It’s No Secret That The White Wings Hanau And Bubba Furlong Are The Best Team And Center In The Pro B South

photo credit White Wings Hanau

I have to be honest when you watch an incredible team like the EPG Baskets Koblenz on a regular basis this season, it can be difficult to keep certain other factors in perspective in the Pro B south. The 9-0 EPG Baskets have been blowing away opponents this season at ease the same way Luka Doncic does his defenders this season. They have without a doubt the best team on paper and this season with the help of new head coach Pat Elzie have put it all together and most likely if nothing goes completely wrong will move up to the Pro A. But wait a minute the EPG Baskets Koblenz aren’t the best team in the Pro B. It is actually the White Wings Hanau who have an unbelievable 11-0 record. Yes 11-0. The White Wings Hanau are 11-0. No disrespect to the organization, but if someone had told me in August 2022 that this team would be 11-0 shortly before 2023, I would of laughed and said that’s like believing now that the Detroit Pistons will turn it around in the second half of the season. Bubba Furlong (206-C-1999, college: NWOSU) actually had a good feeling about the team in late summer and would have had his thumbs up if someone had predicted a 11-0 start. ‘I would’ve believed them, even though we’re young we have a lot of great talent and we play well together’, smiled Bubba Furlong. The big man also has a simple recipe that has made the success become a reality. ‘We come to work everyday and try to get better. We believe we can win then it’s just up to making the right plays and paying attention to scouting reports’, warned Bubba Furlong. If one looks at the roster and compares it too many other rosters in the Pro B south, one recognizes that the club lacks experience and well known players. What does Bubba Furlong say to those haters that say his team is a group of no names that are overachieving? ‘I would say if we’re a team of no names, maybe our names should be known and the others whose names are known should be the no names. We’ve had to work hard for the success we’ve had this year. We have a great roster’, warned Bubba Furlong.

photo credit White Wings Hanau

I reach Bubba Furlong who played 2 seasons at Sam Houston State University (NCAA) on a mild late December morning as he is basking in the 11-0 success of his team. Life is very good as he was able to welcome his mother and sister who came from the States to spend time with him in Hanau for the holidays. Basketball life is obviously a lot more enjoyable when your winning and so far this season everything has come together nicely. The club racks up 90 points per contest and on defense found an identity quickly and allows only 73 points per game. They had a few lax defensive games, but fortunately for them, they scored over 100 points per game. They have kept teams to under 70 points 6 times. ‘I would say we’re defensively aggressive all the time. We like to constantly change things on defense to keep teams guessing’, stressed Bubba Furlong. The guy who deserves a lot of credit is Spanish head coach Marti Zamora-Mas who already did a fine job leading Hanau into the playoffs last season, but couldn’t get by a strong Munster team. This season the team has made huge steps and the chemistry was developed rapidly as the club came together on and off the court. ‘Coach deserves a lot of credit and puts us in the position to be great on the court and our scouts are on point to where we can be better prepared in game. We do team stuff outside of basketball, like dinner, or going to the Christmas market all together. Little things like that help, but we also hangout by ourselves some which definitely helps’, expressed Bubba Furlong.

photo credit White Wings Hanau

The ex Northwestern Oklahoma State University (NCAA2) center who is totally flashed by Luka Doncic’s 60 point game and is one of his favorite players has had a great supporting cast this season. One of the main scoring options has been young German guard Bruno Albrecht who is averaging 20,3ppg and already showed signs of his talent in Ehingen and Rhondorf keeps being consistent. It will be interesting to see if his game can translate to the Pro A in the future. ‘Bruno can shoot it lights out! And his ability to create his own shot in the one on one has really been successful’, said Bubba Furlong. Two other key supporters have been German Sebastian Brach who is averaging 11,6ppg, 5,8rpg and 4,3apg and ex pro A player Tim Martinez who is averaging 11,0ppg, 3,0rpg and 1,9 apg. ‘Tim & Manny (Sebastian) have been key because they bring great offense and defense every night! Really need guys like that to make a team great’, expressed Bubba Furlong. And where would the White Wings Hanau be now without Bubba Furlong? That is a good question. He never got a chance in the NCAA and then moved to the NCAA 2 where he proved he could be a big time player. Now in the Pro B he is proving that he be a lethal contributor and hardly needed any adjustment time. ‘ I just had to let the game come to me. European basketball is very different than American basketball. Once I let it come to me it was just about putting the ball in the basket’, stated Bubba Furlong. So where does he rank the Pro B in comparison to the NCAA 2 in terms of skill level and the competitive level among teams? ‘ Pro B is a higher level, there’s differences though. In the states it’s about athleticism. Athleticism only gets you so far here. You have to have a high basketball IQ and talent. Athleticism here is just a plus’, added Bubba Furlong. He had a slow start, but then started scoring consistently in game 3 until now. He has understood how he can be successful on a regular basis in the Pro B. ‘I’ve used my size and my mobility to my advantage. Most bigs can’t move, but I’ve never been just a big man. I can dribble, pass, shoot. And I’m not afraid to guard your best players’, warned Bubba Furlong. Currently he is averaging 14,5ppg, 9,5ppg, 2,4apg, 1,7spg and 1,4bpg. He scored 21 points against the Wizards and Leitershofen and has registered 5 double doubles. He is confident he can average a double double this season. ‘I always say it’s hard to find rebounds when there’s a lot of makes. But definitely just got to keep chasing the ball’, stressed Bubba Furlong. Before the season he stated that he wants to become the defensive superior threat to all offensive players, but so far his shot blocking hasn’t been as dominant as it was in school. But he is confident that he will grow in the second half of the season. ‘Shot blocking here is different from in the states just continuing to learn and get better’, commented Bubba Furlong.

photo credit White Wings Hanau

The EPG Baskets Koblenz has been advertising the big showdown of the season weeks ago for the FC Bayern Munich game on December 17th which was nice as they crushed Germany’s most famous club, but really the real showdown of the season is today against the White Wings Hanau. Combined both teams are 20-0, but tonight after 40 minutes, there will only be one winner and one undefeated team. ‘It will be a dog fight. And it will come down to which team makes less mistakes, and who wants it more. We’re sticking to our game plan. We will be ready’, warned Bubba Furlong. The big man is a rim protector and will have his hands full with the talented and quick Koblenz guards like Alani Moore and Marvin Heckel. Did he do anything special when scouting against these skilled players? ‘I scout them like any other players. They’re great players, but I’ve been playing against great players my entire life. They lace their shoes just like I lace mine’, stressed Bubba Furlong. One great match up will be 2017 easyCredit BBL slam dunk champion Brian Butler who is the man with the fancy moves against the Athletic big Bubba Furlong. He definitely knows who Butler is and knows that he will have to sparkle and be ready. ‘I’ve seen his film. Just will come down who wants to win more’, warned Brian Butler. It will definitely be a battle and the EPG Baskets Koblenz will have their hands full. Obviously Bubba Furlong would love to go in 2023 with a big road win and 12-0 record, but does he have any New Year resolutions? ‘Cherish the little things and be better next year than I was this year’, warned Bubba Furlong. If Bubba Furlong is better in 2023 than 2022, then look out, because all Pro B teams will have to do extra in the second half of the season as both he and the White Wings Hanau will continue to want to prove all doubters wrong.


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