Loko stopped CSKA in Krasnodar! After the brawl, the judges sent off two army players

Marat Araslanov

Marat Araslanov

Loko stopped CSKA in Krasnodar!

Lokomotiv Kuban really wanted to return the intrigue to the series with CSKA. And he did it!

CSKA picked up two home matches against Loko and went to Krasnodar with clear goals. A trip to the capital of the Kuban is now a whole quest, and the army team talked about this in a special video. The team of Dimitris Itoudis flew to Stavropol, where they boarded a bus and spent about 6 more hours on the way. The coach himself admitted that such long trips are a forgotten “pleasure”. In total, the defending champions were on the road for almost 12 hours. It is worth saying that the railroad workers traveled to the house in exactly the same route.

Rights belong to PBC CSKA.

Both Moscow matches developed according to the same scenario. Like a carbon copy. The opponents spent equal first half, as if warming up, and after a long break, CSKA came off in the long run. And if in match No. 1 the guests were able to recoup and were as close as possible to victory, then in match No. 2 the chase did not work – the capital’s team activated Alleric Freeman. The American, who did not take to the floor in the first game, shot 20 points, and the railroad workers were definitely not ready for this.

Loko in Moscow: a fine of 100 thousand and two defeats.  CSKA is one step away from the VTB League final
Loko in Moscow: a fine of 100 thousand and two defeats. CSKA is one step away from the VTB League final

The beginning of the match turned out to be equal again. CSKA set the pace, and the guests stayed close. Jaylen Burford scored three at 4:4, and Alexey Shved immediately answered him. But then came Jonathan Motley’s time. Center Loko scored 5 points in a row, and in just the first six minutes, he scored 7 out of 12 team points.

Krasnodar’s Basket Hall, which is almost full, seems to have recharged its team, which has received technical fouls too often. In less than a quarter and a half, the referees discharged four (!) “techies”. But these violations definitely did not break the owners mentally. On the contrary, Loko’s attack at the beginning of the second quarter produced a 9:1 breakthrough, which forced Dimitris Itoudis to take a timeout.

All tickets for the third match in Krasnodar were sold out

All tickets for the third match in Krasnodar were sold out

Photo: Fedor Obmaikin, Lokomotiv Kuban

Already in the middle of the second ten-minute period, Vladislav Yemchenko scored a “three” and increased Krasnodar’s advantage to 10 points – 39:29. The defending champion responded to this with a 7:2 jerk. The main driving force of the Muscovites was Semyon Antonov. The forward gave aggression, emotion, defense, and his 4 points became the basis for CSKA’s return to the game.

For a single second quarter, the hosts scored 33 points, going to a long break as leaders – 54:49. Surprisingly, Motley scored 25 points out of 54 for Loko. The center converted all of his 9 field goals (including two three-pointers) and came close to a personal record in the VTB League, which he set in November 2021 in the game with Enisey.

Jonathan Motley vs. Semyon Antonov

Jonathan Motley vs. Semyon Antonov

Photo: Fedor Obmaikin, Lokomotiv Kuban

Throughout the third quarter, Motley could not score the ball and scored points already in the fourth quarter. True, his partners were able to maintain leadership. Alexander Shcherbenev, who realized only one long-range shot out of nine attempts in the first two matches, began to hit just in time from behind the arc.

In the middle of the fourth quarter, the army team still managed to get close to the opponent – 77:78 for them after being hit by Casper Weir from under the basket. True, the railroad responded with four consecutive points scored by Shcherbenev and Motley. The last hit from under the rings brought a personal sniper record, but it was clearly far from last year’s figures. In South Korea, a year ago, Motley somehow shot 48.

Lokomotiv, together with the almost full Basket Hall, fought off the attacks of the army all the last minutes, which stretched out for almost half an hour of universal time. Emotions had to spill out somewhere, and this moment came three seconds before the end of the match. The victory of the hosts was no longer in doubt, and Burford decided to run into the gap and score. This did not please Semyon Antonov, who stopped the passage at the cost of a personal foul. As a result, a skirmish ensued, to which all the basketball players who were on the floor joined … and even those who were on the bench at that time.

The arbitrators watched the moment for a long time, passing a disappointing verdict for Nikita Kurbanov and Nikola Milutinov. Both CSKA players were given disqualifying fouls, Antonov and Burford were given unsportsmanlike fouls.

“You don’t need to make some kind of UFC out of this or something like that. The opponent just went to score, I went to stop him. There is nothing like that. After the match, we shook hands, and that’s it. All players understand that emotions are part of the game. Nobody wants to lose. Therefore, everything is fine, ”Semyon Antonov said after the match.

VTB United League. 1/2 finals

May 10, 2022, Tuesday. 14:00 Moscow time


Krasnodar, Russia


Moscow, Russia

Lokomotiv-Kuban: Motley – 33, Burford – 14, McCollum – 12, Shcherbenev – 11, Emchenko – 7, Martyuk – 7, Ilnitsky – 6, Vedishchev – 2, Paunich – 2, Dolinin, Kalinov, Sychkov

CSKA: Clyburn – 19, Ware – 15, Swede – 15, Antonov – 14, Milutinov – 11, Yerebko – 5, Kurbanov – 2, Freeman – 1, Kolesnikov, Ukhov, Khalturin, Khomenko

The removal of the leaders of CSKA did not affect the outcome of the third match. And the next one is unlikely to have a direct impact. Most likely, Kurbanov and Milutinov will take part in match number 4. One way or another, Lokomotiv extends the series and writes history with its own hands. For the second time in the history of the VTB United League, at least 4 matches will be played in both semi-finals. For the first time this happened in 2013, when CSKA won the series with Khimki 3:2, and Loko beat Zalgiris 3:1.


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