By Johnny Askounis/ firstname.lastname@example.org
Devin Booker is back for FC Bayern Munich.
Booker, 32, returned to the German club, four years following his departure. The signing became official Monday, confirming the recent report of Eurohoops on advanced talks with Bayern. Becoming a free agent, he was released by Fenerbahce Beko two weeks ago.
Drawing a similar path from Fener to the Munich outfit, Carsen Edwards will also play for the team coached by Pablo Laso. Other newcomers are Leandro Bolmaro and Sylvain Francisco.
Per the press release: “Book is back! Devin Booker returns to FC Bayern Basketball. The power forward, well-known in Munich, has signed with FC Bayern Basketball for two seasons until 2025. For the 32-year-old American, this marks his second stint with FC Bayern Basketball after a successful first period between 2016 and 2019. He had departed four years ago after winning his second championship title in the red jersey, heading towards Russia. Now, after two seasons with Fenerbahce Istanbul, he is returning.
In the EuroLeague, the experienced 2.03-meter-tall athlete has played a total of 119 games for Bayern, Khimki Moscow, and Fenerbahce, averaging 9.3 points and 4.2 rebounds per game.”
“Back on the winning path quickly”
“It already feels like coming home,” says Booker, who is currently back home in South Carolina with his wife and four kids. “I always knew I would return to Bayern, the only question was when. Now is the perfect moment.”
As the only remaining member from the last two championship teams of 2018 and 2019, alongside captain Vladimir Lucic (and former youngster Nelson Weidemann), “Book” sets the sporting goal for the team under head coach Pablo Laso: “We must try to get back on the winning path as quickly as possible because that’s where Bayern belongs. I know what it takes, and together with Luća (Vladimir Lucic), I will help and motivate the other guys on the court and in the locker room so that we can achieve everything we set out for. I’m really looking forward to it; there was already a fantastic atmosphere around Luća back then.”
Sports Director Daniele Baiesi also draws connections to the past: “They say that a perfect journey describes a circle, with the happiness of a comeback. There isn’t much to say about Devin, he was a key element in Bayern’s growth and has always remained a part of the family. We are happy to welcome him back home.”
Twice a champion with Bayern, once winning the double
Devin Booker joined Munich in 2016 as the MVP of the French Pro A league from Chalon. After high school, he played four years for Clemson University, reaching the NCAA Tournament three times with the Tigers. His professional career started in France, and after a stint in Nancy (then in Pro A) and initial success in the second division (promotion as Finals-MVP with Bourg-en-Bresse), he led Élan Chalon to the 2015/2016 playoff quarterfinals against the eventual champions, Lyon-Villeurbanne (15.1 PpS, 7.6 RpS).
With Bayern, Booker played in the EuroCup during the first two years (12.6 and 13.6 PpS). In the two championship-winning seasons (12.4 and 10.2 PpS), the spectacular forward was undoubtedly one of the fan favorites. In the German BBL, Booker has appeared 113 times (11.1 PpS) for Bayern, making him the 13th-highest scorer in the club’s history.
Pablo Laso: “Devin is a Bayern Munich player”
During his third Bundesliga season, he attracted the interest of financially strong clubs, with Khimki Moscow being the successful bidder (although the club no longer exists). After two years in the EuroLeague with Khimki, he moved on to the perennial title contender Fenerbahce, where he played an increasing role as a versatile defender and on the wing, averaging 24 and 21 minutes per EuroLeague game in the two respective years. In his first year there, he won the Turkish championship.
“I have already discussed my role with Pablo Laso. I can play as a power forward and center, which makes me versatile, and now I am much more experienced,” says Booker.
The new Spanish FCBB coach elaborates: “Devin is a Bayern Munich player and an inside player who can open up the court, rebound athletically, and move quickly in transition. He provides us with versatility, and at the same time, he is someone who knows the city, the club, and the culture. So, he will adapt quickly. He is a fantastic addition to our squad, and I’m sure our fans will love to see him again.”
Devin Booker is married and a father of four children (two of them are seven-year-old twins, and one is eleven years old). His brother Trevor, aged 35, played in the NBA until 2020, appearing in 532 games.”
Photo Credit: EuroleagueBasketball.net