Basketball: That’s why Germany became world champions

Basketball: That’s why Germany became world champions

Germany is basketball world champion! You can let these words melt in your mouth, because the title can be celebrated as a sensation without exaggeration. And there is an important reason for that.

It’s a weekend of German sporting extremes: The national soccer team suffered its third defeat in a row with a 4-1 defeat against Japan and a day later the DFB threw out national coach Hansi Flick after two disastrous years. On the same day, Germany wins the final of the Fiba Basketball World Cup 2023 against Serbia and becomes world champion.

One can only hope for the DFB players and their next coach that they followed how their DBB colleagues won the title in Japan, Indonesia and the Philippines – and that they follow their example. On their way to the first gold medal ever won by a German basketball team on the international stage, Dennis Schröder, Franz Wagner and Co. showed what it takes to be successful in team sports: a team.

Germany wins the basketball crown as a team

Anyone who saw how much cohesion, mutual respect, willingness to perform, passion and joy the team of national coach Gordon Herbert presented themselves in the tournament and the preparation games knows what the foundation for the historic title win was. Before every kick-off, the players pushed and celebrated each other in an exuberant ritual in the hallway. During the game, the substitutes cheered the team on non-stop. Everyone who succeeded in something was applauded, everyone was happy for the other. Even a player like David Krämer, who only got a few minutes of playing time in the entire tournament, was always in a good mood and loudly supported his comrades on the field with the other bench warmers.

When NBA star Franz Wagner, one of the top performers, injured his ankle in the opening game against Japan and was only allowed to watch for three games, bundle of energy Isaac Bonga stepped into the breach for him. And when Dennis Schörder played, in his own words, “probably the worst game of my career” in the quarter-finals against Latvia, his teammates compensated for their captain’s weak performance with great morale, a lot of fight and an energetic performance.

“In the difficult moments there was always someone who took a step forward,” said center Johannes Voigtmann after the final victory. “And if you play crap yourself, then the next person comes in and does a good job. That’s just fun?”

And that is another important element of the German triumph: fun. The twelve young men that Herbert had brought into his squad were always noticeable with how much they enjoyed practicing their sport and how much fun they had with each other. Even Magenta reporter Benny Zander felt this when he wanted to interview Andy Obst after winning the title: Krämer, Johannes Thiemann, Mo Wagner, and Maodo Lô burst in, took the microphone away from Zander and interviewed each other. “It’s just fun with the boys,” said Obst, commenting on the action after the others had left and Zander had the microphone back.

Even if there were arguments, like in the game against Slovenia between Schröder and center Daniel Theis, when the captain accused his NBA colleague of a poor performance and was hit by coach Herbert for it, it wasn’t a break in the game, but a wake-up call , which drove the team to even better performance. Afterwards the two friends spoke out and the dispute was forgotten.

After the win against Serbia, Schröder, who was voted the tournament’s most valuable player, made it clear once again why Germany had just won World Cup gold in Manila and what team sports are all about – whether basketball or football. Praised by reporter Zander for his strong performance, the Braunschweiger made it clear: “It wasn’t just one player, it was always the whole team. I don’t want to hear anything about my name anymore. We are a team. And that’s why we won the World Cup .”

Source: Stern

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