Josh Parker is a 23 year old 183cm point guard from Harvey, Illinois that recently was a rookie for the Bayer Giants Leverkusen and helped the team win the Pro B title. With Leverkusen he 33 games: Score-1(28.5ppg), 4.5rpg, Assists-2(7.1apg), 2.2spg, FGP: 43.3%, 3PT: 33.9%, FT: 80.3%He played at Drake from 2007-2009 and then played for Dayton(NCAA) from 2010-1012. He played a total of 130 NCAA games. Currently he is tearing up the German PRO B. He scored in double figures 33 times scoring over 20 points 26 times, 30 points or more 15 times and 40 points or more four times including a 48 point explosion against Dresden. He cleaned out the Eurobasket awards as well getting Eurobasket.com All-German 2.Bundesliga Pro B Player of the Year -13, Eurobasket.com All-German 2.Bundesliga Pro B Guard of the Year -13, Eurobasket.com All-German 2.Bundesliga Pro B Import Player of the Year -13, Eurobasket.com All-German 2.Bundesliga Pro B 1st Team -13, and Eurobasket.com German 2.Bundesliga Pro B All-Imports Team -13. Many teams were aware of his stellar play in the pro B including the Mitteldeutscher BC who signed him for the 2013-2014 Beko BBL season. He spoke to German Hoops about basketball.
Josh thanks for talking to Eurobasket.com Where are you currently and how have you been enjoying your summer vacation so far?
No problem thanks for the interview. I am currently home in Chicago. My summer vacation had been great just been enjoying my time with my family.
After a very successful season in Germany what was the first thing you did when you got back to Chicago? For some reason many basketball players go home craving a yummy Burrito.
The first thing I did when I arrived back in Chicago was get a pizza from Beggars Pizza it is my favorite pizza place here so I had to get it!
You were the best player in the Pro B, perhaps the best player the league has ever seen. Did it feel at times like you were a man playing with kids at a play ground in terms of the skill level?
No, not at all the competition level was very good and the Pro B really had some very skilled guys with a lot of talent. So I just was blessed to play the way that I did.
The Bayer Giants Leverkusen started the season slow at 3-4, but then got going. What was the deciding factor that got the team going?
Starting off the way we did was tough and no one would have thought that we would be Pro B champs not even me after the start we had, but we as a team stuck together, fought and worked hard every day and believed which led us to have the run that we had.
You led an underdog type of team to the Pro B title. Where did you get your leadership qualities from?
I would have to say my father. Just watching him on a day to day basis and him teaching me the ways of life as a man have really helped me translate those same qualities to the basketball court.
On many nights it was you and American Jack Eggleston that paved the way for the Leverkusen game. How important was he to the success of Leverkusen. He was in the shadow of your overwhelming success and play.
Jack was a huge part of our success if it was not for him I don’t know where we would be. He played hard on both ends the whole season and always came with a will to win that rubbed off on us. He gets overlooked a lot but he was like the glue to our team that kept everything together, whatever we needed a rebound or a clutch bucket he was there. Glad I had the chance to play with him.
Besides winning the Pro B title, what was your fondest memory of this season in terms of your individual play? You scored 40 points plus four times including a 48 point explosion against Dresden.
I would have to say the Licher Baeren game right before Christmas break it was a huge game for us that really helped us to start coming together as a team!
What will you always remember from your last meeting with head coach Achim Kuczmann? You came to Leverkusen with a lot of talent, but I am sure the German head coach had some part in your dominating play.
It was tough saying goodbye to coach Achim. He definitely was a huge part of the success I had in my first year and words can’t even express how much I appreciate him. He trusted in my ability and let me play the game the way I knew how. Not only on the basketball court but off the court as well he was always there for me. He is just a classy guy and a great coach! Glad I had the chance to play for him.
I never had any doubt that after such a big season that you would land at a higher level. The off season is still young, did you jump at that first good offer from MBC or what were the main reasons for taking the MBC offer?
MBC is a great club that followed me the whole season and really showed a lot of interest in me. I liked the style of play and also the opportunity to come in and make an impact right away. Just felt like they are a really great fit for me.
What do you know about the small town Weissenfels? It is very small, but the club did win a international tournament, only three German teams have ever won an international title and legend Wendell Alexis ended his career there?
I know a little bit about the town did some research on it. They have a good tradition there and I know they love their basketball there in Weissenfels so I’m excited to be a part of the family.
Head coach Silvano Poropat has you planned in as a combo guard. You obviously won`t be as dominant as in the Pro B, but will it be a bit difficult having a new role and not always scoring 40 points?
I’m just looking forward to the opportunity and being able to play and compete at this next level. I’m willing to do whatever it takes for our team and anything Coach Poropat needs of me. Just going to focus on getting better everyday.
One Beko BBL club mentioned that athletic ability was lacking a bit and was one of the reasons why they didn´t look at you further. Does criticism like that make you work even harder this summer? On what things will you work on most?
Of course it pushes you more just being a competitor but right now I’m just focused on getting better each and everyday and looking forward to getting to work with MBC. Being a complete player has been a focus this summer.
How does a typical Josh Parker work out day this summer look like?
A typical Josh Parker workout day consist of skill training in the morning and then weight training and playing in the evenings.
What is something that you will treat yourself to this summer? Something that you have been wanting to do but have never done before?
I have been wanting to treat myself to a little vacation somewhere. I want to go to a NBA Finals game I never been before.
Do you think that Derrick Rose will ever be the old Derrick Rose when he steps back into the NBA jungle?
Yes I believe he will be the old Derrick Rose! I know his competitive drive and believe in his ability he will be ready!
How did the Germany experience make you a better and stronger person on and off the court?
My German experience has really made me a better and stronger person on and off the court learning a new culture, experiencing a new way of life, and to overcome adversity.
What was the last DVD movie that you saw?
Thanks Josh for the chat.