Damir Mrsic delivered another clutch performance to fire Fenerbahce to a 101-91 home win over PAOK Thessaloniki in Tuesday's EuroCup Group E opener for both sides.
Fener, the hosts of last season's FIBA Europe League Final Four, got a game-high 35 points from Mrsic on his 35th birthday.
|At 35 years old Damir Mrsic is showing no signs of slowing down |
But PAOK fought back, going on a 12-2 run with Marijan Mance's three-pointer pulling the Greek team level at 67-67 early in the fourth quarter.
After Fener got their noses back in front at 71-68, Mrsic's contributions propelled the team to victory.
First, the Bosnia-Herzegovina point guard buried a shot from the arc for a 74-68 lead with 7:34 to play, and then Vasileios Xanthopoulos fouled Mrsic while the veteran was shooting a three-pointer.
He made all three free throws for a 77-68 advantage.
PAOK would get no closer than eight the rest of the way.
Mrsic was eight of 12 from behind the arc and made all seven of his free throws.
His performance must have inspired team-mate Kaspars Kambala, the Latvian star who was surpisingly cut from his national side before EuroBasket 2005.
Kambala also enjoyed a brilliant night with 27 points and 10 rebounds.
Greek international Konstantinos Vasileiadis led PAOK with a team-high 23 points.