Coming off one of its best-ever offensive performances in the EuroLeague, Bayern will try to keep its perfect home record intact when it welcomes Khimki Mosco Region. Dating back to last season, Bayern has won seven of its last eight home games in the competition, including a 104-63 thrashing of LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne last week. Going into this clash, both teams hold 2-1 records, and for both teams, the only loss so far came on the road against CSKA Moscow.
Bayern is a perfect 6-0 all-time against Khimki, including winning all of their four EuroLeague meetings between 2015 and last season. The last time Khimki visited Audi Dome, Nihad Dedovic scored 14, and Vladimir Lucic had 13 points in a 72-65 win. In those four games against Khimki, Bayern has also set two club single-game records, both in the 2015-16 season, registering 15 steals in 69-60 home triumph, and collecting 49 rebounds in a 70-81 road win.
Khimki's Stefan Jovic and Devin Booker arrived this summer from Bayern. Booker spent the last three seasons with Bayern, and Jovic played the last two. They played under Coach Dejan Radonjic and were teammates with much of the current Bayern roster in helping the team win back-to-back German League titles. So far, Booker has shined in a starting role, while Jovic has missed the last two games with a back injury.
Coming "home" to Munich, where he spent the last three seasons, will be a special occasion for Booker. He has been one of the cornerstones of Khimki's early success, averaging 12.0 points and leading the team with 5.7 rebounds through three games, but he now goes against Greg Monroe, a man who took over in Bayern's paint. Monroe has been a monster, posting 10.3 points, ranks third in the league in rebounding with 8.7 per game, plus delivers 3.7 assists and 1.3 blocks, and it should be a great heavyweight battle between the two on Thursday night.
Keys to victory: Bayern
Away from the spotlight, Bayern had been playing good defensively so far this season. By holding opponents to 68.7 points per game, Bayern is the only team in the league allowing below 70 points, and on the home floor that averages drop to 63.5. Bayern has done a great job so far forcing a low-percentage shooting from its opponents, and the team will need to continue that trend against Alexey Shved and the rest of a dangerous shooting Khimki squad.
Keys to victory: Khimki
Khimki has entered the season having problems with player injuries, and coach Rimas Kurtinaitis has been forced to use shortened rotation. In such circumstances, only nine different players have scored a basket through three games, and only five are scoring more than 6.5 points per game. Facing one of the league's best defenses to start the season, Khimki will need more players to step up on the offense, and take the load off Shved's shoulders.