Panathinaikos OPAP Athens overcame a slow start to defeat Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade 87-82 at OAKA on Thursday. The visiting team was ahead for the entire first quarter, but Panathinaikos soon hit its stride and produced a high-scoring third quarter to take the lead for good, establishing a big enough margin to withstand a fourth-quarter fightback from Zvezda. Nick Calathes led his team’s efforts by pairing 21 points with 7 assists, and there was an outstanding effort from DeShaun Thomas with a double-double of 18 points and 11 rebounds. New signings Tyrese Rice (12) and Jimmer Fredette (11) also reached double figures in points. Zvezda debutant James Gist led all scorers against his former team, registering 22 points and 7 rebounds. Billy Baron and Stratos Perperoglou, another ex-Panathinaikos man, both added 15 points in defeat.