With assistant GM Trajan Langdon in the stands watching, Timofey Mozgov went for another double-double Thursday as Russia beat Great Britain, 82-70, to advance to the next round in FIBA Eurobasket.
Mozgov scored 11 points on 4-of-10 shooting (the most shots he’s taken in five games), and grabbed 10 rebounds, six of them offensive, in 26 minutes. He also had two steals and three turnovers. Alexey Shved who shot poorly vs. Latvia, hit 6-of-9 from three and scored 30 points in 32 minutes.
Russia dominated early and never fell behind, although the Brits got within six late. Russia, now 4-1, advances to the Round of 16.
After the game, Russian coach Sergey Bazarevich said the early start may have affected Mozgov’s energy.
"It's like Timo is not good playing early,” he said during the post-game press conference, as reported by TASS Andrey Kartahov. “But he made some stupid plays. And like he was too slow, with no energy".
Langdon, in Istanbul primarily to watch Mozgov, didn’t comment on his team’s new center. Russia plays again on the weekend.