The Hessen derby as a whole is the main course this weekend in the 25th BEKO BBL game day as The Giessen 46ers host The Deutsche Bank Skyliners as Frankfurt try to win their 8th game in a row in Giessen on Saturday March 5th. The last win for the home team, they were called Avitos Giessen and BJ Mckie was top scorer. The spunky guard duels continue each weekend as last weekend it wasthe lightening quick Dashaun Wood against Mr floater Tyrese Rice and this weekend it will be Dashaun Mr road runner Wood against Michael the fire fighter Jordan going head to head to see who can lead their team to victory. “Well I guess you have to say that Jordan is trying to put out the flame in all that speed that Wood has”, laughed John Bynum. Wood is an early MVP candidate in the BEKO BBL and Frankfurt would be as lost and helpless without as Paris Hilton would be without her lear jet, St Elmos Fire actress Demi Moore without Twitter and 1990 World Cup champion Loather Mathaeus without young girls. Michael Jordan is with his 6th team in Germany and saved Phoenix Hagen last season from moving down to the PRO A and returns to his next tour of duty with his fire truck and uniform ready to douse the fire and problems and keep The Giessen 46ers in the BEKO BBL. “He seems to put out fires when the team is on fire meaning he comes in with that water hose and saves the day. He just brings a lot to the table, his experience and his competitiveness rubs off on his teammates. He always wants to wins and it rubs off on his team”, added John Bynum. Jordan has that big smile and carefree demeanour on the outside, but in the inside, he is as focused to keep Giessen in the BEKO BBL like Kevin Garnett is every single game wearing the green, Tom hanks is preparing for a movie like Philadelphia or ex President Bill Clinton is deciding to chose Mcdonalds or Burger King as his next munching stop. The roadrunner and the fire fighter already met in the Ballsporthalle, but the Osthalle will be a whole different atmosphere for both competitors. “It will be a competitive match up, Wood brings the heat and MJ doesnt back down from anyone. It will be interesting by all means, because both are great players”, stressed TBB Trier guard John Bynum. The question remains is his big smile more an advantage or disadvantage for teams? “Well considering he has all those teeth, it is tough to beat, but at the same time I do have a cute smile but not as much teeth though. I’m not sure if it is an advantage or disadvantage but playing against him you dont want to see that smile cause that usually means they are winning the game”, joked John Bynum.
A very big special quality about the Hessen derby is that the two cities are only 65 kilometers apart, which gives fans the opportunity to be at both games. This is a charmed quality of service in the BBL that the distances are not as far, but in the NBA for example in a Lon Angeles-Boston series, it is very rare for fans to travel around the NBA, unless your actor Jack Nicholson, who can travel with a private jet, champagne and some models clinging from his arms. The Frankfurt-Giessen series is so close in comparison to NBA standards as if a kid had to only walk down the street to get some candy in the drug store. The two cities are are in size as different as are the skyscraper Messe turm in Frankfurt and a two story University building in Giessen. The town of Giessen is known as a University location and almost half of the population are students. Giessen is one of the few cities in Germany that has a Budhist temple and one of Electronic music most known German DJs Chris Liebing. Giessen is diminutive, but have a huge heart for Basketball.”Giessen loves Basketball! It is tradition there”, added Murat Didin.
The Giessen 46ers haven´t reached the BEKO BBL playoffs since the 2004-2005 season where they took Bamberg to the semi finals despite getting a 40 point effort from Chuck Eidson. Since that playoff run, the club has had a dismal 49-117 record and there poor performances the last years could of brought the famous American tradition of putting shopping bags over their heads, but somehow this tradition hasn´t carried over so fans have just looked ahead to the next season and been filled with thoughts and thoughts of what it actually could feel like watching Jannik Freese make a thunderous dunk in the Osthalle in the warm month of May. Last season, the Giessen 46ers were about as far away as playoff land as Lebron James is from Cleveland. The club finished in 14th place with a dismal 10-24 record and were always in fear of getting deregulated down. There most memorable stint was winning four of five games and beating Artland and Oldenburg back to back. Near the end of the season, they beat Bamberg at home. The team also lost five games with four or less points and it didn´t help their cause either top BEKO BBL scorer David Teague played the first half hurt and didn´t return in the second half of the season. They were also weakened by getting a wild card late and they had to build a new team quick and it took months to find a rhythm. It is no secret that teams that have small budgets always need some basketball god to help with less talent performing at a top level. “This years team is different. The problem last season was that Giessen only had one main scorer with David Teague who they depended on. They have more scorers this season. Elvir Ovcina keeps the team together with his experience”, commented Quentin Pryor.
Despite losing eight players including key guys like David Teague, Kevin Johnson, Lorenzo Williams and Osvaldo Jeanty and only keeping two players with Elvir Ovcina and Jannik Freese, the Giessen 46ers jumped out to a 5-2record and been one of the biggest surprises in the BEKO BBL this season together with Phoenix Hagen. The team might not have beat the most glamorous sounding and strong BEKO BBL teams besides the Telekom Baskets Bonn, but they played The EWE Baskets Oldenburg tough and losing a nail bitter to the Brose Baskets Bamberg 81-80, a game where they made a furious comeback and just coming up short. “We started playing defense after 30 minutes against Bamberg”, stressed Elvir Ovcina. Giessen may not have the most talent, but they have achieved one important ingredient early that many teams have problems finding which is that early team chemistry. “We have a complete squad and many people players compliment each other. We have very athletic wing players and big guys with great hands and that take up a lot of space. We know how to work with each other and we know each time that we step on the court, we are capable of surprising any team in the BEKO BBL”, added Elvir Ovcina. Last season, the team started 0-6 and after six games this season had 4 wins already. “Management did a good job bringing in new players. Only me and Jannik Freese remained. We might not have good results in preseason, but we always knew that if we continued to work hard, we would have success”, stressed Elvir Ovcina. “I wasnt surprised by the good Giessen start. They have some talent on their team that is coming together early”, commented Quentin Pryor. “their strength are their guards who are great and you got a great inside presence with Peacock. As far as weaknesses, I think just consistency”, expressed John Bynum. The question remained how well the Giessen 46ers would play if the team sustained an injury or went into a slump. Misfortune hit the club in Frankfurt as Anthoiny Smith got hurt in the first half in the 82-64 loss. After this loss, it seemed like some nasty plague was stuck in them as the team went on a 13 game losing streak as the team went from the playoffs places to the back places of the standings as quickly as Marv Albert can yelp yessssssssssssss. The team then made changes and some results started to evolve. “Giessen has been up and down this season but they are a different team now, with a new head coach and the addition of MJ, they can play with anyone on any night just like any other team in the BBL”, warned John Bynum. Since the arrival of Jordan, the team is 2-3 and slowly crawling away from the bottom. The team seemed very solid at teh start of the season, but with the addition of new coach Steven key and Jordan and Jeffers, the team should be so much stronger now. “Yes any time you throw in a leader like MJ then of course they get better and Jeffers has experience and they made the team better. They have a great new coach in Steven Keys and they will improve each week. I dont think they will have any problems at all staying in the league, I think they are on the right track “, warned John Bynum.
The key to winning the first Hessen derby game of the season for the Deutsche Bank Skyliners depended on how well they could stop the PSB(Powerful Scoring Boys) of Peacock, Smith and Brooks who were averaging 44 of the team 77 points per game in teh first two months, but after months of injuries and loses and two new players, the PSB trio are still potent making 35 of the total team 71 points . They were a big surprise in the first months dominating the game as if they had been playing together for many years like Garnett, Pierce and Allen of the Boston Celtics and were in their best playing age of 28 or 29, but instead, Peacock, Brooks and Smith have only been together about seven months and share one year of professional experience and have an average age of only 23 years of age. The sudden rise by the PSB has been more than surprising. “They are all good players, but I would have thought that it would take a little time to get adjusted to the league. They are excellent one on one players”, warned Phoenix Hagen American Quentin Pryor. The dominating play hasn´t only surprised the league, but also their own teammates. “It has been somewhat of a surprise, but all three played at good colleges and had good competition which I think has really helped. I hope that thy continue to play well”, warned 1996 NCAA finalist Elvir Ovcina. Getting the PSB was not luck, but a lot of scouting was involved. “Management did a fine job recruiting. All three are young and are very athletic and just get the job done. Most important is that all three like each other on and off the court and hang out together”, stressed ex Phoenix Hagen guard Chase Griffin. After the big Skyliner win in Goettingen, Skyliner American AJ Moye got big eyes as if he had found out he can take on Kobe Bryant in a one on one game Live on national television when the PSB boys were mentioned. “I love Giessen and what they are doing. Those guys know Giessen has been struggling in the past, but they dont care, they are playing to win this season. Peacock competes, Smith competes and Brooks, that guy dont stop competing. I have only seen about 15-20 guys in my life that compete as hard as Ryan Brooks. You can´t stop Brooks”, warned AJ Moye. With the additions of Maurice Jeffers and Michael Jordan, the club doesnt need to rely so much on the PSB bunch as earlier in the season.
The Giessen 46ers are led by Michael Jordan who is a 33 year old 183cm point guard from the city of brotherly love that is playing his first season with The Giessen 46ers and is for his sixth BEKO BBL team. The scouting report on Jordan reads like a encyclopedia that had to go overtime because of the lengthy information. Jordan understands the game and knows how its played. When asked to get teammates involved he will reduce his scoring output and add to his assist total. When asked to score, he can and will, without forcing the issue. And Michael Jordan always defends. At 183 cm he is extremely quick on his feet and combined with his fearless attitude he can drive an opponent crazy defending him full court, half court, over and through picks, or away from the ball. Of course his quickness is an asset on the offensive end also. But its combined with his experience and poise that makes him so effective. Michael Jordan is a leader on the court who can score in many ways and has all the skills to make the players around him look better. He is a motivator, organizer, and director who gets his teammates ready to play hard. Michael is extremely dangerous in the transition phase almost always making the right decision. He can go coast to coast, pull up for the shot, or find the right guy running the lanes. In the half court set Michael also has many options to choose from. He is an excellent pick and roll player as he is able to turn the corner and take it to the hole. When the defense cheats or switches he can hit the three or take a bigger guy one-on-one. In addition to his skills on both ends of the floor he has the necessary desire and drive to win every game. He plays with an intensity that fuels his teammates and the crowd alike. On the court Michael Jordan is the complete package at his position. He started his basketball career at Pennsylvania and started his BEKO BBL career with the Artland Dragons in 2002 helping the small village team reach the BEKO BBL. in the 2004-2005 season he played 34 games: 11.1ppg, 3.4rpg, Ast-1(6.4apg), 1.3spg, 2.6bpg, 2FGP: 52.5%, 3FGP: 31.3% and lost to the Opel Skyliners in the quarterfinals of the playoffs. His career highlight so far was winning the BEKO BBL title in 2006 with Cologne. He has played in countries like France, Belgium, Israel and Greece. Last season, he came late to Phoenix Hagen and helped the team stay in the league. This season, he started for MBC and now is averaging 9,0ppg, 2,8rpg and 4,4apg and shooting very well with 53% from the field and 61% from the three point line for Giessen. American 23 year old Zachery Peacock who is a 23 year old 203cm power forward from Miami, Florida. He is a strong frontcourt player who already is a tremendous rebounder and can shoot the basketball. He is a BEKO BBL rookie who played at Georgia Tech (NCAA) from 2006-2010. In his rookie season, he played 35 games averaging 8.6ppg, 4.1rpg, 1.0apg, 1.0spg, FGP: 47.7%, 3PT: 37.3%, FT: 79.1%. This past summer, he played NBA Summer League in Las Vegas (Miami Heat). He has taken the BEKO BBL by storm in the early going leading the league in scoring averaging 17,0ppg, 6,8rpg and 1,2spg. He has scored in double figures in five of the first six games including one double double. Ryan Brooks is a 22 year old 193cm guard from Narbeth, Pennsylvania. He also is a BEKO BBL rookie who played at Temple (NCAA) from 2006-2010. In his senior year, he played 35 games averaging 14.3ppg, 4.2rpg, 2.3apg, FGP: 41.3%, 3PT: 31.8%, FT: 81.0%. At Temple, he played together with ex BEKO BBL player Dustin Salisbery and current Bonn player Kark Tyndale. He was very successful at Temple being 10 Regular Season Runner-Up -08, 09, Atlantic 10 Tournament Finalist -08, Atlantic 10 Tournament Winner -09, 10, Atlantic 10 All-Tournament Team -09, Atlantic 10 Regular Season Co-Champion -10, and All-Atlantic 10 2nd Team -10. This past summer, he played NBA Summer League in Orlando (Philadelphia 76ers). This season, he is averaging 15,0ppg, and 6,7rpg.
Recently the team also signed Maurice Jeffers who is back in Giessen for a third season. He played at St Louis(NCAA) and was drafted by The Sacremento Kings in 2001. He played five years in Spain before coming to the Giessen 46ers in 2008. Last season, he averaged 14.4ppg, 4.0rpg, 1.3apg, FGP: 55.0%, 3PT: 35.3%, FT: 79.4%. This season he played in Cyprus and Argentina before coming to Giessen. Currently he is averaging 7,4ppg, 3,4rpg and 1,8apg.
Anthony Smith is a 24 year old 196cm shooting guard from Plano, Texas. He is a scorer with great quickness and leaping ability, NBA body and athleticism. He is a phenomenal athlete with great range from the shooting guard position. He has the strength and athleticism to take advantage of smaller guards. Also, because of his strength, he can play the 3 spot at times. His quickness and ball handling skills give him the ability to take almost any defender to the rim. His 3 point range is phenomenal. has great ball handling skills and when he is leading the team up the court on a fast break, he has the quick explosion needed to take the ball all the way, or he can stop on a dime and nail the mid-range He is also a good free throw shooter and knows how to get to the free throw line. An excellent run and jump style player. Along with his offensive skills, he is also a great defender who is very long and very good vertically on the floor as well in defensive position. Anthony plays good on the ball defense and has shown that he can force his opponent into committing turnovers. Anthony is a complete player who knows how to win and creates major match-up problems for the opposition. His Strength and athleticism make him a very effective rebounder from the perimeter as he demonstrated in College and in the Orlando Summer League. He showed these qualities at Liberty(NCAA) where he played from 2005-2009. In his senior year, he played games: 17.6ppg, 6.5rpg, 2.1apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 49.8%, 3Pts: 37.1%, FT: 65.8%. Last season, he played for CB Cornella (Spain-LEB Gold, starting five): 33 games: 14.3ppg, 3.6rpg, 2.4apg, 1.0spg, FGP: 46.2%, 3PT: 39.4%, FT: 59.0%. This season, he is averaging 10,9ppg, 3,2rpg and 1,apg. The Giessen 46ers brought in 27 year old 188cm combo guard Chase Griffin from Sammamish, Washington. He played at Pepperdine together with ex Cologne American Robert hollywood Turner from 2002-2007. In his senior year, he played 31 games averaging.15.7ppg, 4.4rpg, 2.0apg, 1.7spg, FGP: 43.3%, 3Pts: 37.3%, FT: 80.7%. He played at Phoenix Hagen from 2007-2010 and last season played 33 games: 13.5ppg, 3.2rpg, 2.3apg, FGP: 47.1%, 3PT: 33.6%, FT: 83.5%. This is only his fourth professional season and second in the BEKO BBL, but he shown early on that he could grow into the top class of point guards in the BEKO BBL. He is known as a playmaker, but has kept his reputation of being a scorer. “Griffin is a very dominant and strong point guard in the open court with strong ball handling, a quick eye for his teammates and also has a very quick shot. He reminds me a bit of Jason Williams with the way he presents himself on the court”, commented Ruben Spoden of Ehingen(PRO B). This season, he is averaging 9,0ppg, 1,2rpg and 1,9apg.
The team also signed American Ryan Brooks who is a 193cm shooting guard. He is a BEKO BBL rookie who played at Temple from 2006-2010. In his senior year, he played 35 games averaging 14.2rpg, 2.3apg, FGP: 41.3%, 3PT: 31.8%, FT: 81.0%. Currently he is averaging 10,2ppg, 2,8rpg and 1,5apg. The team also brought back 34 year old 211cm power forward/center Elvir Ovcina who came late to the Giessen 46ers last season. He is a movable center, who passes and scores well. He played at Syracuse (NCAA) from 1995-1999 and played a year together with ex NBA player John Wallace reaching the NCAA final in 1996 losing to Kentucky. He played for the EWE Baskets Oldenburg from 2001-2004 and won the BEKO BBL cup with Rhein Energy Cologne in 2005. He had his most success as a player with one team with Ostende winning the league title in 2006 and 2007 and cup in 2008. Last season for Giessen, he played 14 games averaging 14.1ppg, 8.1rpg, 2.8apg, 1.0bpg, FGP: 57.7%, 3PT: 32.3%, FT: 69.4%. Currently he is averaging 12,3ppg, 7,2rpg, and 2,4apg. The club also brought in 24 year old 183cm point guard classical floor general Giorgi Gamqrelidze from the country of Georgia. Even though he can put up huge assist numbers, he is also known as an unsavoury defender. He can run without making a sound. When he puts his mind to it, he’s capable of being unstoppable on offense and a stopper on defense. He catches his man like a tick and can squash an offender. He has good court vision and knows how to run a team. He played at MBC last season averaging 6.1ppg, 1.5rpg, 3.8apg, FGP: 45.5%, 3PT: 28.2%, FT: 72.8% in 33 games, but has already showed his mark in Fiba Eurocup and Eurochallenge games. He played at Energy Invest Rustavi the last two seasons and showed in the Georgian League that he can be a scoring point guard averaging 17.5ppg, and leading the league in assists with 7.6apg, and Steals with 3.0spg. He already has had a lot of success early in his career playing Championships U20 Division B in Lisbon (Portugal) -06 (Champion): 8 games: 8.3ppg, 2.9rpg, 6.0apg, 1.3spg, 2FGP: 59.4%, 3FGP: 30.8%, FT: 80%, Georgian League All-Star Game -08, 09, Georgian League Regular Season Champion -08, 09, Georgian League Champion -08, 09 and was Georgian league MVP in 2007. Currently, he is averaging 6,3ppg, 1,9rpg, and 4,1apg.
The team also kept 24 year old 211cm power forward/center German Jannik Freese who is playing his third season for the Giessen 46ers. He played at SG FT/MTV Braunschweig (2.Bundesliga) from 2005-2008, but only played 6 games in three years for the New Yorker Phantoms Braunschweig never getting a fair chance. In Giessen, he has been able to develop his game and get playing time. Last season, he played 30 games: 4.3ppg, 3.0rpg. Currently he is averaging 3,6ppg and 2,5rpg. The team also signed 27 year old 211cm German center Dirk Madrich. He is an extremely athletic and talented big man. He can run and jump with the best of them and creates problems for opponents with that aspect alone. Added to those physical skills are technically well developed post moves, the ability to face up and penetrate, as well as the ability to shoot as far as three point range. Defensively he is strong and quick enough to defend both the center and the power forward position. He is a good rebounder and shot blocker as well. He has a lot of experience having played for German National coach Dirk Bauerman early in his career in Bamberg in 2004-2005 playing ULEB Cup: 5 games: 2,8ppg, 1.8rpg, FGP: 77.8%; German Bundesliga: 17 games: 1.8ppg and winning the BEKO BBL title. He played four seasons in Braunschweig, two years with the Artland Dragons and a year in France for Starssburg. Last season, he played for Olimpiada Patron (Greece-A2, starting five): 5 games: 8.8ppg, 3.6rpg, FGP: 75.0%, FT: 87.5%, then moved to Konstantin Elephants Grevenbroich (Regionalliga, starting five): 4 games: 12.5ppg. He has played 31 ULEB cup games and 11 Eurocup games in his career. In Giessen, he comes form the bench and is averaging 2,8ppg and 1,8rpg. The club also brought in 23 year old 199cm forward Tim Schwartz. He played for Saar-Pfalz Braves (ProA) from 2005-2010 playing 124 second Bundesliga games. Last season, he played games: 8.8ppg, 4.7rpg, FGP: 54.2%, 3PT: 43.3%, FT: 75.0%. Currently, he is averaging 1,0ppg. Matthias Perl is a 21 year old 188cm quick point guard that is a relentless defender. He has been playing for Giessen teams since 2004 when he started for the MTV Giessen cadet team. He then played for VfB Giessen (Regionalliga) before playing for LTi Lich (ProA) from 2007-2009. Last season, he played for LTi Giessen 46ers (1.Bundesliga): 7 games: 0.7ppg; also played at Licher Basket Baeren (ProB): 28 games: 5.2ppg, 2.0rpg, 1.9apg, 1.6spg, FGP: 39.5%, 3PT: 31.1%, FT: 73.5%. Currently he is averaging 1,8ppg and 1,0rpg.
In the last years, The Deutsche Bank Skyliners have dominated the Hessen derby posting a 8-2 record. Frankfurt has demonstrated a special confidence and calmness that makes the Osthalle in Giessen look more like their own personal lounge area than a hostile Giessen playground with naughty kids throwing sticks and stones. Who could forget the onslaught before Christmas 2005 as Frankfurt routed Giessen 96 to 63 with seven three pointers from Desmond Ferguson. “I had a good rhythm going on in that game and my teammates made a good job getting me the ball. I wasn´t able to find my rhythm much while I played in Frankfurt for various reasons, but that game was probably my highlight playing there”, added ex Skyliner Desmond Ferguson. Three years ago under the guidance of Charles Barton, Frankfurt won a nail bitter 73 to 67 as Frankfurt showed nerves of steal in the dwindling minutes of the fourth quarter. Two years ago, Frankfurt won a tight game, even though it seemed like they were never in any real danger of losing as Derrick Allen led the team with 19 points and an energized Alex King flew into the arena with a specially made superman cape and steered the team off the bench scoring in double figures. Who could forget the buzzer beater by Karlsruhe German Rouven Roessler in 2007? Well that game winning shot that beat Frankfurt was 34 months ago, and Roessler still has the shot dancing in his dreams. “I remember that buzzer beater as if it was yesterday. I got the video clip to the game three weeks ago”, said ex Giessen 46er Rouven Roessler. In the 2008-2009 season, The Deutsche Bank Skyliners won in Giessen 75-57 getting 19 points form Lorenzo Gordon. In Frankfurt, they pounded Giessen 93-72 as Pascal Roller and Last season, Frankfurt won at home 80-69 getting 22 points from Derrick Allen. The last game against Giessen was a nail bitter win by Frankfurt in Giessen which was won 69-68 as Pascal Roller won the game with 13 seconds to play with two free throws. In the first meeting this season Frankfurt won 82-64 as Giessen was outscored 48-21 in the second half. The Deutsche Bank Skyliners were led by Dashaun Wood with 21 points and Roger Powell added 18 points.
The Deutsche Bank Skyliners have been playing very spirited basketball in the last weeks despite having injuries, but the team has played great with less players as guys are stepping up and despite more minutes still playing consistent. “We are showing a lot of character and very much mental toughness. We just know how to deal with every situation. All guys are stepping up. If one guys goes down than there is another guy that steps up”, warned Skyliner shooting guard Jimmy Mckinney. Some players like Mckinney, Chris Moss and Roger Powell will be extra motivated since they received contracts until the end of the season.24 year old 198cm forward Jevohn Sheperd will give his debut for the Deutsche Bank Skyliners. The Canadian national player who played at the 2010 World Championships in Turkey and got great basketball experience at Michigan(NCAA) will make his BEKO BBL after exploding in the PRO A for Osnabruck averaging 20,3ppg, 5,9rpg and 2,4apg. Frankfurt had been observing Sheperd for a longer time and are glad that they could get him. “W heard about him last summer, but he had already signed at Osnabrueck. I think that he could make an impact for us with two perimeter players out. We dont see Sheperd as another practice player, but a guy that can help us on the court”, stressed Skyliner coach Gordon Herbert. It has been a crazy last days, but Air Canada is happy about coming to Frankfurt. “I am glad to be here. I spoke to Jermaine Bucknor and he only said positive things about this organization. I think playing at the World Championships last summer helped me adjust to the style in Europe quicker. I play the position 2/3 and my biggest weapon is being a team player”, added Jevohn Sheperd. Sheperd doesn´t mind the nickname Air Canada, but wants people to know that he has more to his game than flying to the hoop. I got that nickname in college and it kind of stuck with me. There is more to my game than dunking. I am getting older now at 24, so I cant always think about dunking”, joked Jevohn Sheperd.
The key to victory for the Deutsche Bank Skyliners seems to lie in the paint and controlling the PSB trio of Peacock, Smith and Brooks. Frankfurt has the clear 35-31 team rebound edge, but thats a huge understatement. “Giessen has a lot of size in the paint. They might have one of the biggest teams in the league. On defense, Frankfurt has to limit the shots of the big three(PSB) and make them make plays for others. On offense, Frankfurt has to attack their guards and get them in foul trouble and make them use their bench. Frankfurt has very mobile big men and should attack the Giessen bigs off the dribble”, warned Quentin Pryor. “Giessen just has to control the tempo and make Frankfurt play defense for a full 24. On the defensive end they have to find a way to keep Wood out of the lane and not get barraged by the 3 point line. Frankfurt just needs to do what they do which is playing up tempo ball and knocking down threes. On the defensive end they just have to lock down on the perimeter and control the boards like any other team trying to win”, warned John Bynum. “Giessen is always difficult to play, because it is an intense derby and very hostile environment. We expect this to be the toughest game of all the games that we have recently had. Important for this game will be our mental approach”, warned Skyliner coach Gordon Herbert. The Giessen 46ers host The Deutsche Bank Skyliners March 5th at 20:00.