Bayern to host the still undefeated title candidate Milan
Things didn't turn out perfectly at the very end, but the Bayern basketball team still left the Milan stage as winners at the beginning of May 2021. In the dramatic fifth playoff game (92-89), the underdogs missed the sensationial upset by a razor-thin margin after having made it to the quarterfinals of the EuroLeague for the first time. "However, head coach Andrea Trinchieri, the Milanese in the Munich squad, recently laughed in retrospect that it felt like 55 years ago. For at the reunion with Olimpia this Tuesday evening in the Audi Dome (Oct. 26, 20:45), his newly formed team is still in a phase of finding its feet, accompanied by major personnel problems.
The FCBB hope to gradually end this phase after their first win in their fifth game in Kaunas (75-73), although they will still be missing two key players in Leon Radosevic and Paul Zipser for a longer time. Either way facts for Tuesday remain the same: Olimpia Milan stands at 5-0 and remains the big favorite - the Final Four participant from Cologne (third place) is striving for the European crown in the third year of massive efforts. They are also the only team in Serie A without a defeat after five gamedays.
A star-studded ensemble with Hines, Melli, Rodriguez - and no less than three new guards with NBA experience
"Milan's is loaded with a lot of individual quality. They are very, very experienced and currently the best team in Europe," said coach Trinchieri. "They already reached the Final Four last season and are clearly one of the candidates for the title. For us, the main thing now is to bring consistency to our performance, even with such a tough task."
The experienced Milan team has remained largely unchanged and has been significantly strengthened, first and foremost by Nicolo Melli - the Italian ended his two-year NBA existence (New Orleans, Dallas) for the offer from Milan - and forward Konstantinos Mitoglou has also joined after Milan was able to poach the Greek international from his regular club Panathinaikos Athens. There are also three former NBA guards Jerian Grant, Troy Daniels (339 NBA games, 6.6 ppg, debuted last week after injury layoff) and Devon Hall (11.2 ppg), who is Olimpia's second-best shooter so far after a year in Bamberg.
„"Last season, Milan pushed us to our best basketball in every duel. We want to be competitive this time as well."”
In addition, four-time EuroLeague champion Kyle Hines (2012, 2013, 2016, 2019), world champion Sergio Rodriguez and top scorer Shavon Shields (13 ppg) were kept around as well as veteran Luigi Datome and playmaker Malcolm Delaney (10.2 ppg), who, however, is out.
Especially in terms of rebounding (34.8 to 27.6 rpg), the guests can control the Munich team. But co-captain Vladimir Lucic faces his home debut in the Audi Dome on Tuesday and could give a boost.
"Milan is a super team. We still want to take the next step," said FCBB guard Nick Weiler-Babb, who suffered a serious injury in the first playoff game. "Last season, Milan pushed us to our best basketball in every duel. We want to be competitive this time as well."