Jefferson Mason(Basketball Is Much More Than Performing On The Court But It Is Also About Being A Good Person In The Community And Developing Bonds With Fans

Jefferson Mason is a 24 year old 198cm guard from Crystal Minnesota. He played his first three seasons of college ball at  N.Colorado (NCAA) playing a total of 58 NCAA games. He then played at Minnesota State-Mankato (NCAA2) from 2009-2011 and in his senior year he played 33 games: 19.2ppg, 8.8rpg, 2.2apg, 1.2spg, FG%: 55.5, 3FG%: 30.6, FT%: 70.0. He started his professional basketball career in Germany for  the Webmoebel Baskets Paderborn (Germany-ProA, starting five): 31 games: 17.1ppg, 6.7rpg, 2.3apg, FGP: 56.5%, 3PT: 31.8%, FT: 65.8%. He scored in double figures 28 times and scored 20 points or more 10 times. He spoke to German Hoops about basketball.

Jefferson thanks for taking some time to talk to eurobasket. Where are you now and how has your summer been?
I am currently in Minneapolis Minnesota working out and training and keeping myself in shape.

It is September and your still not signed. Despite a tough market, how surprised are you that you are still waiting for the phone to ring?
I’m a little surprised that I haven’t signed with any team yet but it is a tough market and thats expected. I know that something good will happen soon for me.

You had such a strong season with the Webmoebel Baskets averaging 17.1ppg, 6.7rpg, 2.3apg, FGP: 56.5%, 3PT: 31.8%, FT: 65.8%. Have you not had any offers at all or just not the right situation?
I have had several offers in different countries and some interest in Germany but nothing that has really made me comfortable on a decision. It isn’t all about the money for me, its also about the right fit and the right organization for me.

The Webmoebel Baskets had money problems changed ownership and now are called the Finke Baskets. Was there no chance of you returning back to Paderborn?
I was not aware of their money problems until late in the season last year. They paid me all the money I was due so there was no problem at all with that. Coach Thomas Glasauer was an amazing coach and friend to me too and I loved playing for him. We never spoke of an option for next year because I think my agent and I were hoping for an opportunity in the BBL.

What were the most important things that you were able to learn on and off the court with the Webmoebel Baskets Paderborn?
I learned to stay patient and to stay humble with the game of basketball. Every game and practice is a different opportunity to increase your skills and to develop relationships with your teammates. I learned to take each day in stride. I also learned that basketball was much more then performing on court but it was also about being a good person in the community and developing bonds with fans in people of the city. When you fly across the ocean to another country to live, it helps you grow up really fast and realize what your priorities really are.

You had some big games in the PRO A scoring 20 or more points 10 times. Which player was your toughest opponent last season?
I think that playing against Cheminitz was our toughest team to play because of their amazing defense. I was usually guarded by Jorge Schmidt and he was an extremely physical and disciplined defender. Playing against him was a tough challenge but extremely fun at the same time. Those are the games that you look forward to, when trying to define yourself as a player!

Your ex teammate Justin Stommes was signed by Beko BBL team Eisbaeren Bremerhaven. That could have been you. Not to take anything away from his amazing talent, how does that make you feel when you see teammates getting jobs and your not?
Well first off Justin Stommes is an amazing basketball player and good friend of mine. He definitely deserved the opportunity to play in the BBL after last season. I believe that every team has different needs and there are also very limited spots opening every year in the BBL for players. This may be why I didn’t get a call. I believe its all about timing and hopefully a team will take the gamble on me, because in the end it will pay off for them.

Will Justin Stommes be able to make an impact in the Beko BBL?
He definitely will be able to in my opinion. He is a 6’8 1-3 guard that can shoot the lights out and that can handle the ball better than most pg’s. When you can shoot at a high clip from the 3 like he can, then success surely will follow.

What is your biggest strength and how could you help a team right now?
I would say my biggest strengths are my competitiveness, athletic ability, efficiency, and will to win. At every level that I have played on, I have had success. I’m a good teammate that believes that team chemistry is the identity of a championship team. I bring numerous highlights and very consistent play every day. I can defend 1-4 positions and play in any style of basketball. Winning is my number one priority and that is hard to find in some guys.

Describe your game and why should a European team be interested in your services?
I am a player that can play in a fast up and down system like in Paderborn, but that can also play in a half court system like I did in college my senior year. I rebound like a mad man, and I can score from anywhere on the court. Driving and creating shots for my teammates is something that I do well and I also score with the best of them. One thing I pride myself in is my efficiency. Scoring a lot of points without shooting every time and putting my foot print on every aspect of the game.

What is your biggest dream as a professional basketball player?
I would love to get the chance to play in the NBA but truly I would love to play this game until my body will no longer allow me to and to be as successful as possible in terms of winning games and championships. I believe that individual accolades will only go so far but team accomplishment will last in memory for a lifetime.

How does a typical workout day look like for Jefferson Mason?
Monday-Friday I get up when my wife goes to work at 7:30am and I go to the gym to get my first workout in. This includes cardio of about 3-5 miles on the treadmill, then weight training for an hour or more after that to increase strength and quickness. I will return to the gym around 2pm to do individual drills with my high school coach to work on shooting, ball handling, free throws and defensive skills. After that on Mon, Wed, and Fridays, I play 5 on 5 with local college and pro basketball players. I live, eat, sleep basketball because I want to be ready when my next opportunity comes!

Who would win in their prime the Dream Team or Team USA 2012?
Definitely the Dream Team! I say this because they had a guy on the team by the name of MICHAEL JORDAN!

What was the last DVD movie that you saw?
I actually watched the Green Mile the other day. Michael Clarke Duncan just passed away so I had to pay my respects. My teammates from last year will also laugh about this though, because I watched it for the first time last year and was absolutely obsessed with it. They all gave me a hard time about it!

Thanks Jefferson for the chat

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