FC Bayern Munich enters this Turkish Airlines EuroLeague season coming off its best performance ever in 2020-21 when it became the first German team to reach the playoffs. Many of its main assets from last season have moved elsewhere, but Bayern is back strong to try to, at least, match its success.
While Nick Weiler-Babb, Nihad Dedovic and Zan Sisko remain in the backcourt, Bayern made a few moves over the summer to bring in some scoring power. Corey Walden reunites with Coach Andrea Trinchieri after a strong season with Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade. Ognjen Jaramaz also played under Trinchieri in Belgrade a couple of seasons ago and has come to Munich to strengthen the guard position. Sharpshooter Andreas Obst arrives from ratiopharm Ulm after averaging 11.0 points in the 7DAYS EuroCup last season, while Darrun Hilliard landed from CSKA Moscow, which he helped reach the Final Four. Young guns Joshua Obiesie and Jason George will provide depth in the backcourt for Bayern. The German team also brought in more experience at small forward with DeShaun Thomas, who will be playing his seventh EuroLeague season.
All-EuroLeague First Team selection Vladimir Lucic will remain the main threat for Bayern in the frontcourt and he will be backed by Paul Zipser, who also had his best season in 2020-21 before he suffered a brain hemorrhage in June during the German League playoffs. He should be back and ready to battle. Augustine Rubit is back in Germany for his third EuroLeague season after averaging 8.1 points with Zalgiris Kaunas in 2020-21. Marvin Ogunsipe returns from two years on loan at Hamburg Towers, ready to contribute from the start, as will be Gavin Schilling, a rebounding ace who shined in Germany last season. At center, Bayern has brought in valuable EuroLeague experience with Othello Hunter, who will play his ninth season on the top European stage. The team has also retained Leon Radosevic, an 11-season EuroLeague veteran who will play his fourth straight season in Munich after signing a new contract over the summer.
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Corey Walden comes to Munich with a difficult task: making the fans forget about Wade Baldwin IV, who moved to Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz during the summer. Walden knows how to play under Coach Trinchieri and he had a solid EuroLeague debut season with Crvena Zvezda averaging 10.5 points, 1.8 rebounds and 2.3 assists in 30 appearances in 2020-21. He averaged 39% from beyond the arc and 9.9 PIR in his 30 games, which makes him a reliable option for Coach Trinchieri on the offensive end. Walden also has the built-in advantage of playing alongside his old Partizan Belgrade teammate Ognjen Jaramaz Bayern has operated as a unit when it has been more successful and there's no denying that Walden will be expected to be an important piece in that unit.
Bayern comes off its most successful EuroLeague season ever, so matching the outcome in 2021-22 will be hard, at the very least. Coach Trinchieri will have to rebuild the team chemistry that worked so well last season, but there are more than enough players remaining from last year to have kept most of that. Bayern will have four of its first five games on the road, so if the team wants to have the momentum from the very beginning, it will have to snag road wins at places like Tel Aviv, Kazan, St Petersburg and Kaunas.