Crvena zvezda will host Fenerbahce in game that could turn out to be the most interesting in this 17th round of Euroleague.The Serbian team is on fire lately, they have won four of the last five games including games at home vs Real Madrid and CSKA Moscow. Overall, they are 8-8 so far and to be honest, even I as their fan was surprised with such record. Do not forget that Crvena zvezda started this season without two best players from season ago, Maik Zirbes and Quincy Miller who both joined Maccabi. But even with partially changed roster, Crvena zvezda played above all expectation. Not to mention 17-0 in ABA league.
But bookmakers for entire season so far seems as they did not have too much confidence in this team. CZ have been heavily underrated by the offered odds and spreads. If I remember well, Crvena zvezda only few times was favorite, every time at home, vs Baskonia, vs Zalgiris (both defeats) and vs Maccabi (won and covered). On the the other side, this team 13 times was underdog, many times heavy underdog. But they have won 7 of those 13 and covered in even 10 of 13 as underdogs. Overall so far, Crvena zvezda is 11-5 against the spread. With such numbers, Serbian team from the betting angle so far was one of the most profitable in Euroleague. Not to talk how profitable this team was in betting on Money Line option - with several victories on really huge odds.
So, logical question is why then bet against Crvena zvezda? Well, because finally we have situation that this team is overrated with the offered odds. Seems like bookmakers finally figured out CZ is not a joke and for the first time they are not underrated. What more, I have impression bookmakers overreacted after wins over Real and CSKA and now we have such odds against Crvena zvezda that should not be missed.
The handicap line in most of the bookies is set on 2.5, Pinnacle offers 1.91 for Fenerbache to cover this short line. And IMO this is great value, my real bet is on visiting team -2.5 AH at Pinnacle. Here I will use this Money Line option cause Betway stepped up with 1.80 Money Line odds.
Fenerbahce without doubt together with CSKA Moscow and Real Madrid is the greatest favorite to win Euroleague in this season. Given on fact, the Final 4 tournament will be held in Istanbul, Turkish team is maybe the first favorite this season. But so far they have not been exactly on expected level. We all expected to see better from this current 10-6 overall record for Feenrbahce. But there was good reason for slightly weaker score than expected. Those are numerous injury problems Fenerbahce had so far. Still, now they are free of such problems and for the first time head coach Željko Obradović will have full roster available. This is of course big plus for this bet. Even Bogdan Bogdanović who is probably their best shooter was back in the roster in previous game away at Besiktas in Turkish league (76:79 Fenerbahce win).
Currently Fenerbahce is on 5th position in Euroleague but with only one victory far from places which guarantee the home court advantage in Quarter finals playoffs. This is definitely the first aim of Fenerbahce, to secure home court advantage cause it would be very risky to enter the playoffs below 4th position. In such case Fener could easily be in danger not to qualify for the Final 4 in season when they are the hosts of it. I'm pretty sure now when Fenerbahce is with complete roster, we will see much better results for them in rest of the regular season.
H2H score is also something we should mention here. Fenerbahce never lost single game from Crvena zvezda although this is already third season for Serbian team in Euroleague. Every time it was pretty comfortable win for Turkish team. Crvena zvezda is now 0:6 against Fenerbahce and even in one friendly meeting, CZ was not quite competitive. This all is not without reason. Namely, seems like Fenerbahce is always highly motivated when play this opponent, I would say more motivated than when they meet some other opponents of the same level. Željko Obradović always motivates to the maximum his players when play CZ. This time wont be different. Even earlier in the season when they met for the first time in 2016/17, when Fenerbahce was not in too good form, it was more or less easy +15 points victory of the Turkish side (87-72) and with double digits advantage already at half time.
I've tried to be realistic and to take all the facts, and it seems to me that the visiting team is the right choice. I think we can cash out with Fenerbahce.