Braydon Hobbs Adds Spunk To The Special Team Chemistry Of The Giessen 46ers

One of the first things that you notice when you see eye to eye with Braydon Hobbs is his smile. It is one of those warm smiles that anyone can appreciate after a huge win or a pathetic unforgettable loss. Last season the 26 year old 196cm guard had very little to smile about when it came to playing the Giessen 46ers as he departed from the floor as the loser a total of 5 times and lost three times in the Osthalle in Giessen. Sometimes a game can be so long and then when you lose, you remember certain things that not only happened on the court, but also off the court. Perhaps the American was able to remember one of the many Giessen hecklers in the crowd for a time after the 3-0 playoff loss, but now 7 months later Hobbs no longer has to hear an obscene strange German phrases towards him, but now has everyone on his side in the Osthalle as he is playing his first season for the Beko BBL team Giessen 46ers. It really doesn´t matter where Hobbs has played in his career, he has always proved that he has game and put up consistent stats. He played at Bellarmine (NCAA2) from 2008-2012 helping his school win the GLVC tournament in 2010-2011 and the NCAA 2 title in 2011. He turned professional in 2012 and got experience in Australia and with Caceres Basket (Spain-LEB Gold). IN his second season he got added experience playing with Alba Fehervar (Hungary-A Division) playing Eurocup: 10 games: 11.9ppg, 3.1rpg, 3.6apg, 1.7spg, FGP: 40.4%, 3PT: 52.3%; Hungarian League: 32 games: 9.1ppg, 4.2rpg, 3.4apg, Steals-2(2.3spg), FGP: 52.8%, 3PT: 32.7%, FT: 72.7%. Last season he led the rent4office Nuernberg (Germany-ProA) in the semi-finals playing 38 games averaging 11.9ppg, 4.1rpg, Assists-4(5.9apg), Steals-2(1.9spg), FGP: 55.8%, 3PT: 40.8%, FT: 82.4%. Last summer he won an added title with the Mackay Meteors (Australia-QBL, starting five): 18 games: 14.7ppg, 5.8rpg, 4.8apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 51.4%, 3PT: 36.0%, FT: 87.5%. “It feels good to win the championship over there. It’s my second time winning the ship with Mackay. Your ultimate goal, when you play in competitions, is to win the championship and we achieved that goal. Every championship is important. The NCAA was a little bit more challenging because we were playing teams from all over the country. In Australia it was only the state of Queensland we were competing against”, stressed Braydon Hobbs. Winning a title isn´t realistic in Giessen this season, but reaching the playoffs is even though the team´s season goal was to stay in the Beko BBL. Hobbs has had no difficulty getting used to the higher level of the Beko BBL, a high level that he has never played at before, but has obstacles. “The biggest hurdle has probably been adjusting to the speed and physical play of the BBL. We have a lot of players that were in the Pro A last season, so we are all adjusting”, added Braydon Hobbs. Giessen head coach Denis Wucherer has given him much trust as he is the team leader in minutes with 30 and fourth in teams coring, second in rebounds, third in assists and first in three point shooting percentage with 47%. He was instrumental in the big 81-80 win at home against defending Beko BBL champion Bamberg with the game winning assist and will never forget the game. “It’s definitely one of the biggest wins of my pro career. Beating a Euroleague team, during the season, will always be a huge win”, added Braydon Hobbs. Giessen is a team that likes to defend, plays team basketball and has many very talented players and Hobbs is doing a great job holding his own and one of hidden strength is slowly getting unraveled. “I think my ability to make other players around me better, by passing, will transfer best to the BBL. I can get guys in the best position to score the ball and hopefully my passing will help these guys out”, said Braydon Hobbs. Hobbs probably never had as big a smile after the Bamberg win except for maybe his title wins in college and in Australia, but if Giessen can pull off the big coup and win for the third time since 2007 against the Fraport Skyliners, then it will be another smile to remember because Frankfurt belong to the current hottest teams in the league.

After two very long years, but very successful years in the German Pro A which for some of the hardcore Giessen fans probably felt like an eternity and for others a punishment from the basketball God, but the team is finally back in the first league and are playing as good as ever if one remembers their struggles in the previous years before moving down to the Pro A. For some it may have been a risk bringing in less experienced young head coach Denis Wucherer who had previously only had one season of real coaching time as an assistant with FC Bayern Munich, but then again he learned for a short time under one of the cult coaches Dirk Bauermann and that is all he needed as he came to Giessen in 2013 and in two short years has become a very respectable head coach and was recently voted to coach team national at the 2016 German Beko BBL allstar game. In the last two seasons the Giessen 46ers reached the semi-finals in their first season and last season dominated and won the Pro A title as they were one of the top defense teams in the league. Wucherer did a superb job finding the right players in his first season and then keeping a majority for the second season while filling the missing pieces correctly. On the sidelines he was often calm, but was capable of getting into a frenzy and preached good defense and as a players coach knew what he needed from his players and vice versa. In all three seasons, the team has found their roles early and found a team chemistry that has carried them. Giessen is a team that doesn´t have necessarily the most talented players, but each guy does something special and they play together as a team at all times and pride the extra pass which made teams dizzy in the Pro A. The club held 6 figures from last season and have two from their first Pro A season with captain TJ DiLeo who is the ultimate team player and hard worker Benjamin Lischka and held from last years team the underrated Cameron Wells who remembers dueling against the planet´s hottest player at the moment Steph Curry in college, streaky shooter Eric Palm, athletic high flying player from Cuba Yorman Polas and experienced big man Bjoern Schoo. They added new parts to the puzzle this season with top notch all rounder Braydon Hobbs, forward Ethan Wragge who has experience in the top league in Europe Endesa, Suleihman Braimoh who has been a pleasant surprise and gone past expectations already, insurance experienced guard Achmadschah Zazai that has played for 12 organizations, young German Maurice Pluskota and recently got two big signings with 9 time Bamberg title winner Karsten Tadda and young center talent Gabriel Olaseni. At the moment the team is holding their own at the 10th position with a record of 5-7 and knocking at the playoff door. The club plays a fast style of basketball and are small inside averaging only 29 rebounds per game, but the signing of Gabriel Olaseni will improve that. The club gave the Beko BBL its first upset of the season sending Bamberg home embarrassed with a massive 81-80 win at home. The club always plays tough and so far have been unlucky as they lost four games in crunch time by one, four, three and four points and with 2-3 wins more would now be fighting Frankfurt and Munich for standings position in the playoffs. The clubs goal is too stay in the league, but if they make the playoffs then Denis Wucherer will already get a monument in Giessen after only his third season there.

 

 

 

In the last years, The Skyliners have dominated the Hessen derby posting a 13-3 record. Frankfurt has demonstrated a special confidence and calmness that makes the Osthalle in Giessen look more like their own personal lounge area than a hostile Giessen playground with naughty kids throwing sticks and stones. Who could forget the onslaught before Christmas 2005 as Frankfurt routed Giessen 96 to 63 with seven three pointers from Desmond Ferguson. “I had a good rhythm going on in that game and my teammates made a good job getting me the ball. I wasn´t able to find my rhythm much while I played in Frankfurt for various reasons, but that game was probably my highlight playing there”, added ex Skyliner Desmond Ferguson. Another time under the guidance of Charles Barton, Frankfurt won a nail bitter 73 to 67 as Frankfurt showed nerves of steel in the dwindling minutes of the fourth quarter. Another time Frankfurt won a tight game, even though it seemed like they were never in any real danger of losing as Derrick Allen led the team with 19 points and an energized Alex King flew into the arena with a specially made superman cape and steered the team off the bench scoring in double figures. Who could forget the buzzer beater by Karlsruhe German Rouven Roessler in 2007? Well that game winning shot that beat Frankfurt was long ago, and Roessler still has the shot dancing in his dreams. “I remember that buzzer beater as if it was yesterday”, said ex Giessen 46er Rouven Roessler. . In the 2008-2009 season, The Deutsche Bank Skyliners won in Giessen 75-57 getting 19 points form Lorenzo Gordon. In Frankfurt, they pounded Giessen 93-72. In 2009-2010, Frankfurt won at home 80-69 getting 22 points from Derrick Allen. The last game against Giessen was a nail bitter win by Frankfurt in Giessen which was won 69-68 as Pascal Roller won the game with 13 seconds to play with two free throws. In the first meeting of the 2010-2011 season Frankfurt won 82-64 as Giessen was outscored 48-21 in the second half. The Deutsche Bank Skyliners were led by Dashaun Wood with 21 points and Roger Powell added 18 points. In the second meeting in Frankfurt, Giessen lost 81-62 as Dashaun Wood scored 26 points. In the 2011-2012 season the two teams split the season series as the Fraport Skyliners won in Giessen 64-56 as Jermareo Davidson had 16 points and Michael Thompson 13 points. In the return date, the LTi Giessen 46ers got revenge winning in Frankfurt 78-65. In the 2012-2013 season Frankfurt won in the Osthalle 79-59 as they were led by Zach Peacock with 23 points and Ted Scott and Dawan Robinson added 16 points apiece while Giessen was led by Laquan Prowell with 19 points. IN the return game in Frankfurt where Giessen was fighting financial problems came to Frankfurt with a totally depleted roster losing 95-57 as Frankfurt was led by ex Giessen forward Zac Peacock with 23 points and two other ex Giessen players Ryan brooks and Laquan Prowell combined for 34 points. It was also the first Beko BBL minutes for Max Merz.The Fraport Skyliners come into the game with a two game losing streak in the Beko BBL, but ahuge win in Europe cup play where they got bacj down too offensive basics and heightened their self confidence while the Giessen 46ers are reeling of a big loss at home against FC Bayern Munich. Giessen doesn´t have as much equal and talented strength inside as Frankfurt, but very quick guards and wings and just a roster full of hard workers. Giessen will have to find a way to stop the current potent inside game of Johannes Voigtmann and Danilo Barthel while Frankfurt stop the Giessen transition game to be successful.

The Giessen 46ers kept and are led by TJ DiLeo who is a 25 year old 190cm guard from Cinnaminson, New Jersey that is playing his third professional season and third with the Giessen 46ers. AS a rookie with Giessen he played 38 games averaging 10.2ppg, 2.8rpg, 2.5apg, 1.3spg, FGP: 48.8%, 3PT: 34.4%, FT: 74.6%, and in his second season played 38 games: 9.9ppg, 4.1rpg, 3.9apg, 1.6spg, FGP: 50.3%, 3PT: 36.6%, FT: 82.7%. He played college ball at Temple (NCAA) playing a total of 126 NCAA games winning the Atlantic 10 in 2009 and 2010. He is an unselfish player that sees team before himself and on the defensive side can defend the positions 1-3. Yorman Polas is a 30 year old 192cm swingman that has the Cuban/German citizenship and played for Camaguey (TNA) from 2005-2012 before coming to Germany. He started his career in Germany with Muenchen Basket (Germany-Regionalliga) averaging 25,4ppg, then played for Crailsheim and last season with Giessen played 37 games: 10.7ppg, 5.7rpg, 2.0apg, Steals-5(1.8spg), FGP: 51.8%, 3PT: 31.8%, FT: 57.2%. He is a hard worker that brings unending athleticism and defends with a passion. The team also held on to Cameron Wells who is a 27 year old 186cm point guard from Houston, Texas that is playing his fourth professional season. AS a rookie he played in Holland with Landstede Basketbal Zwolle (Holland-Eredivisie) playing 36 games: 14.0ppg, 3.9rpg, Assists-4(3.6apg), Steals-1(2.4spg), FGP: 45.5%, 3PT: 30.0%, FT: 78.1%. Two seasons ago he got Beko BBL experience with the Walter Tigers Tuebingen (Germany-BBL): 29 games: 6.0ppg, 2.0rpg, 1.6apg, FGP: 43.1%, 3PT: 31.6%, FT: 82.7%. Last season for Giessen he played 36 games: 12.3ppg, 3.5rpg, 3.8apg, 1.6spg, FGP: 55.6%, 3PT: 39.8%, FT: 75.3%. He played at Citadel (NCAA) from 2007-2011 playing a total of 127 NCAA games. His biggest strength is his speed and can always cause havoc when penetrating and can create his own shot. The team also held German Benjamin Lischka who is a 26 year old 204cm forward that is playing his third season with Giessen and last season played 33 games: 7.8ppg, 3.6rpg, 1.0apg, FGP: 50.6%, 3PT: 25.4%, FT: 72.5%. He started his career with VFB Giessen in 2005 and then moved to Lich and played two seasons with Kirchheim and Crailsheim. He is a physical player that will bang, but won´t shy away from stepping out and hitting the three. The club also kept Eric Palm who is a 28 year old 188cm guard from Machesney Park, Illinois that is playing his sixth professional season and third in Germany and second with Giessen. Last season for Giessen he played 38 games: 10.2ppg, 1.8rpg, 1.3apg, FGP: 39.8%, 3PT: 40.7%, FT: 86.0%. Two seasons ago he played for BV Chemnitz 99 (Germany-ProA) playing 30 games: 15.8ppg, 2.4rpg, 2.0apg, 1.3spg, FGP: 48.2%, 3PT: 39.8%, FT: 84.1%. He started his basketball career in 2005 with McKendree (NAIA) where he played until 2009. In his first two professional seasons he played in Iceland. His biggest strength is his shooting. The club also held on to experienced German big man Bjoern Schoo who is a 34 year old 213cm center playing his second season with Giessen. He has 3 years of college basketball experience with Northern St. (NCAA2). As a professional he played for USC Freiburg, TUS Lichterfelde Berlin, Kaiserslautern Braves (ProA), Hannover, USC Heidelbergand, Kirchheim, Koln and Phoenix Hagen. He brought 34 Beko BBL games experience to Giessen. He is a classic center that rebounds and can block shots well.

New players arriving to the Giessen 46ers this season besides Braydon Hobbs were Suleiman Braimoh who is a 26 year old 203cm forward from New York that is playing his fifth professional season and first with Giessen. Last season he played for Huracanes de Tampico (Mexico-LNBP) playing 46 games: 20.1ppg, 8.2rpg, 1.9apg, 1.4spg, Blocks-5(1.3bpg), FGP: 56.1%, 3PT: 31.5%, FT: 72.5% and for the IMS Payroll Hawks (New Zealand-NBL, starting five): 16 games: 17.8ppg, 8.6rpg, 1.8apg, 1.2spg, 1.1bpg, FGP: 54.5%, 3PT: 38.9%, FT: 60.4%. He played at Rice (NCAA) from 2007-2011 playing a total of 124 NCAA games. As a professional he has played in Qatar, D-league, and Japan. He can score and rebound well for his size and can present a match up problem as he has strength and quickness. The team also added Ethan Wragge who is a 25 year old 201cm forward from Eden Prairie, Minnesota playing hiss econd professional season. As a rookie he played for Bilbao Basket (Spain-Liga Endesa): 31 games: 3.2ppg. He played at Creighton(NCAA) from 2009-2014 playing a total of 149 NCAA games. His strength is his shooting and he can spread the floor. Karsten Tadda is a 27 year old 190cm guard that played 8 seasons with the Brose Baskets Bamberg winning 5 Beko BBL league titles and recently joined Giessen. He brings team basketball to the court, can hit the three in important moments and is a great defender. His experience is his most valuable asset for the young team. Gabriel Olaseni is a 24 year old 211cm center from England that is a rookie. He started the season with the Brose Baskets Bamberg playing 9 games: 4.3ppg, 3.1rpg; Euroleague: 5 games: 2.4ppg, 2.8rpg. He played at Iowa(NCAA) from 2011-2015 playing a total of 117 NCAA games. He is a high energy player that is a beast around the rim, but also has a nice mid distance jumper and is a solid shot blocker. Achmadschah Zazai is a 29 year old 175 cm guard that has the German/Afghani citizenship and is the classic example of a basketball globetrotter having played for 13 professional teams and also played in Denmark. He has Beko BBL experience . with Ludwigsburg, Braunschweig, Artland and Braunschweig and brings 115 Beko BBL games experience. He is a feisty defender and on offense exceptional of getting in the lane and scoring or creating. Maurice Pluscota is a 23 year old 208cm center playing for his third Beko BBL team. He already played BBL as an 18 year old with Bremerhaven in the 2010-2011 season. He played 5 Beko BBL games for Bremerhaven, then played for Cuxhaven(Pro A) and 33 Beko BBL games for Braunschweig the last two seasons. He is a physical big man that can score and rebound and still developing.

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