Pascal Roller(Deutsche Bank Skyliners): The Most Important Thing In The Alba Berlin Series Hasn´t Been The Home Court, But Who Got IntoThe Game Better

Pascal Roller is a 34 year old 180cm combo guard that is playing his 11th season in Frankfurt. He started his career with TV Langen and then played with Freiburg in the second German Bundesliga from 1996-1999. He has played in Frankfurt ever since except for the 2006-2007 season when he took a sabbatical in Italy with Angelico Biella playing 39 games averaging 5.7ppg, 1.6rpg, 1.4apg, 2FGP: 45.6%, 3PT: 41.9%, FT: 85.0%. His best statistical season was the 2004-2005 season where he played 44 games averaging14.9ppg, 3.2rpg, Ast-5(4.0apg), 1.0spg, 2.7bpg, 2FGP: 49.5%, 3FGP-3(43.3%). He has played 19 Euroleague games, 28 ULEB Cup games, and 12 Eurochallenge games. His biggest success with Frankfurt was winning the BBL Cup in 2000 and the BBL championship in 2004. He is a seven time BBL Allstar. He also played with the German National team for 9 years. His biggest accomplishments was playing at the 2008 Olympics at Beijing, winning a bronze medal at the World Championships at Indianapolis in 2002 and winning a silver medal at The European Championships in Belgrad in 2005. In 2009-2010, he played 46 games averaging 8.5ppg, 2.0rpg, 2.7apg, FGP: 44.3%, 3PT: 40.0%, FT-1(90.8%). currently he is averaging 4,5ppg and 1,3apg. He spoke to  German Hoops before game 5 against Alba Berlin

Congrats on the 83-74 win against Alba Berlin in game four. Are these do or die games easy now for you then earlier in your career?

Yes it gets easier, because I have more experience in these games in the last years. Now I know how to react in certain phases of the game and am able to make better decision in certain phases of a game.

Kimmo Muurinen said that the mental preparation leading up to game four really helped him and the team. What exactly did the team do in this mental preparation?

We got more together and got more on the same wave length and page. We all understand very well that we have the same goal. We win and lose together.

Were The Deutsche Bank Skyliners a bit surprised of their big 16-0 run start?#

We finally were able to do which we didn´t do in the first three games which was start well. We finally showed the way that we are capable of playing. I think it was easier to see that we wanted more to win than just playing well with our abilities.

In the third quarter, Alba Berlin went on a 15-0 run to cut the lead down to 48-47. How was Alba Berlin able to do this?

I think that Alba Berlin isn´t  a team that really fits to our style. We are two teams in style. Alba Berlin is very strong individually and are taller and bigger. We are quick and play very variable. Alba Berlin is always capable of making a run like that.

What was the biggest strength of The Deutsche Bank Skyliners in game four?

I think that we had a healthy mixture of good games from many players. Wood and Powell were strong, Tez played good defense and I played well. the team stood behind me.

Thursday could be your last game against Sven Schultze. What are your nicest memories from him with the German National team?

I was the room mate of Sven Schultze for two years. I remember when he became a dad, it was so funny, because he spoke with other parents to understand what he has to do as a father. I realized that I wasn´t much different as I became a father.

Alba Berlin and The Deutsche Bank Skyliners have all won their away games. This series reminds one a bit on the 2004 beko BBL finals against Bamberg.

It is a little different in that in 2004, there seemed to be more pressure on the home team winning. The most important thing in this series has been who got into the game better and not the home court advantage. The home court advantage has never been bigger than this game five though.

How much tactical things can a team do for a game five? The teams know each other and it seems like the team with the highest intensity and who wants to win more will prevail?

Yes that is right. There is always little things you can tweak on offense and defense and having a surprise in your pocket is always good. When the fourth quarter comes, that is when the real fight starts.

You are playing your 12th season in the first  league in Germany and one season in Italy. What has changed the most since the 1999-2000 season?

The beko BBL has developed further with teams and players profiting. The beko BBL has done a good job working on the infrastructure. The beko BBL does need to have new goals so it can reach the level of other leagues. The beko BBL has shown that it strives on having Americans in the league and being athletic. It would be good, if more of a European touch can get integrated. The beko BBL is very valuable for good players and the players always get paid on time.

Your body probably doesn´t mind the lesser minutes, but is it difficult not playing as much anymore?

It is ok now, but I would of had  a problem with it as I was younger. For me as a young player as I was looking for teams was not the team, but knowing form the coach that I would have a chance on getting playing minutes. Stefan Koch gave me that chance and I am grateful for that.

Has anything changed in the coaching style of Gordon Herbert since the title season in 2004?

Nothing has really changed. His style is the same, but it always depends on what players he has and he always knows where the strength of that player is. His philosophy and structure is still the same and has gotten better. He has developed as a coach and is always looking to get better as a coach.

Is there anything that you would have liked to have reached in your basketball career that you haven´t?

I still want to win another title this season with the Deutsche Bank Skyliners. I really want to reach the final. There isn´t really anything that I still need to achieve.

Who was the best player that you played against in the beko BBL?

Sasa Obradovic. I remember how much in awe I was with him as I was 20-21 years ole just with what he had achieved as a player, more than I would be now. Demond Mallet who played with Bamberg and Terrell Mcintyre that played one season with Braunschweig.

What was your nicest memory on the court in Italy with Biella?

The big derby with Cantu. We played against Michael Jordan and were way behind and scored 46 points in the fourth quarter. We were down by three points and I had two free throws. I made the first and intentionally missed the second and we got the tip in and overtime. We won the game in overtime and remember waiting two hours in the dressing room, because the Cantu fans were blocking the way out.

How do you see the 2011 NBA final Dallas Mavericks-Miami Heat?

I think it will be a good final. I hope the Mavericks win and it would be great if Dirk could finally win that first ring as well as Jason Kidd who is near the end of his career. I think that the Mavericks could win. They won two against the Lakers and maybe they can go to Miami and steal a game right away. I think Dallas is mentally stronger and I think that is where the series will be decided. This is the best Nowitzki that we have ever seen at the moment. He is so hard to stop now and is amazing how quickly that he can change a game. I remember I got up to give the baby a bottle at 4.45 am and saw that Dallas was down 16 points with five minutes to play and I didn´t think that they could pull it out so I went to bed. The next day I learned that Dallas had rallied and come back and won the game.

What was the last DVD movie that you saw?

Pippi Langstrumpf with my daughter.

Thanks Pascal for the chat

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