Lucic leads Bayern to their first ever victory at Maccabi

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The Bayern basketball team managed an upset on the third gameday in the EuroLeague: After an outstanding fighting performance, head coach Andrea Trinchieri's team won 85-82 against the favorite Maccabi Tel Aviv around top star Scottie Wilbekin (27 points) and thus for the first time ever captured a win on the road vs the Israeli record champion. The FCBB defended at a very high level over the entire 40 minutes. In a dramatic final phase, the Munich team almost lost despite the high effort due to several plays where they lost concentration. However, an offensive rebound by Leon Radosevic and a free throw by Nick Weiler-Babb led to the highly acclaimed second victory. The most outstanding player for the FCBB was Vladimir Lucic, who achieved personal bests with 26 points and a ranking value of 29 and was named "Player of the game" as he was in Berlin.

On Thursday morning Bayern will now travel on to Istanbul, where they will face the next Final Four contender Fenerbahce with Danilo Barthel on Friday (19:45).


Maccabi Tel Aviv - FC Bayern Basketball 82-85 (25-34)


Vladimr Lucic (26/4 Threes, 7/8 from the field), Paul Zipser (16), Jalen Reynolds (14/4 Rebounds), Wade Baldwin (13/5 Rebounds/3 Steals), JaJuan Johnson (6), Leon Radosevic (4), TJ Bray (3), Nihad Djedovic (2), Nick Weiler-Babb (1/4 Assists), Malcolm Thomas, Zan Mark Sisko und Diego Flaccadori.

Maccabi top scorer

Scottie Wilbekin (27 Points)


Borys Ryzhyk, Petri Mantyla, Uros Nikolic

Points per quarter Bayern - Maccabi: 15-15, 19-10, 26-30, 25-27.

Stats: Two-point shooting: 56% (FCBB) // 54% (Maccabi); Three-point shooting: 34% // 33%; Free-throw shooting: 79% // 81%; rebounds: 27 // 34; assists: 15 // 12; turnovers: 11 // 18.

Andrea Trinchieri: "That was a strange game. I think people saw today what this team can achieve, in a positive but also in a negative sense. We had the game under control and were very good on defense. But we didn't believe in victory and made so many mistakes in the last 50 seconds, which is really not acceptable at this level. So Maccabi came back into the game. But I stand by my team when I see the effort they put in and the way the guys are diving across the court after the ball. We made tons of mistakes, I had headaches in between and I'm trying to keep improving things. But with such an attitude I can live with the mistakes. There is simply no substitute for a team that flies over the court like that. Lucic has been with the club for so long, he is our Che Guevara. He may not talk so much, but I'm happy about a player who lets his performance speak for itself. I am very happy for him. I'm happy for the whole team. Now I have to find new players, new rotations so that we are fresh again on Friday. But today we are happy about this victory against a good team".

Vladimir Lucic: "I am really very happy that we won today. We started very well from the first minute, especially defensively. This is a great victory for us."

Paul Zipser: "We stood together from the first second on the court and on the bench. We fought together and defended very well, especially in the first three quarters. The end was crazy, but now we are just incredibly happy about this victory here."

Game recap:
Bayern started with great willpower as Lucic scored five points to take an early lead (5-2/ 3rd minute). But Maccabi took a narrow lead in a defensively oriented game (12-11/8.) The FCBB was strong, especially on defense and Paul Zipser grabbed an offensive rebound and scored to equalize at 15-15 to end the first quarter.

Trinchieri prepared his team well in the quarter break and the streaked to a 7-0 run (22-15/12.). Thanks to sensational defense, the Germans forced many Tel Aviv turnovers (14 in the first half, 11 FCBB steals) and ended up with a double-digit lead - 34-23 (18.). The only unfortunate issue was that open shots were given away (2-10 threes) and the chance for a bigger lead was wasted. 34-25 Munich lead at the half.

Maccabi's rebellion was to be expected and the playoff candidate came closer (38-34/24.). The FCBB remained calm, however, and relied on their defense while Lucic again led the turnaround with five points in a row (43-34/24.). The game now picked up a lot of momentum on the offensive side, with almost every attack leading to points. Thus Munich retained the double-digit lead (51-41/27.). Although Wade Baldwin almost effortlessly scored eight points in this phase, the hosts, under the command of Scottie Wilbekin, suddenly made it close at 57-53 (29.) with a 7-0 run. Zipser still had a trump card up his sleeve and at the buzzer at the end of the quarter he sank the three from deep to take a 60-55 lead.

This shot was like a liberating blow and the Munich team suddenly scored from beyond the three-point line and were quickly ten points ahead (68-58/32.). Maccabi did not allow themselves to be taken out of the game but a Lucic three took the lead to 73-62 for Bayern. Jalen Reynolds managed a monster block against Tyler Dorsey which brought even more energy to the court. Tel Aviv played small and relied on shots from beyond the arc as Wilbekin was now everywhere and taking over the game. With nine points he brought his team closer (77-73/38.) and then Lucic almost lost the ball and shout out of desperation and magically found the bottom of the net (80-74/39.) Bayern got into foul trouble, but kept their nerves and fought back - Lucic hit three free throws to give his team a 84-78 lead with just 67 seconds left in the game. Two bad turnovers by Zipser and Weiler-Babb in the last minute almost cost the Munich team the victory but Radosevic secured a monster rebound and the second victory in the still young EuroLeague season was achieved.


Photo Credit: EuroLeague Basketball


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