Berlin (dpa / bb) – At Alba Berlin there was absolute satisfaction after the quick semi-finals in the basketball Bundesliga. “We are very happy. Especially about the way. It’s unique,” said sporting director Himar Ojeda. With the brilliant 103:70 victory at Brose Bamberg on Thursday evening, the Berliners have mastered the best-of-five series in the quarter-finals with a 3-0 win.
Alba didn’t want to understand that as a statement towards the championship. “Every playoff series is different. We are better than Bamberg and were the clear favourites,” said the sporting director. Knowing full well that the Berliners will face a completely different opponent in the semifinals with the EnBW giants Ludwigsburg. The only team in the league against which Alba has lost both games this season. The Ludwigsburg team also won their quarter-final series against ratiopharm Ulm 3-0. “They have a strong defense, it will be very difficult for us,” warned coach Israel González.
The Berliners now have a lot of time until the first semi-final game on Friday next week. “It’s not ideal. Maybe it’s too many days. But we have to make the best of it and see it positively,” said Ojeda. But there is still time for the top performers Luke Sikma and Johannes Thiemann, who were missing on Thursday, to get fit again. Otherwise, the team must “try to keep the rhythm with training,” said Ojeda.
Because he was right in the quarter-finals – especially in the last game with 19 successful distance throws. “We had a lot of rhythm, it clicked extremely offensively,” said playmaker Maodo Lo. Alba shone at times with spectacular basketball. “It’s also the result of our work all year, maybe even the last few years. It was a great performance. You can see that this team really enjoys playing basketball,” said Ojeda happily.
The Berliners had finished the main round of the BBL first and went into the playoffs as favorites. Already in February Alba secured the cup victory. Now the team wants to achieve the third championship title in a row.
© dpa-infocom, dpa:220520-99-364556/2