Hurting at Home
Audi Dome, Munich, October 18 – Since FC Bayern decided to develop the basketball part of their organization, the team has enjoyed a tremendous home court advantage.
During the promotion year in the ProA, the Olympia Ice Stadium was a formidable place for visiting opponents, as Bayern Basketball won all 15 games by an average of 25 points.
After promotion to Germany’s top basketball league, the BEKO BBL, the Audi Dome was a fortress as Munich only lost one home game during the regular season.
Two home games into the 2012-13 season, Bayern are still seeking their first home win.
“We all know how important how important it is for teams to win their home games, they help the team build confidence and identity,” said Bayern head coach Yannis Christopoulous. “It’s important to win every game. We should not forget who we played until now, two very good teams. We want to get back to winning games at home.”
Bayern were surprised at home by EWE Baskets Oldenburg in the season opener, going down by 30 points and eventually losing to the current second place team in the BBL. And then lost on a buzzer-beater against the Artland Dragons, a team that beat them last year in the playoffs.
The coach and the team will be looking for their first home win Saturday when they host Neckar RIESEN Ludwigsburg.
Kammron Taylor is the leading scorer for Ludwigsburg with 19 points per game, leading them to victories in their first two games of the season, defeating the Fraport Skylines and last year’s second place team and title favorite ratiopharm ulm in overtime on the road. They’ve dropped their last two games.
“Ludwigsburg is a very dangerous team,” warned Christopoulos. “They shoot very well from the three-point line and we have to be careful containing them. They beat Ulm on the road in overtime, and to do that one needs character. All teams in this league can do damage and cause you problems. There is no easy game, especially if you are Bayern Munich – there are no easy nights.”
There are some bright spots for Bayern coming into the game. They have won their games on the road, something they struggled with last year.
And in the last two games, their leading players from last season have finally got into a groove. Chevon Troutman and Jared Homan are back to scoring double figures and grabbing rebounds. Throw in scoring punch from newcomer Tyrese Rice, who also has found his shooting touch, the team is getting into shape.
“It’s important to see the front line do damage to our opponents,” said Christopoulos. “We fed them early to establish how we were going to play. I’m happy how we use the fouls, especially at the end of the game. And for me, the most important, this team does not quit. It omes from our heart and our brains. We have done that in all of our games.”
Tip-off is at 19:00 CET and plenty of tickets are available. The ticket window will be open at 17:00.
Editor’s Note: Follow Salman Mitha (@Sal_SportEagle) and Sport Eagle (@SportEagleTV) on Twitter for updates throughout the game.