Of the 4 group winners in the Qualifying Round of the FIBA Europe League, 3 of the clubs are Russian. Dynamo Moscow finished Group D tied with Strauss Iscar Nahariya at 11:3, but enough to secure the top spot. Telindus finished their group 6:6, tied with Siroki and Turk Telekom but enough to scrape through to the play-offs.
On the domestic front, Dynamo are in 4th place in the Russian Superleague, trailing Ural Great by 3 points. Oostende have had a difficult time at home and currently lie in 5th position in the table with an 11:7 record.
|Oostende's Christophe Beghin will face a stern test against Dynamo|
Of the two sides, Oostende is the more experienced in club competitions having been a regular participant since the early 90‘s. their most successful season was in 1999 when they made the semi-finals of the Korac Cup, before losing to Spanish side Estudiantes. Current players Matthias Desaever and Jean-Marc Jaumin were both members of that 1999 side.
Dynamo’s participation has been a little more patchy and they have not played since a 1997 appearance in the EuroLeague.
Dynamo have a star studded roster and can rely on the talents of Russian players Andrey Fettisov, Dmitri Domani and Nikolai Padius. Their non-Russian players are also among the best in Europe and include Nikos Ekonomou (GRE), Damir Mrsic (BIH), and Americans Jimmy Oliver and Kenajn Dzons.
Perhaps the most interesting match-up wil be between Oostende’s young up-and-comer Christoph Behgin and the Dynamo forwards Fettisov, Ekonomou and Oliver. Beghin will be outmatched on the experience front, but the 23-year old has shown signs that he can be a top player in Europe and this series could put him on the map.
Both teams have proved to be stronger on the road than at home. Oostende have a 4:2 record in away games while Dynamo are 5:1.
One area where Dynamo struggle is on the boards and they average 30 rpg (20th among all teams), compared to 34.4 rpg for Oostende (4th among all teams).