Basketball playoffs: Champions Berlin and FC Bayern favorites. – Sports

Slave Rimac uttered the most important sentence from Bavaria’s point of view when it was all over: “We will be in the same state as we were against Barcelona.” In the Euroleague, the Munich team had created sensation with their impressive performances, they almost beat the favorites for the title, Barcelona, ​​from the highest European competition. But now the team had lost its last main round match in the basketball Bundesliga against Alba Berlin by 78:83, the national prestige duel of the last four seasons.

The two main characters met each other three times in the last four final series, Munich won in 2018 and 2019, followed by Berlin. In 2020, however, the Alba opponent was Ludwigsburg, who eliminated the hosts in the quarter-finals of the tournament in Munich, which was closed due to Corona. Such things should be avoided this season, the showdown with the supposedly toughest competitor was a final determination of where we stand.

It was a moderate game, flawed on both sides, but appropriately stubborn because none of the opponents wanted to take a blot from the defeat into the playoffs of the German championship, which begins next Friday. Munich started weak, was 0:10 behind, at the break 34:41. Then the host improved in front of at least 3516 spectators, shortened to 56:58 before the last quarter, but the champion struggled to the goal with a narrow lead. Despite all the negligence, there was also something worth seeing on both sides, crashing dunks by Leon Radosevic (Bayern, 14 points) and Yovel Zoosmann (Berlin, 17), or a three-way duel between the two national players Andreas Obst (Bayern), 15 ) and Maodo Lo (Berlin, 12).

That the assessment of Bayern’s upcoming final series came from the assistant coach was another punchline of a hitherto strange season, which has come out of the planned rhythm due to the pandemic. 24 matches had to be postponed, resulting in further international competitions, which significantly burdened the players and resulted in injuries and unusual results. The match between Berlin and Braunschweig last weekend was even canceled, Lower Saxony does not have enough healthy players due to renewed infections. Because Braunschweig managed to stay up in the league but missed the playoffs, the match was canceled and the final table was created according to the quotient rule (wins divided by games).

Favorites for the final are Champions Berlin and FC Bayern, the surprise team is Bonn

The most recent showdown between Munich and Alba should have taken place a long time ago, but in mid-March, the second corona wave rolled in over the Munich squad. Now it hit the coach, Andrea Trinchieri had to stop working on Tuesday night without having achieved anything, he felt uncomfortable and went home, the club said. The cause is probably a bad stomach. The coach was still in the hall for the team meeting, and before the quick drive home he left what he thought of the overtaking match, to the television company Magentasport: “This match gives us nothing but that we have to play.” It was the third match in five days, which was the only way the Munich team could finish the main round on time.

Berlin was leading in the preliminary round, Bayern third, so it was about nothing – except reputation. Alba CEO Marco Baldi described it this way: “You finally saw how both clubs wanted to win by hand.” But he would not overestimate the victory, the defending champion would like to take the good feeling for the start of the playoffs into the quarterfinals.

It was the fourth meeting between the two currently best German teams this season – and it will not be the last time. The course of the season alone so far indicates that there will be a number of final rounds between the two German Euroleague participants, who have already met each other twice this season, both internationally and in the Bundesliga. The winner three times was Bayern Munich, which despite the recent defeat looks well placed for the quarter-finals of the playoffs.

Chemnitz probably waits there, only one last catch-up match will bring certainty. Berlin is a clear favorite against former league champion Bamberg, who won seven titles between 2010 and 2017, because Brose has since slipped into mediocrity and just reached the playoffs in eighth place. The second Bonn is the surprise team of the season and meets the seventh Hamburg, Ulm is weakened in the final round and will probably meet Ludwigsburg.

Despite all the open questions and unmanageable questions, there is one positive constant: Unlike the championship playoffs of the past two seasons, the halls will once again be full, and the pandemic cannot change that.

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