FC Bayern in the Euroleague play-offs: Barcelona’s basketball bank robbers

ONEwhen Andrea Trinchieri, the basketball coach of FC Bayern, for the first time picked up the national player Andreas Obst, the players from Barcelona looked for him – and found him quickly. They then staged the player that Obst defended. Kyle Kuric got three good shots, of which he only converted one. So Rolands Šmits got a layup and a can. Trinchieri saw it and replaced Obst after five minutes and 37 seconds.

When Trinchieri Obst came on for the second time, the Barcelona players looked for him again – and found him even faster. So Kuric got a three-point shot, which he converted. Trinchieri saw it and replaced Obst after one minute and 25 seconds.

Knowledge has never been more valuable

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On Wednesday night, 6,500 spectators in Munich could see how the basketball players from Barcelona played like bank robbers. They came to the hall in West Park under the command of the clever Lithuanian coach Šarūnas Jasikevičius, who led the raid, and they knew immediately where the weak points were. On the way to the basket, they kept looking and finding the defender they had chosen in the analysis. It was Nihad Djedović, 32, who was an above-average defender until he lost his quick first step due to injury in recent years.

And it was Andreas Obst, 25, who has never been an above-average defender. For Šarūnas Jasikevičius and his twelve robbers, they were the leaders of the bank who knew the code of the safe. So they threw themselves at her too. In the 8:45 minutes that Djedović played, they made 13 more points. In the 7:02 minutes that Obst played, they scored another four points. And then FC Barcelona won 75:66 over FC Bayern – and in the quarter-final series, where they are now ahead 2: 1, before the fourth match this Friday (20.45 on MagentaSport) in Munich, they are only one victory away from the four last in the Euroleague, the biggest stage in European basketball.

“Every block was at the border”

Late Wednesday night, Andrea Trinchieri sat on the small podium in the press room and said, “They were better.” He raved about the physical efforts of the Spaniards. “Every block they put was on the border,” he said. And one could have added: it was the blockages that made Djedović and above all Obst fall behind in defense – and then they were replaced. On the other hand, it is only a week ago that coach Andrea Trinchieri picked up national team player Andreas Obst as a substitute in Barcelona – and he and Deshaun Thomas (25 points) decided the second match for FC Bayern.

In 15 minutes, Fruit scored 15 points. He lowered four out of seven three-point attempts. His throw is so good that he almost always has to be guarded by a defender. A few tenths of a second and a few inches is enough for a sensible attempt. In Barcelona, ​​he once caught and threw the ball in one motion. Hardly anyone can do it in the Euroleague, the second best basketball league in the world.

It’s about “matchups”

The example of Andreas Obst shows why this quarterfinal series is so exciting. The Euroleague playoffs, where teams play against each other multiple times, are all about matchups. This is what they call the lineups that coaches work on every day. You have to think game by game, which players you want to use when, how and where. In the second match, Andrea Trinchieri used Obst’s forces in the attack for Bayern. In the third match, Šarūnas Jasikevičius exploited Obst’s weaknesses in the defense of Barcelona.

Of course, it’s not just about matchups. In the second match, Trinchieri got his striker Deshaun Thomas (2.01 m) defended against playmaker Nick Calathes (1.96 m). He bet on size versus speed. It may go wrong – but it worked. In the third match, Jasikevičius let Calathes defend against striker Vladimir Lučić (2.04 meters), Bayern’s best. He bet on speed versus size. It may go wrong – but it succeeded despite Lučić’s 17 points. This is how it goes back and forth. action and reaction. But the exciting thing about sports is that there is no answer for some players.

Wednesday night it was Nikola Mirotić, 31 years old, 2.08 meters tall. He is not only the best player in FC Barcelona, ​​but probably also the best in the Euroleague. He played in the NBA for five years – and then traveled again, even though he could have made significantly more money there. And because he was unstoppable in Munich and scored 25 points, Andrea Trinchieri, who must not lose with his team on Friday, also had to say: “Sometimes big players just play great.”

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