Before the Euroleague home game
Sun, 24/04/22, 13:53
Hamburg, Barça and Barça again: FCBB first challenged in the BBL
The FCBB had just returned from a short week in Spain and are already on the road again: Coach Andrea Trinchieri's team has been in Hamburg since Saturday evening, and the 30th Bundesliga gameday for the Munich team brings the difficult away game at the seventh-placed team in the standings on Sunday (24.4., 18:00/MagentaSport). The hosts (34-26 points record) need every win in the fight for playoff qualification, while the currently third-placed Bavarians (44-14) may understandably also have the continuation of the EuroLeague quarterfinals next week against FC Barcelona in the back of their minds while striving for a good starting position in the BBL.
With home games against Würzburg (May 1), Goettingen (May 8) and second-place Berlin (May 10), as well as the last away game in Ulm (May 6), the Munich team have it in their own hands from which starting spot they will enter the BBL postseason. On the other hand, a big week of two home games against the title favorites awaits after Thursday's much-appreciated away win to even the series at 1-1 (90-75) in the playoff spectacle against Barça: Game three takes place on Wednesday at 20:30, Game four on Friday from 20:45.
A feat of strength and emotions galore in the first matchup
Managing this balancing act will not be easy in Hamburg. Especially since the hosts will be completely focused on the league after this week's elimination in the EuroCup quarterfinals at title candidate Valencia (98-80). The Towers are expecting a sell-out crowd (3,400 spectators) for the first time in two years and already gave the Bavarians a headache in the first matchup: the score was 46-28 for Hamburg at the break before the FCBB managed to win 86-75.
However, this gameday was unrestrainedly overloaded with emotions: First, both teams documented the desire for an end to the war with joint T-shirts and a banner a few days after the Russian attack on Ukraine, before Paul Zipser made a brief comeback after his brain surgery and finally Nick Weiler-Babb suffered a severe concussion.
Two months later, the focus will hopefully be on a sporting duel, with the guests having to control guards Caleb Homesley (16.1 ppg) and Jaylon Brown (15.4), who already stood out in the first matchup. Center Maik Kotsar (13.9) will also be the focus of Munich's defense against a team that is the fourth-best rebounding unit in the BBL (36.8 rpg) and can count on the Estonian in particular: The 25-year-old is currently number one in this category with 7.1 rebounds per game.