Author: Manuel Schust

Listen to German Hoops!

Sick and tired of reading long, detailed reports about german basketball? We got something for you! Soon you will be able to just sit down, relax and listen to the German Hoops Talk. Manuel Schust and Miles Schmidt-Scheuber decided to start one of the first podcasts that covers german basketball in english. Later this week episode #1 will be released. We will talk about the upcoming BBL Play-Offs. In the meantime, BBL topscorer Phil Scrubb says Hi!



Throwback Interview with Ilian Evtimov

Technology is moving fast. It may be just a couple of years ago, but there was a time when Basketball Bundesliga games could not be watched online. Streaming games live was too expensive or technically not possible. Nowadays all you have to do to watch every Basketball Bundesliga game is to subscribe to Telekom Basketball, pay 10 Euros per month and enjoy every game live and re-live. But there was a time in the early years of this millennium when basketbal fans had to sit in front of their computers and watch the live score reload every thirty seconds. The alternative for that was listening to radio broadcasts. In Germany Miles Schmidt-Scheuber was one of the first pioneers, who drove around Germany and broadcasted games live via webradio. He is still around and last year broadcasted his 500th game. From 2006 until 2013 he was host of the first ever weekly Basketball show on German radio. The two hour show featured game analysis and interviews with basketball players. In February 2009 he had a special show with former Frankfurt Skyliners player Ilian Evtimov. The bulgarian-french basketball player came to the broadcasting center in Heusenstamm (small city close to Frankfurt/Hesse) and was interviewed for about an hour. German Hoops proudly presents the interview on Ilian’s 35th birthday:

Quo vadis Alba Berlin?

After firing Ahmed Caki Alba Berlin looked desperate and noone thought they could compete with powerhouse FC Bayern Munich in the quaterfinals of the BBL Playoffs. But after a devestating loss in game 1 (95:68) Alba bounced back and made Bayern work extremely hard to reach the semifinals. Even though Alba Berlin ultimately lost 3-1 to Munich, the team somehow managed to win back the hearts of their supporters and earn the respect of the whole german basketball community.

Interim coach Thomas PĂ€ch, who took over after Caki was fired, brought back the spirit and passion the team lacked for most of the season. Alba’s twitter hashtag #mitleibundseele (transl.: with body and soul) finally made sense for the first time this season. One has to wonder why it took so long for the players to break free and play with the kind of energy and effort they showed against Munich. Was it all Caki’s fault that Alba struggled after a 7-game winning streak in December and never fully recovered throughout the season? First of all one has to mention that Ahmed Caki seemed very unfortunate as the team had to handle so many injuries over the course of the season. Just remember: Brandon Ashley, who should have been a keyplayer on Alba’s frontcourt, decided to leave the club before the season even started. Malcolm Miller broke his hand at the end of the preparation and missed the first nine games of the season. That’s two starters out before the season even started. When the team finally seemed to have found their rhythm Peyton Siva, with whom Alba had a 14-5 record, had to deal with a stubborn adductor injury that made him miss most of the second half of the season. Without Siva the team finished the BBL regular season with a miserable 4-9 record. Then just days before the start of the Playoffs Alba’s most important offensive player Dragan Milosavljević suffered a season-ending injury to his elbow. But bad luck aside, retrospectively hiring Caki seems like a big misunderstanding.


Dirk Bauermann returns to the BBL

After I finished reading “Teamplayer”, a biography about legendary american head-coach Pat Elzie, I was looking for some new basketball-related books. Unfortunately there are just a handful of german basketball biographies available and I thought that I already had read all of them. But when I scrolled through some related books on amazon I found something I had missed: Dirk Bauermann “Mission Erfolg. Meine Vision, mein Plan, mein Weg” [engl. translation: Dirk Bauermann ‘Mission success. My vision, my plan, my way].
Somewhere in the back of my mind I was aware of the fact that Bauermann had released a book, but I was never that interested in reading it. I saw excerpts of the text and simply felt that it was probably written on advice from a public relations office.
Published in 2012, it is still available on hardcover for 20 Euros. Obviously the book did not sell very well as it never even made it to a paperback version. And at first glance, one may wonder why. Dirk Bauermann is the most successful and most famous German basketball coach. I would even say that when it comes to basketball personalities recognized by the average sports fan in Germany he is right behind Dirk Nowitzki and Dennis Schröder. Nine BBL-championships and seven cup-titles with Leverkusen and Bamberg are on his rĂ©sumĂ© and at the EuroBasket 2005, he led Germany to an unforgettable and  sensational silver medal. But Bauermann’s reputation suffered a lot after his last successful run with Bamberg. He could not fulfill the high expectations of Bayern Munich and was fired by the club in September 2012 – just seven months after the release of the book.
Ever since Bauermann has worked in different places (Poland, Lithuania, Russia, Iran), but never found a new home and was not really successful. Somehow the former head-coach of the German national team was off the radar. Whenever a BBL-club was looking for a new head-coach and some names came up, it seemed like no one was thinking about him. The way his teams had played in the past and his whole coaching philosphy did not seem well suited for the modern BBL basketball. Whatever he was doing in the middle-east as head-coach of the Iranian national team, no one seemed to miss him around the league.
The publisher of his book must have thought the same as there is a really cheap e-book version for just 1,49 €. Of course I had to give it a try.