“These are the moments that every basketball player lives for”
After losing eight finals in their club history, Bonn’s basketball players celebrate their first title by winning the Champions League. TJ Shorts excels in this. He should now hardly be able to save himself from offers.
DTJ Shorts wanted to share his moment of greatest success with his mother. The Telekom Baskets Bonn point guard climbed onto the stands of the arena in Malaga and buried his tear-streaked face in the arms of Darlene Longshorts. Mother Shorts is considered her son’s biggest critic and traveled from California especially for the Final Four of the Champions League.
“These are the moments that every basketball player lives for. Those are the moments you work towards from day one of the summer,” said Timothy Neocartes Shorts II, the full name of the basketball pro, after the game. “It doesn’t feel real right now.”
With 29 points, Shorts led the Bonn team in the final to 77:70 over Hapoel Jerusalem and thus to the title in the Fiba Basketball Champions League. After five lost German championships and three lost cup finals, the Bonn team won a title for the first time in their 28-year club history.
Shorts visibly savored the final moments of the final. The guard dribbled down the clock in the last few seconds, after the final siren he took the ball in his hands, sank to the ground and let his tears flow freely. A little later, the 1.75 meter short playmaker from Telekom Baskets Bonn was buried by his teammates. They knew who to thank. Later, Shorts was also allowed to cut one of the basket nets off the ring as a memento.
Title collector shorts
Shorts’ season so far seems unbelievable: the American was voted the most valuable player in the basketball Bundesliga. The day before the European Cup final, Shorts also received the Champions League season-to-date MVP award. And after the final success, the playmaker was also awarded the best player of the final tournament. After 21 points in the 69:67 in the semifinals against the hosts Malaga, Shorts followed up with 29 points in the final, in the seven-year history of the competition no player has hung up in a final.
Despite the gala performance of his playmaker, Tuomas Iisalo highlighted the team. “I don’t think there is a better collective in European basketball,” said Bonn’s head coach, for whom it is also the first title of his career. “I’m already looking forward to when we meet again in 20 years and get drunk in the Bahamas.”
From home, Stefan Holz congratulated the success of German basketball. “This success of one of our clubs also makes it clear that our clubs, our league and German basketball in general are making great progress in all areas,” said the Managing Director of the Basketball Bundesliga on the Bonn success. The Bonn fans also promoted the sport in Malaga. After their team’s historic victory, the Telekom supporters applauded the losing fans from Jerusalem for several minutes.
For Shorts, the Final Four was another opportunity to showcase themselves on the big European stage. His contract in Bonn is expiring, and the point guard is already in great demand. After his masterpiece in Malaga, even teams from the higher-class Euroleague are likely to submit their offers.
Shorts declined to comment on his future after the triumph. “I think the next step is to drink something cold, maybe some water, rest, a little celebration with the team,” said the Bonn star when asked if he wanted to pitch his tents in Bonn after the season. “These things in the future are uncontrollable. You can’t think about that in moments like that.” Then Shorts disappeared into the catacombs to his celebrating teammates.