Defending champion Bayern loses in quarter-finals
The FC Bayern Munich basketball team lost 78-70 to Alba Berlin in the quarter-finals of the BBL Cup, missing their chance to defend their title after last year's cup victory. In the sold-out Audi Dome, 6,500 spectators witnessed how the Bavarians finally had to pay tribute to the efforts of the last few days: The FCBB took the lead several times against rested Berliners, a total of 18 lead changes testified to the crackling tension of the game. In the last minutes, however, the Capitals scored better and finished the game with a 9-0 run. Derrick Williams was the top scorer for Bayern with 15 points ahead of Petteri Koponen, who scored his 13 points before the break with 100% shooting. The FCBB lost the rebound due 42-28l and clearly miss Devin Booker.
Already on Wednesday, the second Christmas Day (26.12.), the home game marathon will continue with the BBL match against Würzburg (18:00 CET), before the last game of the calendar year will take place against Podgorica in the EuroLeague at the Audi Dome (Friday, 28.12., 20:00 CET), including a SIDO concert at "Music meets Basketball".
Points per quarter Bayern-Berlin: 24-21, 16-20, 15-20, 15-17.
FCBB Stats: Derrick Williams (15 points), Petteri Koponen (13/3 three), Maodo Lo (9), Nihad Djedovic (9), Vladimir Lucic (6), Danilo Barthel (6), Nemanja Dangubic (5), Leon Radosevic (4), Braydon Hobbs (3), Marvin Ogunsipe and Alex King.
FCBB head coach, Dejan Radonjic: "We made too many mistakes, forgot simple basketball and produced many unnecessary turnovers. Berlin played with a lot of energy and in the end hit the important shots. Congratulations to Berlin. I won't let the schedule be an excuse."
Alejandro Garcia Reneses, head coach of Berlin: "It's an important victory for us against Bayern. All games are difficult, especially the ones against Bayern. We played more consistently than last week".
Stefan Jovic, Nihad Djedovic, Vladimir Lucic, Danilo Barthel and Marvin Ogunsipe started the quarter-finals for the Bavarians and took an unusually long time to play as they are capable of. After more than two minutes Nihad Djedovic scored the first points for Munich, a three which took a 3-2 lead. Both teams struggled on offense but Berlin turned things up and went on an 8-0 run and forced FCBB coach Dejan Radonjic to take a time-out down 12-5. The discussion was a great relief for the fans in the sold arena and the team got back on track with a three from Maodo Lo to tie things at 14-14. The last minute belonged to Bayern who streaked to an 8-0 run thanks in large part to Derrick Williams. At the end of the first quarter the home team led 24-21.
Petteri Koponen didn't waste any time and after eleven seconds of the second period he sank his second three but the Berliners countered with a 7-0 run, which was only stopped by a Koponen jump shot to retake the lead at 29-28. The Finn was "on fire" in this quarter. He scored all ten points for FCBB up to the fifth minute and almost single-handedly took the 34-28 lead. The opponents remained neck and neck and managed to pick up the pace. The resulting tension with frequent lead changes was an early Christmas present from both teams to their fans. Bayern was starting to fade to the visitory when a Braydon Hobbs hit a huge three-pointer that closed the gap as the home team trailed 41-40 at the half.
Both teams started the second half quite distracted, the Bavarians needed two minutes before they scored their first bucket. The defense for the Munich squad worked quite well, however, so the team from Berlin couldn't do anything on offense either. Derrick Williams stole the ball, stormed to the basket and completed the free throws leading to a 46-46 tie with five minutes to play in the third quarter.. A Lucic dunk from a fastbreak got the fans up from their seats but Bayern was still down by two. Derrick Williams was doubled and found the free man and Maodo Lo sunk the three-pointer to tie things at 51-51. Williams finally brought his team into the lead with two free throws but Berlin immediately countered with a 7-0 run and forced a time-out from Bayern. At the end of the third quarter, the Munich players were confronted with a 61-56 deficit.
The final part of the game began with a bang from Derrick Williams, he won the ball and hammered it home with his left hand kicking off a 7-0 run for Bayern that put them again in the lead at 62-61. The Bavarians mobilized the last reserves and fought passionately for every ball. Nemanja Dangubic and Nihad Djedovic helped the Munich team to a 65-63 lead before the young Berliner Jonas Mattisseck shocked the Reds with his fourth three to retake the lead. Djedovic three, Giedraitis three - the lead changed with every shot. Mattisseck poured in his fifth make from deep of the game and it pushed Berlin ahead again at 72-71. The Bavarians had several opportunities to turn the tide, but the shots missed their target. Berlin's Landry Nnoko scored 58 seconds before the end to make it 72-68 time-out FCBB. A last attempt Derrick Williams' three-pointer did not find its way into the basket and the game and any chance at the German cup was lost.
(Photo-Credit: Stickel & Rauchensteiner)