won in the regular season. The Belarusians picked up a win on November 17, 2013, coincidentally against Astana, but have now lost eight straight.
Top Performers
Astana: Jerry Johnson – 18 points, nine assists; Janis Blums – 18 points; David Simon – 14 points, seven rebounds; Olaseni Lawal – 12 points, eight rebounds; Patrick Calathes – 11 points, seven rebounds; Branko Cvetcovic – 11 points.
Tsmoki-Minsk: Keith Benson – 16 points; Branko Mirkovic – 11 points, seven assists; Tyrone Brazelton – 11 points; Vitali Liutych – 10 points, six assists; Pavel Ulyanko – 10 points; Aliaksei Trastsinetski – nine points, five rebounds.
Photo of the Game