Frank Robinson(Maccabi Haifa Israel) Pregame Thoughts To Eurochallenge Game Against Deutsche Bank Skyliners

Frank Robinson is 26 year old 193cm guard that was born in Compton, California and grew up in Los Angeles. He played at Cal Fullerton (NCAA) from 2005-2008. In his senior year, he played games: 15.8ppg, 6.9rpg, 2.5apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 45.1%, 3Pts: 34.2%, FT: 73.8%. In 2008-2009, he started with NBA club Atlanta Hawks (NBA), left in Oct.’08, then moved to Union Olimpija Ljubljana (Slovenia-Liga UPC, starting five): Adriatic League: 17 games: 4.5ppg, 1.5rpg, 1.1spg; Euroleague: 8 games: 6.8ppg, 3.3rpg, in Feb.’09 signed at EnBW Ludwigsburg (Germany-1.Bundesliga, starting five): 11 games: 11.0ppg, 4.9rpg, 1.4apg, 1.3spg, FGP: 53.2%, 3PT: 27.0%, FT: 73.5%. Last season, he started with the Atlanta Hawks (NBA) again, only pre-season, in Dec.’09 moved to Los Angeles D-Fenders (D-League, starting five): 38 games: 12.4ppg, 4.1rpg, 3.7apg, 1.9spg, FGP: 49.8%, 3PT: 24.3%, FT: 69.2%. Last summer, he played NBA Summer League in Las Vegas (LA Lakers). This season, he is playing for Maccabi Haifa (Israel-Premier League) and spoke to German Hoops before the EuroChallenge game against The Deutsche Bank Skyliners.

You are playing your first season with Macabbi Haifa in Israel. The team has a 2-2 record. How do you like playing in the Israel league? How woudl you compare to other league like Germany, D-league, and Slovenia?

First of all I want say hello to all the basketball fans who read these aritcles here  and I want to tell them to look out for a project that I am working on called SWSX. (Ill explain later) Thank you for this oppurtunity.

Playing here in Israel has been a pleasant surprise. I was always told that it is a good country and one of the easiest for Americans to get comfortable with but the competition level is higher than a lot of people give credit. I really enjoy the league and experience that I have had here so far. Compared to other leagues I would only rank my time in Ljubljana above Israel and that is only because we played in Euro League and Adriatic league. The coaches and General Managers of this league really did a good job recruiting this year and it is showing in the standings so far.

You were in training camp of the Atlanta Hawks in 2008 and 2009 and played NBA Summer league with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2010. How close do you feel about reaching the NBA?

Honestly I feel that if I would not have sprained my ankle 3days before summer league with the Lakers, that I would not be here in Israel right now, I was in a lot of pain during this years summer league but I knew I had to play well to get a good teams interest. All though I fell short of my goal this year I still landed in a good organization filled with a lot of talent. I still feel like I have a window to stick with a team I just need to continue to get better and Coach Elad has been very helpful with that, he knows my goals and is pushing me as hard as I can to reach them..

Macabbi Haifa has many Americans including yourself, Larry O Bannon and Marco Killingsworth and other talented guys like a AVI BEN-CHIMOL. Is this team talented enough to make a run in the Israel Premeir league?

Our team is very young but we have key pieces who have experience in winning. Marco played in the final four last year leading Netanya. Larry has played for one of the best coaches in college history at Louisville. I have played for and been around winning clubs since I have been a pro (atlanta hawks and Ljubljana) so we have a unique mix of youth and experience. The key is putting it all together and making it work, I think our coaching staff will do a great job in getting that done. When that happens we will be hard to beat.

You also have started strong in the first four games averaging 11ppg, 3,3rpg, 1,3apg and 1,0spg. Does this league fit your most desired playing style?

We have a great system here in Haifa, when you have team with shooters, drivers, and good bigs its hard to stop one person. So we have been put in a position to take advantages of weaknesses. On any giving night you dont know who will be the top scorer for our team. Marko last game, I was the game before that, pretty soon Sylven and Larry will have breakout games and so on. The one player that everyone forgets about is Derrick Lowe who is capable of having 20-30 point games himself. So the style not only fits me it fits pretty much everyone on our team.

You played against The Deutsche Bank Skyliners in 2009 losing in Frankfurt with EnBW Ludwigsburg. What do you remember from this game?

WOW lol that was my first game in Germany, I remember being incredibly fatigued in my limited minutes but also remember that they were a really well coached team and had a good big man who I think plays for Alba Berlin(Derrick Allen) now. The arena was nice,  and I am looking forward to going back there and playing.

What kind of game can we await against Frankfurt in the first Eurochallenge game and what will be key in winning?

It will be a tough game they have a very good nucleus of players starting with guard Dashawn Woods. I am sure it will be a defensive game and the team who wins the rebounding column and less turnovers will win.

What is your impression of American Slyven Landesberg who joined the team after playing two years in the NCAA with Virginia. What makes him for 20 already such a strong player?

This is a great question. Sylven is a very very unique player. How many Americans can you count that are 6’6, athletic, can shoot the ball, can handle the ball and also is taking great pride in learning how to become a great defender? He does not belong here in Europe and eventually he will not be here only to visit his friends in Israel. Seriously Sylven has the tools to be an NBA starter and once he puts it all together and learns how to play the game at a professional level he will do just that. Everyday we have battles in practice and I know we make each other better even though I always win lol… Im the veteran so I cant allow anything else.. I have to get my wins while I still can

Who wins a one on one, you or Larry O Bannon?

Me and Larry have played one on one several times and I am not going to lie to you he is really tough to guard. But everyone knows I am the king of one on one. I rarely lose. Larry is one of the best scorers in our league and he will have a breakout game soon in practice he is working very hard to get his rhythm and I know once we really need him to take over a game you all will see what I see everyday in practice..

What was the last DVD movie that you saw?

Game film from our last game vs. Ashkelon which we lost at the buzzer

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