Will Some Good Luck Finally Arrive For BG Goettingen In Their Current Turbulent Season?

Sometimes in life things turn a complete 180 degrees from comfortable and successful to miserable and unsuccessful like ex NBA star Scottie Pippen who is trying to live a normal life in retirement, but claims he has been unfairly portrayed in the media as a walking financial disaster and suing every media outlet who reported he went bankrupt, the NBA trying to prepare for the upcoming season, but the many cancelled trades seeming to take the spotlight from the whole affair or the current Syracuse sex scandal that has tarnished that schools reputation quicker than Shaq can devour a Big Mac or yell Kazaam. For 2010 Eurochallenge winner BG Goettingen that success seems about as far away as Charles Barton ever returning to the Skyliners as their current season as been like a nightmare first losing their heart and soul John Patrick who led the team into the Beko BBL playoffs in three out of four seasons, their many stars following him to Wurzburg, the Marco Grimaldi tragedy of him losing loved ones in a car accident and on top of that the team living in 18th place for most of the season which might feel the same as if one was deserted in the never revealed Lok Halle dungeon if there ever was one. With the Christmas season nearing its end when the Fraport Skyliners arrive in Goettingen December 26th, BG Goettingen could use some late Christmas gifts from Santa with a win. The team recently replaced head coach Stefan Mienack with assistant coach Michael Meeks and won a game against Tuebingen. Despite all the hard ship that the team has suffered, the atmosphere seems in tact. “When we played in Goettingen, I didn´t sense as much sadness. The fans were good there and there seemed to be a sense of urgency. They played with a chip on their shoulder”, commented Tuebingen guard Josh Young. Nothing comes easy these days in Goettingen as the team plays with a very young and inexperienced team looking to gain experience and getting better while needing to win games each weekend and trying to escape out of the trap door that they have fallen into in the Beko BBL cellar all the while having the misfortune of the current season upon them like a dust cloud. “Every team deals with internal problems, but it seems like BG Goettingen have had to deal with a lot this season. I hope that they can turn their season around. They have to continue to work and do things the right way. I believe that even with bad times, you will always get out what you put in”, warned Tuebingen American Josh Young.

Last season, BG Goettingen finished the season in seventh place with a record of 19-15 and were benefited of getting to their third playoffs in four years on account of a strong finish. When comparing the 2010-2011 team to the 2009-2010 team after seven games, there was little difference as BG Goettingen had a record of 4-3. Two seasons ago after seven games BG Goettingen, then won 15 of their next 18 games and also were playing Eurochallenge. Defense seemed to be an issue in the early part of the season concerning the 3-4 start. “We were missing 24 seconds of defense. Looking back on our loses, we did not do a good job playing defense until the possession was over. This is something that we have been working on this week”, stressed exBG Goettingen center Jason Boone. BG Goettingen has been up and down since the start of the season and had a record of 10-8 and quietly moved on to the Top 16 of the Eurocup. The club had a 5 game winning streak around the holiday season having big wins against The Artland Dragons and The Eisbaeren Bremerhaven. But then also had two 4 game losing streaks. Despite being up and down, the team was capable of beating anyone in the BEKO BBL. “Goettingen had a great team and had an up and down season but they can beat anyone on any giving night because of there style of play”, stressed John Bynum. The playoff race was tight, but BG Goettingen was able to make it into the final 8 at the end of the season. “I think they deserved to be a playoff team. They were are capable of beating anyone on any giving night and if they get it going they are tough to beat on their home court as well”, warned John Bynum.

Losing key players like Taylor Rochestie, Chris Oliver, Ben Jacobson and Chester Frazier seemed to have made a difference in the quality of play as well as in their style last season. “Rochestie and Oliver are two great players that meant a lot to their team. They seem to be dearly missed. I think that they had a much better roster the last few years, but some players had success and moved on. Playing against them last season was much easier than the last few years, but they still had a lot of pressure. They still played their kind of style, but not as extreme as in the past”, warned ex Walter Tigers Tuebingen guard Steven Wright. Despite a little change in the new style of BG Goettingen, the team has also gained a few new positives in their game. “Our game plan changed from game to game, but we still tryed to control the tempo in each game. I think that our team was more athletic than in the past, but also better at slowing down the pace when it was needed”, stressed New York native Jason Boone. “BG Goettingen played a fast paced speed up style and had a lot of the same type of players. They were small and had to play like this. I liked their style”, stressed ex Michigan State guard Travis Walton. Patrick also seems to have understood how to form the style with the players that he had gotten last season. “I think the coach of Goettingen was great at adjusting. And with his team last year he adjusted to the players he had and they still put up pressure but were more controlled.  It w asn´t as “wild” as the past couple seasons. Before it seemed like “organized chaos”. Now, it was more controlled pressure. Nothing “hell-like”, laughed Wayne Bernard. BG Goettingen had to step up their pressure against Dashaun Wood lasts eason. “I think they Mix it up and still use some press but not like they used to. I would say like 75% press but for Dashaun Wood I would say more Pressure”, joked Mark Dorris.

This past summer, it was no secret that the 2011-2012 would be a rebirth and a rebuilding year as the creator of the past BG Goettingen success head coach John Patrick had moved on and key players like Dwayne Anderson, John Little, Jason Boone, Trenton Meacham and Robert Kulawick left the team for new and more lucrative basketball challenges. The team named young Stefan Mienack coach who was put into the water as a guy who had learned under Patrick as an assistant coach from 2008-2011. The team also said goodbye to the beloved Lok arena that had a special aura and move d into the Sparkassen arena that seats 3,447 persons. With some debts having still to be paid, the club only had a slim 1,5 million budget and had less player quality to search for. “We got American and German players with quality. We wanted to start a reputation of being  a team that gets young german players and develop further. We had to live with the risk that possibly not all players would be able to get used to the Beko BBL level”, stressed BG Goettingen sport director Jan Schiecke. The club got five Americans from the NCAA level with Kwadzo Ahelegbe, Paris Horne, Roberto Mafra, Damian Saunders and Josh Slater. The team also picked up big man Raymond Sykes that has two years of professional experience. The team got German veteran Max Weber and big German talent Phillip Noch. During the losing streak, the club had to part ways with Americans Josh Slater and Damian Saunders. Recently, the club brought in Sean Evans from the PRO A from Duesseldorf that has made an impact as well as Matt Bauscher. The team also brought in guard insurance with Jerel Allen. Recently the club axed Stefan Mienack and replaced him with 2000fifth best scorer at the Sydney Olympics with Michael Meeks.

After a 107-63 blow out loss in Bamberg, the team responded by getting a 93-71 win at home against EnBW Ludwigsburg. However then the team suffered a bitter nine game losing streak. In their losing streak, they were outscored by the opponents by 136 points. They lost 8 games by more than 10 points and lost a close battle against FC Bayern Munich 77-73 at home. The team has allowed 80 points average in 12 games which might not always pose a problem for a team like Phoenix Hagen or Bamberg that can score quickly an din bunches, but if your BG Goettingen and average only 67 points per game, then you will have problems winning games if you can´t score at a consistent rate. “A weakness is that they are young and inexperienced like we are. Their transition defense isn´t too great either”, stressed Tuebingen guard josh Young. When BG Goettingen play defense, they seem to be playing basketball lottery a lot. “They usually play pressure defense, but when we played them, they didn´t pressure as much maybe they are starting a new style? Their defense is ok and they gamble a lot, so they force many turnovers”, stated ex Drake player Josh Young. BG Goettingen definitely have potential, but how much is that worth in the Beko BBL that has continued to get better each season? “Their strength is their athletcism and inside play. Sykes and Evans are a handful and both are very athletic. Evans is very tough on the boards and strong”, added Josh Young. Young saw the team recently and predicts better times for the club. “They aren´t the same team that started the season. They have a new coach and three new players. I am sure that they will play better in the second half of the season”, expressed Josh Young.

With Christmas day past and the feast having been digested, The Fraport Skyliners will continue to fight getting out of the lower standings and clawing back up to the middle ground. The Fraport Skyliners have been playing better basketball of late and will have to continue to focus on playing more consistent basketball and playing stronger in crunch time. Frankfurt has defended well in the last weeks especially in Eurocup play and will have to have their game faces on defense as stopping the versatile offense of BG Goettingen will be no cake walk. “Frankfurt has to play very good interior defense, control the boards and not let them get going from the three point line. Frankfurt also will have to watch Paris Horne and Matt Bauscher as they can get going quickly”, warned Josh Young. “Playing in Goettingen won´t be easy, but I think that if we can control the tempo and play like we did in Braunschweig, then we should have good chances to win”, warned Johannes Herber.

BG Goettingen is led by Raymond Sykes who is a 25 year old 206cm power forward from Jacksonville, Florida that is playing his first season with BG Goettingen. He played at Clemson (NCAA) from 2005-2009 and in his senior year played 32 games: 7.9ppg, 5.1rpg, 1.0bpg, FGP: 57.8%, FT: 55.7%. He was an NIT finalist in 2007 playing with players like Clif Hammonds and KC Rivers. He played his first two seasons with the Sioux Falls Skyforce (D-League) and last season played 48 games: 14.1ppg, 6.2rpg, 1.0apg, 1.8bpg, FGP: 51.7%, FT: 72.2%. The team returned Louis Dale who is a 23 year old 180cm point guard from Birmingham, Alabama. He played at Cornell (NCAA) from 2006-2010 an din his senior year played 31 games: 12.8ppg, 2.9rpg, 4.7apg, 1.4spg, FGP: 46.9%, 3PT. He reached the NCAA Sweet 16 in 2010 and was All Ivy- League Player of the Year -08, All-Ivy League 1st Team -08, 09, 10 and was Ivy League Champion -08, 09, 10. Last season as a rookie he played EuroCup: 13 games: 4.5ppg, 1.8rpg, 1.8apg; German League: 37 games: 7.9ppg, 2.2rpg, 2.0apg, FGP: 47.0%, 3PT: 30.0%, FT: 76.8%. The team also added 191 cm guard Paris Horne who played at St Johns from 2007-2011. In his senior year, he played 33 games: 7.9ppg, 2.9rpg, 1.6apg, 1.0spg, FGP: 45.3%, 3PT: 37.7%, FT: 61.9%: Finished career tied for second all-time (Felipe Lopez) in career three-pointers made with 148. At St Johns, he played with guys like Sean Evans and Larry Wright that are currently playing In Germany. The club recently stabilized their inside game with Sean Evans who is a 23 year old 203cm forward from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He also played at St Johns from 2007-2011 and in his senior year, he played 31 games: 3.6ppg, 2.7rpg, FGP: 49.4%, FT: 59.3%. His best season at St Johns was his second year where he averaged 10.3ppg, 7.1rpg, 1.0spg, FGP: 51.4%, FT: 50.8%. He started his professional basketball career recently with the Gloria Giants Duesseldorf where he didn´t fit into the rotation of Murat Didin averaging 6,2ppg and 2,0rpg in 7,8 minutes per game.

The team also recently signed Matt Bauscher who is a 26 year old 188cm guard from Caldwell, Idaho. He played at Boise State from 2005-2008 and in his senior year played 33 games: 9.2ppg, 3.4rpg, 3.2apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 49.1%, 3Pts: 43.5%, FT: 50.0%. He spent the last three seasons in Holland making a name for himself playing for Aris Friesland Leeuwarden and GasTerra Flames Groningen where he was Dutch Eredivisie Champion  2010 and a Dutch Eredivisie Finalist in 2011. Last season, he played EuroCup: 6 games: 6.8ppg, 4.0rpg, 4.5apg, 1.5spg, FGP: 37.8%, 3PT: 18.8%, FT: 50.0%; Euroleague Qualifying Round: 2 games: 6.5ppg, 3.0rpg, 3.5apg, 1.5spg; Dutch League: 51 games: 11.3ppg, 3.3rpg, Assists-2(4.7apg), 1.7spg, FGP: 51.4%, 3PT: 30.4%, FT: 55.9%. The team also brought in Kwadzo Ahelegbe who is also a Beko BBL rookie. He played at N.Iowa (NCAA) from 2006-2011 and was a teammate of ex BG Goettingen pit bull defender John Little. He played a total of 133 NCAA games. He reached the NCAA Sweet 16i n 2010. The team brought back Kyle Bailey for a fourth time in six years. He  is a 29 year old 188cm guard from Fairbanks Alaska that is playing his third season for BG Goettingen. He played at Santa Clara from 2000-2005 playing together with Macabbi Tel Aviv guard Dorin Perkins. He is a very smart player that handles the ball well and is strong in pressure situations. In his rookie season, he split time between the Florida Flame(NBDL) and BK Riga. Since 2006, he has played in Germany. He helped BG Goettingen reach the BBL in 2007 from the second division. In 2007-2008, he played for Ratiopharm Ulm and in 2008-2009 helped BG Goettingen reach the playoffs averaging 14,4ppg, 4,3rpg and 3,3apg. Last season, he played EnBW Ludwigsburg, but it was a season to forget. He played 21 games: 8.8ppg, 3.9rpg, 2.5apg, FGP: 47.8%, 3PT: 18.3%, FT: 82.0%. He was released in February 2010. He somehow didn´t seem to fit into the game style of coach Tolga Ongoren. Last season for BG Goettingen, he played EuroCup: 3 games: 8.3ppg, 1.3rpg, 2.0apg; German League: 20 games: 10.0ppg, 3.8rpg, 2.7apg, Steals-5(1.5spg), FGP: 35.5%, 3PT: 33.3%, FT: 68.9%.

Jerel Allen is a 26 year old 193cm shooting guard/small forward that is playing his ffith professional season. He is a versatile high energy explosive player capable of playing either guard position or a wing forward. He is a slashing player who can put the ball on the floor and finish strongly or knockdown the perimeter shot with good range. Jerel is strong rebounder who is especially dangerous on offensive rebounds because of his explosive leaping ability. He is an unselfish player and a good passer who will find the open player. Jerel is lock-down defender who can match-up with the opposing team’s best player. Florida St. Head Coach Leonard Hamilton said: “Jerel never had a bad effort day during his career as a Seminole. He worked as hard as any player I have coached at Florida State. He was also a very positive player whose attitude was spread throughout our team and was a very positive force during his career. Allen played at Florida St. (NCAA) from 2005-2007 with ratiopharm Ulm player Isiah Swann and NBA player Toney Douglas and in his senior year played 35 games: 4.9ppg, 2.0rpg, 1.1apg. He has gained European experience playing in countries like Lithuania and the Ukraine. Last season, he was down under playing for the Rockingham Flames (Australia-SBL, starting five): 21games: 21.7ppg, 6.5rpg, 3.1apg, FG: 41.7%. The team also brought in Phillip Noch who is a 22 year old 200cm shooting guard/small forward. He played his entire career before coming to BG Goettingen in Braunschweig from 2005-2011. He played for the new Yorker Phantoms and for the Spot Up Medien Baskets Braunschweig (ProB). In his six years there, he got into 12 Beko BBL games. Last season, he played Spot Up Medien Baskets Braunschweig (ProB, starting five): 15 games: 11.7ppg, 5.0rpg, 1.5apg, FGP: 54.7%, 3PT: 28.8%, FT: 64.6%, played also at New Yorker Phantoms Braunschweig (1.Bundesliga): 10 games: 2.0ppg, 1.0rpg. He played at the European Championships U18 in Amaliada (Greece) -06: 6 games: 1.2ppg, and European Championships U18 in Madrid (Spain) -07: 6 games: 4.2ppg, 1.8rpg.

The team also signed Max Weber who is a 201cm small forward and be only 26, but he has much experience having played in Peru and winning a beko BBL title with Bamberg in 2005 at the age of 20. He started his basketball career with BBC Bayreuth (2.Bundesliga) in 2003 and then played for GHP Bamberg and TSV Troester II Breitengussbach from 2004-2oo6. He then played for TV Langen (2.Bundesliga) and the Deutsche Bank Skyliners from 2006-2009. He played a total of 19beko BBL games and seven Eurochallenge games. In 2009-2010, he played for the  LTi Giessen 46ers playing 28 games: 2.6ppg, 1.4rpg. Last season, he played for the Saar-Pfalz Braves (ProA, starting five): 27 games: 11.5ppg, 3.3rpg, 2.2apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 46.6%, 3PT: 27.0%, FT: 60.0%. He was a member of the German U-16, U-18, and U-20 national teams and played at World University Championships in Bangkoki n 2007. The team also brought in 26 year old 206cm Roberto Mafra who is from Brazil. He played at Southeastern CC (JUCO) from 2006-2008 and at San Diego (NCAA) from 2008-2010 where he played a total of 68 NCAA games and in his senior year played 32 games: 8.5ppg, 4.5rpg, 1.2bpg, FGP: 49.3%, FT: 72.8%. Awards/Achievements in his basketball career have been Brazilian University National Team -05, 09, World University Games in Izmir -05, and World University Games in Belgrade (Serbia) -09: 5 games: 8.4ppg, 2.6rpg, FGP: 65.5%. The team also has young German players like Malte Herwig, Vitalis Chikoko, Aaron Donkor, David Markert and Nico Adamczk fighting for playing time.

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