Bayern Basketball win in a thriller
The basketball players of FC Bayern Munich win in a big upset over standings leader, Fenerbahce Istanbul in an epic double-overtime game, 90-86. The huge victory is their eleventh in this premier basketball league. In the sold-out Audi Dome, the Munich team was toe to toe right from the start and forced Istanbul into extra time twice with great determination and an extraordinary team performance. In the last five minutes the favourite did not have enough to counter the Bayern's will to win. Danilo Barthel made his mark on the final overtime and scored six of the ten Bayern points to propel the team to one of the biggest wins in their history. Derrick Williams and Stefan Jovic were the top scorers for Bayern with 19 points each.
Less than 48 hours after the thriller against Fenerbahce, the Bavarians will again play in the Audi Dome: On the 18th gameday of the BBL, they will play Jena on Saturday (2.2., 20:30).
Points per quarter Bayern - Istanbul: 20-21, 9-13, 23-18, 14-14, 14-14, 10-6.
FCBB Stats: Derrick Williams (19 points), Stefan Jovic (19/4 threes), Danilo Barthel (14/7 rebounds), Nemanja Dangubic (11), Vladimir Lucic (9), Nihad Djedovic (7), Petteri Koponen (4), Leon Radosevic (4), Braydon Hobbs (3), Robin Amaize, Marvin Ogunsipe and Alex King (dnp).
FCBB head coach, Dejan Radonjic: "Congratulations to my players, they fought incredibly. In the first half we played very well on defense, on offense we scored better in the second half. In the last overtime we played smart like you have to play against a team like Fenerbahce. It's a big success for us because we managed to play with a lot of energy in overtime. That was certainly our best defensive performance ever."
Fenerbahce head coach, Zeljko Obradovic: "It was a difficult game for both teams. Congratulations to Bayern. Today luck was on their side - luck or something else. Both teams fought from the first to the last second."
Danilo Barthel: "Awesome. It was such a tight game with two overtimes. Twice we had the chance to decide that game and in the end we made it. We are very happy. The decisive thing was how we fought all the time as a team, that was incredible and the key.
Stefan Jovic, Nihad Djedovic, Vladimir Lucic, Danilo Barthel and Leon Radosevic were the starting line-up for FCBB coach, Dejan Radonjic. Bayern suffered two turnovers right at the start, and the Turks took advantage of the mistakes immediately. Stefan Jovic scored the first points for the home team with a three to bring the team within one early. Braydon Hobbs came on the floor and promptly delivered the creative and cheeky element: With the first touch of the ball he pulled the trigger and drilled a three to take the first lead of the night for the Germans at 10-8. The visitors used even the smallest mistakes of the German champion mercilessly, but Derrick Williams made his mark on offense and kept things neck-and-neck with the standings leader. A huge dunk by Stefan Jovic and another by Nemanja Dangubic not only gave the game a spectacular note, but also contributed to the fact that Bayern was right on the heels of Istanbul heading to the second quarter, 21-20.
Derrick Williams started the quarter with a nice, effort tip-in after a missed shot by Jovic. Istanbul coach legend Zeljko Obradovic took a time-out after five minutes in the second quarter which was a good sign for the Bayern fans and a reaction to the 26-23 lead for FCBB. Just a minute later, after a bucket by former Bamberger Nicolo Melli, Bayern coach Radonjic took a time-out as the Turks turned the tide with a 5-0 run and a 28-26 lead. The Munich squad was struggling mightily from deep and by the half had made only two of the thirteen attempts from beyond the arc. Fenerbahce found the bottom of the basket a few more times for a 34-29 lead at half.
The beginning of the third quarter did not go well for Bayern and they fell behind 38-30 before Stefan Jovic countered with a big-time three-pointer. This bucket was the initial spark for a thrilling sprint by Bayern and they defended more intensively which aided in an 11-2 run and forced an Instanbul time-out. The German champs played on an equal footing with the leaders of the top European league, as evidenced by the fact that the lead changed several times during this phase. Nemanja Dangubic's shot from deep brought the Dome to a fever pitch but Istanbul's Luigi Datome also responded immediately with the three of his own. After the third quarter, the score was even at 52-52.
In view of the numerous Turkish fans, there was an exhilarating EuroLeague atmosphere in the Audi Dome, where every play was met with a deafening uproar. Unfortunately, the Bavarians missed a great chance to score in the form of free throws and ball losses shortly before crunchtime, and Melih Mahmutoglu's three hurt badly and gave Istanbul a 64-61 lead. A monster dunk by Derrick Williams 88 seconds before the end shortened the gap to 64-63 and the hope for an upset was back within sight. With 32 seconds on the clock Nihad Djedovic was fouled on the way to the basket, he then drilled the free throws were sitting and took a 65-64 lead for Bayern. Istanbul was looking for an open shot but the strong German defense caused a missed shot with 18 seconds on the clock. Nemanja Dangubic hit only one of his free-throws and with 12 seconds left, Kostas Sloukas drilled a shot to send the game to overtime.
The game was definitely not to be surpassed in drama, the lead changed with every possession and the shooting percentage of both teams was sensationally high. 65 seconds before the end Stefan Jovic hit yet another huge three to take a 77-76 lead, but again it was Luigi Datome who immediately hit back with a trio with 50 seconds left. After failed attempts by Bayern and Istanbul there were only a few seconds left on the clock, Lucic sank a three to take the lead again, 80-79. In the last desperate action Joffrey Lovergne was fouled, but from the two free throws he hit only one to the relief of the Bavarian fans.
The Reds got the better start in the next added time and with a hook-shot by Barthel and a three by Dangubic the lead was quickly up to 85-80. The extremely focused guests lweren't done yet though and in a blink of the eye were back within one. Danilo Barthel came up big once again and scored to take a 90-86 lead with one minute to play. Fenerbahce tried everything to get the road victory, but the Bayern stronghold stood and secured the sensation against the leader of the EuroLeague.
(Photo-Credit: Rauchensteiner, Albertini (EuroLeague), Eirich & Stickel)