Giannis Antetokounmpo of Greece and Luka Doncic were the two players whose chances of breaking the EuroBasket scoring record were discussed on Tuesday.
Doncic chose Antetokounmpo without delay.
He might have contradicted himself a day later.
Doncic led Slovenia past France 88-82 on Wednesday to earn the top seed out of Group B moving into this weekend’s opening of the knockout phase. Doncic’s 47 points were the second-most by anyone in the history of the European championships.
Rudy Gobert, one of the best defenders in the world and a centre for France, said of Luka: “Luka, obviously, is a fantastic player.”
Doncic scored 27 of Slovenia’s first 36 points, connected on 15 of his 23 field goal attempts, and finished with a team-high seven rebounds and five assists.
Eddy Terrace scored 63 points for Belgium in a 1957 match against Albania. The previous second-best performance in the EuroBasket was 46 by Greece’s Nikos Galis versus Sweden in 1983; it was the only time someone had more points than Doncic had on Wednesday.
As of Wednesday, Antetokounmpo’s 41 points against Ukraine were the most in this year’s EuroBasket. It’s the first time since 1987 that two players have had games with 40 or more points in the same EuroBasket tournament thanks to Antetokounmpo and Doncic.
With 1:20 left, Goran Dragic broke the tie and gave Slovenia (4-1) the lead permanently. Slovenia was getting some revenge after losing to France in the Olympic semifinals at the Tokyo Games last year.
Aleksander Sekulic, the Slovenian coach, remarked, “Luka had a great night.” “He spoils us so much. We think this is normal. This is not normal.”
Serbia had 14 from Dragic. Gobert scored 19 points for France (3-2), which also had contributions from Evan Fournier (15), Amath M’Baye (13), Elie Okobo (11) and Thomas Heurtel (10 points, 10 rebounds).
The last round of group play got underway on Wednesday. The competition is divided into four groups of six teams each, and the top four clubs from each group advance to Berlin for the knockout stage, which begins on Saturday.
Bosnia and Herzegovina 70, Lithuania 87
In EuroBasket, Lithuania will advance to the knockout round.
Jonas Valanciunas finished with 13 points and 15 rebounds, and Lithuania defeated Bosnia and Herzegovina in a game in which the winner advanced from Group B and into the round of 16. Marius Grigonis scored 16 points.
For Lithuania, who avoided another must-win game, Arnas Butkevicius and Ignas Brazdeikis each scored 13 points, and Domantas Sabonis added 12.
Bosnia and Herzegovina (2-3)’s Dzanan Musa led all scorers with 22 points, and Jusuf Nurkic scored 15.
Lithuania won thanks to a 30-10 run that spanned the second and third quarters (2-3). Before the run, which gave Lithuania a 62-42 lead early in the third quarter, the score was knotted at 32.
Hungary 71, Germany 106
Hungary was easily defeated by Germany (4-1) as Christian Sengfelder scored 22 points and Maodo Lo added 21 as they prepared for the trip from Cologne to Berlin (0-5).
In just 12 minutes, Germany’s Niels Giffey scored 19 points, Andreas Obst added 16, and Franz Wagner added 15.
Hungry’s Zoltan Perl topped all scorers with 15 points, followed by Szilard Benke with 13, Adam Somogyi with 11, and David Vojvoda with 10.
Turkey 69, Spain 72
With 2:11 remaining in Tbilisi, Georgia, Lorenzo Brown’s jumper gave Spain (4-1) the lead to maintain its lead against Turkey and win the group (3-2).
Willy Hernangomez scored 15 points to lead Spain, and Brown added 11. This coming weekend, Spain and Lithuania will play in the round of 16.
Turkey’s Cedi Osman finished with 20 points, while Furkan Korkmaz and Alperen Sengun each added 16 and 14. Turkey will also compete in the knockout round.
Belgium 89, Bulgaria 80
Retin Obasohan and Manu Lecomte each scored 25 points as Belgium (3-2) qualified for the group stage.
For Belgium, Maxime De Zeeuw scored 13 goals.
Dee Bost scored 18 points and Aleksandar Vezenkov added 26 for Bulgaria (1-4), which was eliminated.
Georgia 73, Montenegro 81
Igor Drobnjak scored 22 points and Kendrick Perry scored 17, helping Montenegro (3-2) defeat Georgia (1-4) to clinch the final qualifying spot out of Group A.
For Montenegro, Bojan Dubljevic tallied 10 points.
Thaddus McFadden led Georgia with 16 points, followed by Alexander Mamukelashvili with 15, Duda Sanadze with 14, and Giorgi Shermadini with 14.
Groups C and D’s 60-game group stage concludes with the first round of play.
Group C: Croatia (2-2) plays Ukraine (3-1), Estonia (1-3) plays Greece (4-0), and Britain (0-4) plays Italy. (2-2). All four teams are making their way to Berlin and the knockout stage: Croatia, Ukraine, Greece, and Italy. Greece may be one of just two teams, along with Serbia, with a chance to go undefeated in group play.
Group D: Israel (2-2) vs. Czech Republic (1-3), Serbia (4-0) vs. Poland (3-1), Finland (2-2) vs. the Netherlands (0-4). The Israel-Czech Republic winner will go to Berlin; the Serbia-Poland winner will win the group (both already have clinched knockout round spots); and Finland is also locked into the knockout round.
On Friday, there are no games.