17 October, 2023
05 May, 2024
54 Thomas Kennedy (BONN)
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Group J: Defending champs Bonn claim homecourt advantage in Quarter-Finals

MIES (Switzerland) - Telekom Baskets Bonn changed their team completely over the summer, but the championship-winning mentality remains. On Wednesday, the defending BCL champions won their Round of 16 group after a road success in an all-German battle against MHP RIESEN Ludwigsburg.

It was their fourth matchup with Ludwigsburg in all competitions this season, and their fourth win, as well. Two of them came in the BCL, one in the German Cup, and another one in the easyCredit Basketball Bundesliga.

The latest one fits the pattern perfectly, as all four Bonn wins over MHP RIESEN were by 5 points or fewer. 

Ludwigsburg needed to get a 5-point win to overtake Bonn at the top of the Group J standings, and they held the magical margin once during the night.

But for more than 26 minutes, the hosts were the ones trailing on Wednesday.

Bonn won 85-81, to finish the Round of 16 at 5-1, two wins clear of everybody else in the group. In fact, Unicaja (6-0) were the only team with a better record among the 16 teams in this phase.

# Team P W L % For Agt +/- FA AA  
1 BONN Telekom Baskets Bonn (1) 6 5 1 83.3 500 466 34 83.3 77.7 11
2 LUD MHP RIESEN Ludwigsburg (1) 6 3 3 50.0 507 479 28 84.5 79.8 9
3 JDA JDA Bourgogne Dijon 6 2 4 33.3 458 490 -32 76.3 81.7 8
4 GALA Galatasaray EKMAS 6 2 4 33.3 516 546 -30 86 91 8

Glynn Watson had a team-high 17 points for Bonn and Savion Flagg added 16, both of them off the bench. Thomas Kennedy was the best of coach Roel Moors's starters, with 15 points and 9 boards, helping Bonn to a +12 edge in points from the paint.

Silas Melson scored 23 for Ludwigsburg, tying his BCL season-high, while hitting 5 three-pointers. Jayvon Graves' run of 20-point home games ended, as Bonn held Ludwigsburg's go-to guy to 16 points.

Bonn will play in the Quarter-Finals for only the second time in their history, following up on their title-winning campaign last year. By winning the group, they avoided facing the other group winners, Unicaja, Lenovo Tenerife or UCAM Murcia.

"It's very dangerous to talk about easier teams, at this stage I think all teams are very, very solid," Bonn's playcaller said.

"But of course we knew that if we were second we would have to go to Spain. I think the biggest thing for us is that we have home court advantage, and we'll see what the draw says."

Ludwigsburg made it back to the Quarter-Finals for the fourth time. The previous three trips to the elite eight were under coach John Patrick, making this a famous first final phase for coach Josh King.

In the other Group J game of the day, JDA Bourgogne Dijon defeated Galatasaray EKMAS 85-76.

Allan Dokossi had 16 points and 18 rebounds, tying the BCL record for most rebounds in a single game this season.

He also tied the all-time mark in offensive boards, with 11 on the night, joining four other players in BCL history.