Virgil Matthews is a 27 year old 188cm guard from Federal Way, Washington that is playing in Germany in the PRO B for Erdgas Ehingen. He played at Montana (NCAA) and in his senior year played 31 games: 10.1ppg, 4.6rpg, 4.0apg, 1.7spg, FG: 49.8%, 3PT: 48.4%, FT: 76.1%. In 2006-2007, he turned professional and came to Germany and played for KICKZ Muenchen Basket (Germany-2.Bundesliga): 29 games: 18.0ppg, 6.1rpg, 5.2apg, 2.6spg, 2FGP: 57.3%, 3FGP: 31.8%, FT: 66.5%. In 2007-2008, he played for Tacoma Jazz (IBL). In 2008-2009, he returned back to Germany and played for Schwelmer Baskets (Germany-Regionalliga). Last season, he played for Olympia Reign (IBL, starting five): 21 games: 23.1ppg, 7.2rpg and for Seattle Aviators (NABL). Awards and Achievements in his career have been , Big Sky Conf. Regular Season Runner-Up -05, 06, Big Sky Conf. Tournament Winner -05, 06, Big Sky Tournament MVP -06, Big Sky All-Tournament Team -06, All-Big Sky Honorable Mention -06, and USBasket.com All-IBL Honorable Mention -10. Currently for Erdgas Ehingen he is averaging 11,2ppg, 5,5rpg and 3,6apg. He spoke to eurobasket before the deciding game against NBC April 12th to see who goes to the PRO A.
Tonight a do or die game against NBC. How confident and ready is the team to take care of business on your home court?
We are pretty confident and ready, we feel this is what we played the whole season for to get this game on our home floor, and we haven’t lost there so we feel good about taking care of business.
Can one talk about luck that this deciding game took place, because both teams had to redo a game otherwise NBC would already have moved up?
I mean we were extremely fortunate to get a replay, but I think the whole situation would be different if we hadn’t replayed that game, but either way we’re are excited to get this chance.
What was key in the 84-80 win against NBC?
We finally made shots 50% from the 3 and we are a pretty good shooting team we just can’t get everyone to make shots at the same time, and that game we did a pretty good job of it
What will Ehingen have to do better in this deciding game to get the win?
Well first we will have to score more than 45 points, but I think we just have to make shots, and really concentrate on eliminating their open shots. They have been making open shots and we have to do a better job of not giving them so many
Have you ever played in such a big game in your career like this one against NBC?
In college I played in two Conference championship games and 3 NCAA tournament games and a high school state championship but this is definitely my biggest as a professional and is right up there with those others.
Ehingen has many young German talented players. Will the team be ready mentally for this deciding game?
Yes, of course we have young players, but the system here in Urspring is really good. The kids have won numerous NBBL championships which is like winning high school championships so they’ve had their fair share of big games and they will be ready.
What will be the key matchup in the game?
Our key matchup is probably stopping Cornelius Adler from having a big impact on the game, every game even ones where he didn’t score a lot he made timely baskets so limiting those I think is the key.
What is the most difficult thing in having to stop Ahmad Smith?
He’s a very versatile player. He’s a very good passer and rebounder. He affects the game in other ways than just scoring and then at the same time when he needs to he can score too. He’s one of the best all around players in this league.
How much potential does Kevin Bright have and where do you see his future?
Man the sky is the limit for Kevin. He has big time schools wanting him already and I think his potential is unlimited he can shoot the lights out and he’s pretty athletic. I think he’ll be a very good player for whatever college he chooses.
Were you surprised how low scoring the 2011 NCAA final was?
Not totally surprised, championship games are usually great or bad. I think its pretty tough to spend a week preparing for a game as big as the final four game then have to play an equally big game in two days later, so the outcomes are usually toss ups.
How high will Kemba Walker go in the 2011 NBA draft?
I think he’s predicted somewhere middle first round, but I expect him to do well when he gets his chance he’s riding a pretty high confidence train right now and I think that will help him and he is a winner which is always a good attribute. I think his stock can’t get any higher.
What was the last DVD movie that you saw?
I just watched Avatar with German subtitles you know got to work on that German.
Thanks Virgil for the chat.