Darling and bogeyman: Schröder in Bonn like a pop star
Screaming fans and an almost two-hour autograph tour: Dennis Schröder feels the affection of the basketball fans in Bonn. He leaves questions about the quarrel of the past few weeks without comment.
After turbulent weeks enjoyed Dennis Schröder in Bonn taking a dip in the crowd.
Hundreds of fans screamed for the celebrated German basketball star, who was still signing autographs and patiently taking selfies with children and young people an hour and a half after the end of the game. “The fans are unbelievable again. That’s why I play for the national team, because the people always support us,” said team captain Schröder on Saturday evening after the 87:68 win over Sweden. Not only the fans seemed euphoric, but also the 29-year-old captain: “That’s what you play basketball for. I’d like to give everyone an autograph, but then I’ll probably be here for two hours.”
That’s how it happened. The huge wave of affection did Schröder, about whom heated debates recently revolved, noticeably good. The quarrel with Maximilian Kleber should no longer be a problem on the way to the World Cup in Japan (from August 25). When Schröder was asked again in Bonn about the dissonance and the media hype about the incident, he only said tight-lipped: “No comment.” He had answered all other questions patiently and in detail.
Dispute with NBA colleague Kleber
Schröder’s criticism of NBA professional Kleber had led to him declaring his renunciation of the World Cup. While the captain became a bogeyman for some experts, the association and national coach Gordon Herbert clearly backed him. With the fans – especially the younger ones – he remains the darling.
The victory over Sweden, which was only clear in the final phase, made it clear who the German team can build on next to Schröder this summer. Franz Wagner stood out with his agility, his brother Moritz and Daniel Theis are also planned as guarantors. “We still need a few more training sessions. There’s a lot to improve. It’s good to know that even if we don’t play so well, we’ll find our way to victory,” said Franz Wagner, who was playing for the first time with his Brother played an international match. Their jerseys don’t have Wagner written on them, but rather their first names, based on the Gasol brothers Pau and Marc: Franz and Moritz.
Weiler-Babb not at the World Cup
The dispute over Kleber was also about the so-called three-year plan, according to which the players should commit to the 2022 European Championships, the 2023 World Cup and the 2024 Olympics. Kleber canceled last year. The next personnel decisions made by head coach Herbert showed that bronze at the European Championships does not guarantee a place in the squad: After Nick Weiler-Babb, who is injured, Chris Sengfelder and Jonas Wohlfarth-Bottermann will also not be part of the squad for the World Cup in Asia. The duo was axed that night along with Louis Olinde and Jonas Mattisseck. Herbert only takes 14 professionals to Berlin.
The challenges are now rapidly increasing. After outsiders Sweden, World Cup favorite Canada with some NBA stars is waiting on Wednesday (7.30 p.m. / Magentasport). For the Canadian Herbert it is not only a meeting with his home country, but also with his former team. “It’s interesting for me. It’s always nice to play against a big team. It’s good for us, it will help us,” said the 64-year-old. Herbert was only partially satisfied with the long, bumpy start of the test match against Sweden. “We have a lot of work ahead of us, we mustn’t waste a day.”