Zenit St Petersburg’s first full Turkish Airlines EuroLeague campaign was a memorable one as the club made history by reaching the EuroLeague Playoffs and becoming the first eighth-seeded team to take the best-of-five series to a maximum five games.
Overshadowed in all the drama was the fact that Zenit did so with some historic three-point help from one of its players. As the team compiled a 20-14 regular-season record before bowing out in the playoffs against eventual runner-up FC Barcelona, Zenit sharpshooter Billy Baron was in the process of making at least one three-point shot in 29 straight games.
That was the longest single-season streak of consecutive games with at least 1 three-point made in league history. Baron did so by hitting at least 1 triple in the last 24 regular-season games and then in each of the five playoff games.
Baron opened the season by hitting at least 1 shot from behind the arc in just six of the first 10 games before going on his historic run. His streak started in Round 13 with 1-for-5 shooting in a road loss against Real Madrid and then continued in the next round by going 4-for-5 in a win over FC Bayern Munich.
Baron proceeded to knock down multiple threes in 20 of those 29 games to finish the season, including a stretch of the final six regular-season games in which Zenit was making a playoff push; Baron shot 20 of 32 (62.5%) from downtown during that span.
The streak also means Baron enters the 2021-22 season 10 games shy of tying the all-time streak of making a triple in 39 consecutive appearances, a record currently held by two players.
The first one to do it was Marko Popovic, who started his streak in the 2006-07 season, continued it in 2007-08 and then returned to the EuroLeague in 2011-12 and finished his streak in the 2012-13 campaign. He played all of those games in a Zalgiris Kaunas uniform.
Alexey Shved matched that streak with Khimki Moscow Region over the span of three seasons. Shved’s three-point streak started with him making a triple in each of the last 20 games of the 2017-18 season. Then he made at least one triple in each of his 14 appearances in 2018-19 before continuing his streak in the first five games of the 2019-20 campaign.
Baron’s current streak is the sixth-longest in the EuroLeague this century and if he opens the next season by making at least one three-pointer in each of his first two games, he will join the top five. If he makes a triple in his first 11 appearances next season, Baron will make EuroLeague history, again.