foto credit Fraport Skyliners
It was a untypical warm Sunday on October 30th as the Fraport Skyliners met the Basketball Lowen Braunschweig. You could have thought it was early May as it was mild and the 2000 BBL cup winner Skyliners were dueling in the playoffs. The sad reality is that the Fraport Skyliners have been as far away from the playoffs in the last few years as the New England Patriots are from winning a Super bowl this season. If one thought it couldn’t get any worse after last season well it has this season. After a 0-3 start, the Fraport Skyliners won their first game of the season in Weissenfels even if it was up to that point their worst performance of the season. But when your winless you will take anything. I have seen many games in the Fraport arena in the last 20 years, but the first half against Braunschweig last Sunday had to have been the worst I had ever seen. 7 points in the first quarter and only 22 at half-time. The shooting percentages were beyond frightful. It was scarier to digest than having Chuckie creep up behind you and try to strangle you. Frankfurt shot a pathetic 15% from the field at 5/33 and an unbelievable 7% from the parking lot at 1/14. You have to wonder what ex Fraport Skyliner and current German national team coach Gordon Herbert must have been thinking when he has to observe shooting like that. But as good hearted as Gordy is, he would just say ‘No worries, they will get out of it’. At the end of 40 minutes the club shot 27% from the field at 21-70 and 19,4% from outside at 6/31. It wasn’t like all were contested shots. They were missing open shots and semi-contested shots. Braunschweig didn’t have a good day either, but if you make 3-4 shots more, basketball life looks a lot different again. The most frightening aspect was that they did a pretty good job creating shots, but the execution rate wasn’t at the BBL level. One also noticed that the team doesn’t have that ruthless, consistent and confident scorer that will take over when ever needed. Currently the team only have 3 guys that could be that guy with JJ Frazier, Martinas Geben and Joshua Obiesie. But they aren’t consistent enough at the moment to be able to be that sure thing in crunch-time when the club needs a big spark. The Fraport Skyliners have to react now before it’s too late. The only logical choice now would be Matt Mobley (192-SG-1994, college: St.Bonaventure) to turn the season around.
It is early evening Tuesday night when I reach Fraport Skyliner legend Quantez Robertson. I tell him about the big BBL news of the day that ratiopharm Ulm had waived ex Fraport Skyliner guard Matt Mobley. Tez as how he is called by everyone tells me that athletic trainer Dennis Welm had told him the news already. Mobley was only averaging 8,8ppg, but was it not a little early to cut a prolific scorer like that who has shown at many different levels that he is a walking bucket. I wasn’t the only one who was surprised about the cutting of Mobley. ‘I was very surprised that Matt was cut. For him to only be averaging 8,8ppg after 5 games is very surprising. He is a 3 level scorer that can go off at anytime’, stressed ex Auburn (NCAA) defensive specialist Quantez Robertson. It isn’t hard not to dream for a guy like Matt Mobley to return to his old stomping ground Frankfurt. ‘It’s only logical that Matt return. It would be awesome if he could return. I’m sure he could help us. With his outside shooting and knock down ability, he would be able to spread the floor and have additional attacking lanes’, commented Quantez Robertson. Everyone sees him as that incredible offensive player that will decide games anytime, but Tez actually appreciates another part of his game most. ‘He did so much on offense and when he was doubled teamed could facilitate, but what I appreciated most about his game was how much of an underrated defender he is. Of course he would get beat at times just like anyone else, but he had a knack of stepping up big when we needed it and be able to make big plays’, warned Quantez Robertson.
Miles Schmidt-Scheuber and Matt Mobley in the Fraport arena in 2021
Mobley is in his fifth professional season and has been a lethal scorer wherever he has played. In his last 2 years of NCAA ball at St Bonaventure, he played a total of 63 games and scored in double figures in 51 games and twice hit 9 three’s against Richmond and Virginia Commonwealth University. His scoring rampage continued at the pro level as he was the third best scorer in the Euromillions league in Belgium with Proximus Spirou Charleroi and the next season was the second top scorer in Turkey with Sigortam.net ITU Basket Istanbul. Last season he made the jump to the best team league ACB in Spain and suited up with Casademont Zaragoza averaging 10.3ppg, 3.0rpg, 2.5apg, FGP: 48.2%, 3PT: 32.8%, FT: 85.2%. He proved he could hold his own against the best in Europe. In his third season he came to Frankfurt and under head coach Sebastian Gleim had absolute freedom to just play his game. He was the second best scorer in the easyCredit BBL averaging (20.0ppg), 4.7rpg, 3.4apg, 1.3spg, FGP: 48.1%, 3PT: 42.1%, FT: 87.8%. He had many massive games hitting BG Goettingen for 30 and 29 points in wins, scored 31 points in a win against Braunschweig, 29 points in a victory over Chemnitz and 30 points over Vechta just to name a few. Even if Tez was a busy bee on the court, he was able to enjoy every game with Matt Mobley. ‘He had so many 28-30 point games. I just loved the way he could shoot the ball and make those long range three’s at any moment. He was always that spark that could give us 2-3 three’s to get us going’, remembered Quantez Robertson. The American who loves to play point guard and could have reached the NBA in his prime only on his defensive qualities has played with many gifted scorers in his 14 year career and ranks Matt up near the top. ‘He is definitely top 5. No you know what, he is #4. I have him behind Dashaun Wood, Jordan Theodore and Philipp Scrubb’, smiled Quantez Robertson. So how realistic would it be to get Matt Mobley right now? Unrealistic If you look at the clubs budget, but then again his market value might be a bit down because of the scoring stats that he had in Ulm. But in the situation that the Fraport Skyliners are in now where their offense isn’t BBL credible, you must go into your savings and sacrifice if you want to save the season. Could Matt Mobley be that savior? ‘That is tough to say. The season just started. That would be unfair to say after only 5 games’, stated Quantez Robertson. He may not be the savior, but the club would be a lot stronger with him. The turnaround has to come now. The team needs Matt Mobley.