Deutscher Meister 2023

German champion 2023 – Ulmer win their first championship

Deutscher Meister 2023 – Ulmer holen erste Meisterschaft

It's 10:34 p.m. and time seems to stand still. A loud horn sounds and the 2022/23 season of the easyCredit BBL comes to an end. The arena is filled with cheering fans because the ratiopharm ulm team has just won its first German championship in the club's history. In a hard-fought game in the thrilling series against Telekom Baskets Bonn, the Swabians won 74:70, with an impressive 18-0 run at the start of the last quarter paving the way to victory. Yago dos Santos, with 25 points and 8 assists, is named Most Valuable Player of the Finals.

Course of the game and turning point: In a rousing atmosphere in the ratiopharm Arena, Ulm started the game strongly. Although the Baskets have difficulties at first, they soon find their rhythm, both defensively and offensively. Despite frequent free throw opportunities for the Swabians, Bonn's individual actions managed to maintain their narrow lead (21:23, 10th minute).

Led by Yago dos Santos, the Uulmers started the second quarter with an impressive 20:6 run, which was not interrupted by a timeout by coach Tuomas Iisalo (41:29, 16th minute). While dos Santos and Brandon Paul mainly scored for the home team, the Bonn team distributed their offense evenly and came close again by halftime (43:41, 20th minute).

After the break, Bonn continued their strong defensive performance. Coach Iisalo finds a formation that allows them to react flexibly to all matchups and prevent long-range throws. This gives the Rhinelanders enough momentum to turn the game around, although they cannot reach the magical ten-point mark (51:59, 30th minute).

But Ulm shows its fighting strength in the final quarter. Dos Santos and his team start an 18-0 run, which the Baskets can only break after more than six minutes (69:59, 36th minute). Although Bonn didn't give up and shortened the score again (72:67, 38th minute), dos Santos controlled the game and led his team to victory. The clock ticks down inexorably, and despite several missed attempts by Bonn, the victory for Ulm remains unchallenged; the final siren is covered by orange cheers!

Statistics: The Ulm team scored twelve field goals in the first half, each of which resulted in an assist. In the end, 19 of their 21 goals were assisted.

The Baskets get 16 offensive rebounds, but can only score seven points from them. The Ulm team used their seven offensive rebounds effectively and converted them into 13 points.

Duel in focus: Yago dos Santos against TJ Shorts... Two dominant players in their positions who shape the events of the series. Shorts, the MVP of the main round, fought the defeat with 19 points, eight rebounds and six assists, but dos Santos had more influence overall on the fourth game. With 25 points and eight assists, the Brazilian narrowly missed a double-double.

First-time Brazilian Finals MVP: Yago dos Santos is the first Brazilian player to be named Finals MVP since the award's inception in 2005. He succeeds Uruguay's Jayson Granger, who was named the 2021 Finals Most Valuable Player. Coach Anton Gavel was the first German player to receive this award in 2013. In total, the award went to US players eleven times and once to the Frenchman Fabien Causeur, who played for Real Madrid in 2017.

True words: "We had our momentum at the right time, in the playoffs, which brought us this far. This victory is deserved," said Anton Gavel after the game. "For many of us, in the club and in our environment, it is the first title. This victory is also for Andi Klee, who unfortunately can no longer be with us."

Anton Gavel: The 38-year-old belongs to an exclusive group. Besides him, only Sasa Obradovic managed to win the German championship both as a coach (2006, Cologne) and as a player (1997, Berlin).

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