Brose Bamberg was able to celebrate two wins on the road in the space of 48 hours last weekend. The team of Head Coach Andrea Trinchieri pulled off a surprise on Friday evening by strolling to an 87:68 away win against playoff candidate Anadolu Efes Istanbul in the Euroleague, while on Sunday evening the German champions put an end to their losing streak on the road against EWE Baskets Oldenburg in the easyCredit German Basketball League by defeating the club from Lower Saxony for the first time under Trinchieri by 83:62.
The German champions were five wins off a playoff berth with six games remaining in the Euroleague and so had (and still have) only a tiny theoretical chance of advancing to the next round, but they showed their best away performance of the season at playoff candidate and eighth-placed Anadolu Efes Istanbul to win sensationally by 87:68. After a good start in which it went 9:7 in front, Bamberg was sloppy in possession in the final spell of the first period and the home side clinically capitalized on four turnovers to make easy points and go 23:17 ahead. In the second period, the German champions moved into turbo drive: In particular top scorer Leon Radosevic (16 points), Darius Miller (14) and Maodo Lo (15) scored from all positions and – thanks to a 16:0 run – Bamberg opened up a double-digit gap (33:23). Backed by excellent defense, the visitors prevented Anadolu from scoring for five minutes and ended up taking the period 25:9 and going in at half-time with a double-digit lead (42:32). Bamberg did not slacken its grip in the third quarter (in particular Nicolo Melli (16 points) scored consistently), with the result that it led 64:45 after 30 minutes. In the final period, Istanbul reduced the deficit to 75:60 with a large number of free throws, but Melli again extended his side’s lead at the end.
Since Andrea Trinchieri took over as Head Coach in Bamberg in 2014, he has been dogged by a losing streak: His team has played three games in the EWE Arena and each time it has suffered a narrow defeat against Oldenburg. The German champs were eager to put an end to that, but they got off to a pretty sluggish start. In the opening spell, the visitors failed to get a grip on center Brian Qvale, who notched up ten of Oldenburg’s first 11 points. League veteran Rickey Paulding (35 years old) also drained two buckets from beyond the arc to leave Trinchieri’s team trailing by 9:17. The turnaround was sparked by Daniel Theis: Bamberg now boarded up its basket and at the other end Theis made one slam-dunk after the other to help his side produce a run of ten points without reply and move 19:17 in front after 12 minutes. The lead changed hands eight times until midway through the second period, but then the German champions swung the encounter their way thanks to three buckets from downtown by Jerel McNeal, Maodo Lo and Fabien Causeur in the space of 90 seconds and four points by Jerel McNeal – a clear 31:16 in the second period gave the visitors a 44:33 lead at the break. Trinchieri’s team continued to dominate at the start of the third period: An 11:3 run made it 55:36, then the strong Maodo Lo (16 points) struck back after a run by Oldenburg to give his side a comfortable 66:47 lead. Bamberg did not slacken in the final quarter, either. Top scorer Fabien Causeur (18 points) and Daniel Theis made it 83:55 to send an emphatic message to Oldenburg, who – as things currently stand in the table – may be Bamberg’s opponents in the quarter-final of the playoffs.
Andrea Trinchieri commented: “We produced a magnificent team performance in Istanbul, were focused and always believed in ourselves. The result is the reward for the hard work my players put in every day. I’m very happy for them. We haven’t won many away games in the Euroleague this season, but we definitely deserved the victory here. We played excellently in defense throughout the game in Oldenburg. That was the key to keeping control of the game.”
Brose Bamberg now faces its next home game in the Euroleague on Thursday, March 16, 2017, when last year’s runners-up Fenerbahçe Istanbul come to the Brose Arena (tip-off: 8:45 p.m.). Trinchieri’s team narrowly lost the earlier game between the two by 66:67.