Alba Berlin

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ALBA Berlin
ALBA Berlin logo
Nickname Berlin Albatrosse
Leagues Basketball Bundesliga
Founded 1991; 26 years ago (1991)
History ALBA Berlin
Arena Mercedes-Benz Arena
Arena Capacity 14,500[1]
Location Berlin, Germany
Team colors Yellow, Yellow, Navy, Blue
President Dieter Hauert
Team manager Marco Baldi
Head coach Aito Garcia Reneses
Championships 1 FIBA Korać Cup
8 German Championships
9 German Cups
3 German Champions Cups
Retired numbers 2 (4, 12)
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Home jersey
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Team colours
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Away jersey
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Team colours
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Alternate jersey
Team colours
Team colours

Alba Berlin, officially stylised as ALBA Berlin, (also Berlin Albatrosse), is a prominent German professional basketball club that is based in Berlin, Germany. The club was founded in 1991, and is today the largest German national basketball club by membership figures. Alba Berlin hosts its home games at the Mercedes-Benz Arena Berlin and competes in the German League and the Euroleague or the Eurocup.

After winning eight German Championships, nine German Cups, three German Supercups, and the FIBA Korać Cup in 1995, ALBA Berlin is considered to be the most successful German basketball team, both domestically and internationally. With an average attendance of more than 10,000 fans per game in a season, it is also one of the most popular basketball clubs in Europe. In 2013, ALBA was portrayed in the ESPN documentary series Basketball Capitals. In 2014, the club was the first German basketball team to beat a reigning NBA champion, the San Antonio Spurs.


1991–2000: Foundation and first championships[edit]

Alba Berlin traces its history back to the BG Charlottenburg, a basketball club in western Berlin which was founded in 1989. In 1991, when the global recycling company, Alba AG, agreed to a significant basketball sponsorship, BG Charlottenburg changed its name to Alba Berlin.

Shortly thereafter, under the direction of head coach Faruk Kulenović, Alba Berlin became runner-up at the German Championship. In 1993, the Serbian Svetislav Pešić took over as coach, and the club gained successes that no other German basketball team had previously accomplished. Winning the Korać Cup in 1995 was the first international title of a German club team in basketball.

In 1996, shortly after moving the club from the Sömmeringhalle to the Max-Schmeling-Halle, Alba Berlin finally beat series champion Bayer Leverkusen and won its long-awaited first German Championship. In addition to winning the Korać Cup and other successes at the European level, in his seven-year career as head coach, Pešić won four German championships and one German Cup.

2000–2008: Professionalization and national success[edit]

Under head coach Emir Mutapčić the team recorded three German championships and two German Cup victories, but particularly at the European level no significant progress could be made. As a reaction to the time without titles, the team was largely rebuilt for each new season. In 2004 and 2005, Berlin eventually was kicked out of the national playoffs semi-final series. Organizationally, the club created the new position of team manager, which was occupied by Henning Harnisch. Further, the professional section of the club was transformed into a GmbH on September 1, 2005.

In the season 2005–06, under new coach Henrik Rödl, Alba Berlin won another German Cup. As winner of the regular season, the team advanced to the finals series of the championship, in which they lost to RheinEnergie Köln. Köln was coached by Saša Obradović, who had helped Berlin win the FIBA Korać Cup in 1995. The following season, 2006–07, however, Berlin was once again winner of the regular season but was eliminated in the quarter finals by the Artland Dragons. This event triggered the dismissal of Rödl and the signing of a new head coach Luka Pavićević, followed by another major remodeling of the team. After injury problems in the preparation and the course of the season the season 2007–08, (including the loss of Goran Jeretin for the entire season and Aleksandar Rašić for the play-offs) in January 2008 Berlin took advantage of the insolvency of the Cologne 99ers and signed their major players Immanuel McElroy and Aleksandar Nađfeji. Led by the league MVP Julius Jenkins, the team was superior to all other competitors in the play-offs and won the championship again after five-year hiatus.

In the 2003–04 season, Berlin achieved its last master qualification to participate in the highest European League, the Euroleague. Between the seasons 2004–05 and 2007–08, the team was able to present itself "only" in ULEB Cup, the second-highest European league. Here, only in the 2006–07 season the team made it beyond the first round and where it was eliminated in the second round.

2008–2016: Current era[edit]

Alba logo used till 2015[2]

With the move into the new 14,500-seat O2 World Berlin, the then reigning champion Alba Berlin opened a new chapter in the club's history. Berlin was the first team in German history to ever average more than 7,000 fans in attendance per game. Thus, Alba's manager Marco Baldi and Supervisory Board Chairman, Axel Schweitzer, decided to take the next step towards a permanent presence in international competition and appropriate presentation options. The Anschutz Group, owner of the O2 World Berlin, and Alba Berlin agreed to a 15-year contract until 2023, with an option for another 10 years.

As the reigning German champion, Alba participated in the 2008–09 Euroleague. There, the team reached the Top 16, where it could not hold its ground against European elite clubs like FC Barcelona, Real Madrid, and Maccabi Tel Aviv. Yet, Alba had Europe's highest attendance at 11,264 spectators in the O2 World Berlin. In addition, the club gathered 14,800 spectators in the main round home game against Union Olimpija, a record crowd at a European Cup game in Germany. While at the national level in the cup final, Alba defeated Baskets Bonn. Later, Alba was beaten by the same team in the play-off semi-final series in five games.

In 2009 and 2015, the manager of Alba Berlin, Marco Baldi, was honored by Euroleague Basketball Company executives with the Euroleague Executive of the Year Award.[3]

On October 8, 2014 Alba Berlin defeated the defending NBA Champion San Antonio Spurs 94-93 on a buzzer beater by Jamel McLean.[4]

In the 2014–15 season, Alba returned to the Euroleague and reached the Top 16. In the Bundesliga, the team had another disappointing season: the team finished in second place but was eliminated in the semifinalist. In the 2015–16 season, Alba had one of its worst seasons in history as the team managed to finish only in 7th place in the regular season. In the playoffs, the team was eliminated in the quarterfinals.


Retired numbers[edit]

Alba Berlin retired numbers
Nat. Player Position Tenure
4 Germany Henrik Rödl SF 1993–2004
12 United States Wendell Alexis PF 1996–2002

Current roster[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team eligibility at FIBA sanctioned events. Players may hold other non-FIBA nationality not displayed.

Alba Berlin roster
Players Coaches
Pos. # Nat. Name Ht. Age
SF 5 Germany Giffey, Niels 2.00 m (6 ft 7 in) 26 – (1991-06-08)8 June 1991
PF 6 Germany Malu, Jonathan 1.97 m (6 ft 6 in) 24 – (1993-03-19)19 March 1993
PG 7 United States Siva, Peyton 1.82 m (6 ft 0 in) 26 – (1990-10-24)24 October 1990
F/C 9 Bosnia and Herzegovina Kikanović, Elmedin 2.10 m (6 ft 11 in) 28 – (1988-09-02)2 September 1988
PF 10 Germany Schneider, Tim 2.08 m (6 ft 10 in) 19 – (1997-09-01)1 September 1997
SG 11 Germany Vargas, Akeem 1.92 m (6 ft 4 in) 27 – (1990-04-29)29 April 1990
G 14 Turkey Atsür, Engin 1.89 m (6 ft 2 in) 33 – (1984-04-02)2 April 1984
C 15 Germany Radosavljević, Bogdan 2.13 m (7 ft 0 in) 24 – (1993-07-11)11 July 1993
SF 23 Canada English, Carl 1.96 m (6 ft 5 in) 36 – (1981-02-02)2 February 1981
Head coach
Assistant coach(es)
  • Turkey Fatih Emre Gezer
  • Germany Thomas Päch

  • (C) Team captain
  • (DP) Development player
  • Injured Injured

Updated: March 18, 2017

Season by season[edit]

The Merces-Benz Arena is the host venue for Alba Berlin
Alba Berlin vs the Dallas Mavericks in 2012
Season Tier League Pos. German Cup European competitions
1991–92 1 Bundesliga 2nd 2 European Cup
1992–93 1 Bundesliga 2nd 3 Korać Cup
1993–94 1 Bundesliga 3rd 3 Korać Cup
1994–95 1 Bundesliga 2nd 3 Korać Cup
1995–96 1 Bundesliga 2nd Semifinalist 3 Korać Cup
1996–97 1 Bundesliga 1st Champion 1 Euroleague
1997–98 1 Bundesliga 1st 1 Euroleague
1998–99 1 Bundesliga 1st Champion 1 Euroleague
1999–00 1 Bundesliga 1st Finalist 1 Euroleague
2000–01 1 Bundesliga 1st 1 SuproLeague
2001–02 1 Bundesliga 1st Champion 1 Euroleague
2002–03 1 Bundesliga 1st Champion 1 Euroleague
2003–04 1 Bundesliga 3rd 1 Euroleague
2004–05 1 Bundesliga 3rd 2 ULEB Cup
2005–06 1 Bundesliga 2nd Champion 2 ULEB Cup
2006–07 1 Bundesliga 5th 2 ULEB Cup
2007–08 1 Bundesliga 1st Fourth place 2 ULEB Cup
2008–09 1 Bundesliga 3rd Champion 1 Euroleague
2009–10 1 Bundesliga 6th Quarterfinalist 2 Eurocup
2010–11 1 Bundesliga 2nd Quarterfinalist 2 Eurocup
2011–12 1 Bundesliga 5th Quarterfinalist 2 Eurocup
2012–13 1 Bundesliga 5th Champion 1 Euroleague
2013–14 1 Bundesliga 2nd Champion 2 Eurocup
2014–15 1 Bundesliga 3rd Third place 1 Euroleague
2015–16 1 Bundesliga 7th Champion 2 Eurocup
2016–17 1 Bundesliga 6th Third place 2 EuroCup


Total Titles: 20

Domestic competitions[edit]

German League

  • Winners (8):1996-97, 1997–98, 1998–99, 1999-00, 2000–01, 2001–02, 2002–03, 2007-08

German Cup

German Supercup

  • Winners (3): 2008, 2013, 2014

European competitions[edit]

FIBA Korać Cup

EuroCup Basketball

Games against NBA teams[edit]

6 October 2012
ALBA Berlin Germany 84–89 United States Dallas Mavericks
8 October 2014
ALBA Berlin Germany 94–93 United States San Antonio Spurs

The road to 1995 FIBA Korać Cup victory[edit]

Hall of Fame[edit]

Notable players[edit]

To appear in this section a player must have either:
  • Set a club record or won an individual award as a professional player.
  • Played at least one official international match for his senior national team or one NBA game at any time.
Alba Berlin's home games at Mercedes-Benz Arena (formerly O2 World) are among the most attended of any European basketball club.



North American:

Head coaches[edit]

Home arenas[edit]

Alba Dancers in 2013


Name sponsor Germany ALBA SE[5]
Shirt sponsor China ZhongDe Metal Group[5]
Sport clothing manufacturer Germany Adidas AG[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Stadiums in Germany, Berlin
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ Club Executive of the Year: Marco Baldi, Alba Berlin
  4. ^ "VIDEO: Spurs lose to Alba Berlin at the buzzer". CBS Sports. Retrieved 9 October 2014. 
  5. ^ a b c Partner-Übersicht Alba Berlin Basketballteam,, Retrieved 30 September 2015. (in German)

External links[edit]