Timely lady luck, having a four leaf clover land mysteriously on the bench, getting a couple of timely loose balls, hitting 12713 three pointers or hitting 90% of your free throws is fortune that belongs to the game of basketball sometimes, but BG Goettingen didn´t seem to bring any of this good luck in their baggage to Frankfurt as the team was without American Trent Meacham who had an elbow injury and the club had given the walking papers to American Mike Scott 72 hours earlier. BG Goettingen were unable to allow too much to really wrong as they met the second best team in the beko BBL and had to be a lot more focused than the Spurs and Magic as they had been upset in the NBA playoffs not being able to come back down from 3-1, the way future NBA MVP Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls who took care of business in game five dismantling the Indiana Pacers 116-89, or Face the Nation legend Bob Schieffer telling the world in a very direct way that Donald Trump is a racist, but The Deutsche Bank Skyliners took matters in their own hands in the fourth quarter ending the game with a 20-3 run and winning game 1 in the Ballsporthalle 77-58. “It is always hard against Goettingen. We have played them three times and each time it came down to the last minutes. We have have the home court advantage and have to win our games at home to advance. It will be difficult to win series and lose at home and steal a game on the road”, warned MVP Dashaun Wood. Even though Frankfurt won by 19 points, the score didn´t indicate how close the game really was. “The game could of gone either way at the end. We had a run at end which was key. We are happy, but can´t lean back on this win”, stressed Skyliner center Marius Nolte. “BG Goettingen players looked worn out as they exited the locker room after the game as it wasn´t Wood that beat them with baskets, but other players. “This was a very hard fought game for 36 minutes. The Mckinney three pointer hurt us which was the turning point for them to go on their 20-3 run at the end”, expressed Alaska native Kyle Bailey.
Even though BG Goettingen was without Trenton Meacham and Mike Scott, they didn´t seem to be effected by their absence at all as they held their own never allowing The Deutsche Bank Skyliners to run away with the game early. “Of course, it is tough to play without Meacham and Scott, but these are the playoffs and there can be no excuses. You have to focus on what you have and not on what you don´t have”, added Kyle Bailey. For The Deutsche Bank Skyliners, they didn´t even know that BG Goettingen was shorthanded. “Who was missing from BG Goettingen wasn´t important for us. Coach Herbert mentioned it during the game that Meacham and Scott weren´t present. BG Goettingen is a good team that won 6 of their last seven games. We came into this game not underestimating them”, stressed Marius Nolte. “I think it is important that we as a team focus on what we have to do to win and not on their players”, said Skyliner forward Kimmo Muurinen. Skyliner top scorer Dashaun Wood knows that no matter who is on the court, beating BG Goettingen will never be a cake walk. “BG Goettingen showed in the last game, that despite not having Bailey, that they were still tough. No matter which five guys are on the court, they will always play tough. It is never easy against them”, stressed Dashaun Wood.
One player that was dearly missed in the BG Goettingen camp is Trenton Meacham. He has been an important part of their scoring attack and was a guy that could of really help with his shooting touch. Meacham was relaxed before tip off, but one could notice he would have loved to have jumped onto the court at last notice despite having a sore elbow. “I have a tear in my right elbow. I am going to get another MRI. I fell pretty bad on it, but I am thankful that it wasn´t as bad as it could of been”, said Trenton Meacham. BG Goettingen will miss Meacham a lot, but have the fortune of having a strong guard rotation. “Our guards have been playing very well. Bailey has had an incredible attitude after being injured so long. Dale also has done a good job when having extended minutes and Little also has been playing well. It is important that we have guys stepping up”, added Trenton Meacham. BG Goettingen also knows that the key to the series will be giving a strong team effort in each game. “We don´t only have to slow down Wood and Powell, but also guys like Mckinney, Robertson and Nolte give a lot of energy. Everyone is always talking about Wood, but overall the team is great. I think this will continue to be a great series with two of the leagues most athletic teams. I like the attitude of our team. I hope that we can peak in this series”, warned Trenton Meacham. Losing high flyer Mike Scott didn´t help the teams chances either, but the team seems to have erased this out of their memory banks and focusing on just playing well with what they have. “Scott had a great year and some monster games in the Eurocup. But we have had many injuries thiss eason, so we are used to situations like this. We have always kept a good attitude, worked harder and gotten closer as a team. We understand each other well off the court and that transforms onto the court. The team is thriving on this new challenge. Jermaine Raffington has really stepped up as well. We all root for each other, which can be rare for a team when everyone is so unselfish”, stressed Trenton Meacham.
Before the game started, the Ballsporthalle was transformed into a hallo Frankfurt-Hallo Goettingen chant between the fans, a ritual that had been started at the 2010 Top 4 last season. 200 fans had made the trek from Goettingen t see game 1 even if BG Goettingen was without Trenton Meacham and Mike Scott. Skyliner mascot Dunking Kong kissed the basketball for good luck and Kyle Bailey was one of the last on the court in warm ups as he was in deep thought on the sidelines getting ready for the game. Only 4,120 people found their way into the Ballsporthalle and witnessed a lightening start by BG Goettingen as they sped out on a 6-2 run. Frankfurt has Dashaun Wood, Artland Dragons Tyrese Rice and BG Goettingen Dwayne Anderson who like to control games. Bailey and Anderson showed their range from outside. Frankfurt missed their first four shots, but then displayed a knack at the start of getting the ball inside as Chris Moss scored twice and Wood found Quantez Robertson for an easy lay up as Frankfurt trailed 8-6. BG Goettingen then went on a mini 5-0 run as Anderson nailed another three pointer and Cornell grad Louis Dale snuck into the lane and finished with a pull up jumper as BG Goettingen led 13-6. Frankfurt fought back as St Louis native Jimmy Mckinney got hot with seven unanswered points a pull jumper, three pointer and fade away jumper as BG Goettinge led 15-13. Dale and Super Tez then traded baskets as Frankfurt trailed 17-16. Bailey then made a pull up jumper and Skyliner captain Pascal Roller made a jumper with two seconds remaining as Frankfurt trailed 19-18 after one quarter. “There was a real playoff atmosphere. Both teams were defending very aggressive. Dwayne Anderson was hot, which gave Frankfurt problems. Frankfurt rebounded the ball very well”, added EnBW Ludwigsburg assistant coach Steven Clauss. “The game went back and fourth. Anderson carried us and Frankfurt continued to hit very well”, added BG Goettingen manager Marc Franz. BG Goettingen was shooting 54% from the field and 50% from outside while The Deutsche Bank Skyliners were shooting 50% from the field and 40% from outside. Frankfurt had the 10-4 rebound edge, but three turnovers while BG Goettingen had none.
With both teams pretty much on the same level, the question was if either team could make a little dent in the defensive battle with a run? The Deutsche Bank Skyliners didn´t hesitate long as they jumped on BG Goettingen going on a 6-0 run as Dashaun Wood and Kimmo Murrinen dropped bombs from outside as Frankfurt had their first lead of the game 24-19. Frankfurt was playing very smart, but aggressive defense forcing BG Goettingen to turnovers on the penetration. Anderson was always there getting baskets as he kept his team in the game. Wood then made another three pointer as Frankfurt led 29-23. Then it was time for BG Goettingen to go on a run. Despite the run, Frankfurt was defending well as BG Goettingen had five turnovers in the first six minutes of the second quarter. BG Goettingen went on a 9-2 run to retake the lead 32-31. John Little may only be 182cm, but plays with the height of 198. He flew in for a tip in, which was followed by a Dale jumper and Anderson finished the scoring with another three pointer and then caught Frankfurt napping as he snuck in for a tip in dunk off a Bailey miss. Frankfurt regained the lead in the last few minutes as Mckinney hit another jumper and got free throws from Robertson and Chris Moss. BG Goettingen got a brake in the last seconds as John Little nailed a three pointer as Frankfurt went into halftime with a narrow 38-35 lead. “The game remained dominated in the defense. Frankfúrt had a very good start. Wood wasn´t so much in the game, but he was doing a great job defending Bailey. Anderson kept BG Goettingen in the game”, added EnBW Ludwigsburg assistant coach Steven Clauss. “We had some luck staying in the game. Anderson continued to play well. The Frankfurt free throws hurt a bit at the end”, said BG Goettingen manager Marc Franz. The Deutsche Bank Skyliners were shooting 35% from the field and 38% from the three point line while BG Goettingen was shooting 50% from the field and 50% from the three point line. Frankfurt still had the rebound edge 23-14 and had five turnovers while BG Goettingen had six turnovers.
The first 13 points scored in the third quarter had The Deutsche Bank Skyliners having a 5-0 run which was followed by a 8-0 run by BG Goettingen to knot the game at 43-43. Super Tez was involved in the first two Frankfurt buckets as Moss made a dunk as he set up perfectly the American from Cincinnati and he then sunk a three pointer fór the 43-35 lead. BG Goettingen center Jason Boone who had been controlled nicely in the game by the ferocious duo of Marius Nolte and Chris Moss scored on a dunk, but then made only 2 of 6 free throws. Anderson then went coast to coast making a pretty spin move and scoring and Bailey made a runner bank shot as the game was tied 43-43. Even though BG Goettingen had fought back, they were unable to retake the lead as Frankfurt closed out the third quarter with a 10-4 run to lead 53-47. Super Tez who had shown his brilliance form the parking lot in Ludwigsburg continued his hot shooting making a high rainbow for the 46-43 lead. Moss then made a dunk as he was all alone underneath as if he was on a field picking berries as he had been set up beautifully by Muurinen. BG Goettingen continued to fight went on a mini 4-0 run to cut the Frankfurt lead to 48-47 as Anderson made a very difficult shot in traffic and little used 30 year old German power forward Christoph Tetzner made a lay in as Frankfurt was sleeping under the hoop. Frankfurt finíshed the quarter on a mini 5-0 run as Wood made a three pointer and Nolte scored inside. BG Goettingen didn´t help their cause as Tetzner and Little missed 4 free throws combined. Frankfurt had the 53-47 lead after 30 minutes. ” The Deutsche Bank Skyliners were shooting 35% from the field and 35% from the parking lot while BG Goettingen was shooting 44% from the field and 38% from the parking lot. Frankfurt was winning the rebound duel 35-28 and had six turnovers while BG Goettingen had seven turnovers.
BG Goettingen got the better start in the fourth quarter as they cruised out on a 8-4 run to cut the Frankfurt lead to 57-55. Anderson continued to pick apart the Frankfurt defense nailing a three pointer and John Little then snuck through the Frankfurt defense stealing the usual dunk show from Super Tez and co with an ally-op dunk as he was fed with a perfect lob pass from Bailey. Muurinen and Antoine Jordan sunk a three pointer. It seemed the game would go down to the wire, but The Deutsche Bank Skyliners surprised the whole arena closing out the game with a 20-3 run. In the last win against BG Goettingen 6 weeks ago it was Wood that scored 8 consecutive points to take Frankfurt from the 67-67 score to the 75-67 lead. This time it wasn´t Wood, but Jimmy Mckinney who opened up the game from the score of 57-55 to 68-57. Mckinney used his best weapon his jumper and really silenced BG Goettingen as he nailed a last second three pointer at the shot clock buzzer. As Mckinney nailed another three pointer for the 68-57 lead, Mckinney let out a yell of emotion as if his St Louis Cardinals and Blues had won the World Series and Stanley Cup at the same time. This Mckinney arsenal of attack via his jumper seemed to paralyze BG Goettingen. BG Goettingen put up wild shots and coughed up the ball on offense while Frankfurt took their strong defense and transformed it into continued baskets on offense as Frankfurt closed out the game with three dunks and a three pointer by Dominik Bahiense De Mello. Super Tez made a plain dunk, then dunked over the 203cm Jason Boone on the ally-op and Roger Powell did a one handed dunk as it seemed from in flight from the free throw line in best Chicago Bull manner Michael Jordan. Frankfurt left the floor with a well deserved 77-58 win. “We increased our intensity in the fourth quarter. The Mckinney shots really hurt the self confidence of BG Goettingen. Wood had a big game almost getting a triple double and Tez also played very well. We did a better job on Anderson in the second half”, stressed Marius Nolte. “Frankfurt hit big shots. We focused on Wood and Powell, but you have to focus on so many other players. Tez and Mckinney hit very well. We didn´t rebound well and if we would of hit more free throws might of made it closer at the end”, added BG Goettingen guard Antoine Jordan. “Key in the end was our defense. It came down to who made more stops and we also did a good job controlling the other players besides Anderson”, added Dashaun Wood.
The Deutsche Bank Skyliners were led by Jimmy Mckinney with 20 points and nine rebounds. Quantez Robertson had 18 points. Dashaun Wood had 13 points, 11 rebounds and nine assists just missing a triple double. “It would have been nice to have had a triple double in a playoff game, but the most important thing is that we win a championship. This was a Chris Paul type of stat line”, said Dashaun Wood. BG Goettingen was led by Dwayne Anderson had 26 points and eight rebounds. “I see Anderson and Suput as the top power forward players in the league. He is so hard to defend off the dribble. he plays like a guard and can post up”, stressed Dashaun Wood. “I also see Anderson on the top of that list. I haven´t seen anyone stop him yet”, commented Kyle Bailey. Kyle Bailey contributed nine points, six rebounds and two assists.
The Deutsche Bank Skyliners got a great performance from Marius Nolte and Chris Moss keeping Jason Boone to only five points and eight rebounds in 31 minutes. “I know Boone since a long time. It is always a big challenge for me to play against a physical guy like Boone. You can´t let Boone get the position, because as soon as he is at the basket, he makes the shots in his sleep. You also have to give a lot of credit to Chris Moss who did a great job. I am so happy that he is on the team”, stressed Marius Nolte. Frankfurt rebounded well winning the battle under the baords 46-36, but also did other things well. “I think the best thing that we did today was just being even. We didn´t have any real up and downs. It is always tough playing against them and you can never relax and you are always on the edge. It will only get worse that is the fun part”, laughed Kimmo Muurinen. BG Goettingen will have must win in game, but will not have the advantage of playing in their beloved Lok halle as the arena is blocked and the team will have to play down the road in Kassel. “I hope that the BG Goettingen fans are unable to bring that LOK Halle atmosphere to Kassel. We have to control Dwayne Anderson and it can´t be that we allow a guy like that to get 26 points. We have to start well and have less turnovers”, added Marius Nolte. “We have to rebound better and do a better job of keeping Wood out of the lane. We played pretty well as a team, but we can´t let them to capitalize on our mistakes in game 2”, warned Kyle Bailey. “We will have to execute a little better on offense in game 2. They took us out of a lot of things in game 1. We have to control Anderson and as a whole play better than in game one”, warned Dashaun Wood. BG Goettingen host The Deutsche Bank Skyliners in Kassel on May 4th at 20:00.