Jibril Hodges is a 30 year old 188cm shooting guard from Los Angeles, California that is the son of ex NBA player Craig Hodges who won NBA titles with the Chicago Bulls and Michael Jordan. Hodges started his basketball career in 2002 with Long Beach St. (NCAA) where he played until 2006. In his first two professional seasons he played in Jordan and in the CBA. IN 2008 he came to Germany and played two years with USC Heidelberg. In the 2010-2011 season he played for Atomeromu SE Paks (Hungary-A Division) playing 32 games: 14.2ppg, 2.7rpg, 3.7apg, 1.5spg, FGP: 60.8%, 3PT: 38.3%, FT-1(96.9%). In the 2011-2012 season he played for Jaszberenyi KSE (Hungary-A Division) playing 24 games: 16.7ppg, 4.3rpg, 4.0apg, 2.0spg, FGP: 50.3%, 3PT: 35.9%, FT: 78.8%. In the 2012-2013 season he played for the ETB Wohnbau Baskets Essen (Germany-ProA): 5 games: 4.0ppg, 1.0rpg, 2.6apg, in Nov.’12 moved to Basket Esch (Luxembourg-Diekirch League): 10 games: 17.7ppg, 4.9rpg, 4.3apg, 2.1spg, FGP: 58.0%, 3PT: 39.7%, FT: 89.7%. Last season he played for Basket Esch (Luxembourg-Total League) playing 12 games: 23.3ppg, 5.6rpg, 5.0apg, 3.2spg, FGP: 68.4%, 3PT: 51.1%, FT: 93.3%. He spoke to German Hoops about basketball
Jibril how is it going? Have you been spending more time in Chicago or California this off season? How has your summer been?
This off season off season I have spent most of the time in Germany. Last summer my fiance and I moved into a home in Germany, so thats where I’ve been spending most of my time. I flew back to Chicago for my family reunion, and to see my father for some workouts and basketball and advice.
You played your first two years in Europe in Germany, then two years in Hungry and the last two years in Luxemburg with short intervals in Germany with Duesseldorf and Essen. Which country has been the full package for you? Where did you like it most on and off the court?
Honestly, I am appreciative of every opportunity to play basketball. Its cool because I am actually being paid to do something that I love and that I would do for free. I’ve enjoyed every country but I guess since Germany is home now, and after a successful World Cup, ICH LIEBE DEUTSCHLAND!
Last season you played for Basket Esch (Luxembourg) winning the national title playing 12 games: 23.3ppg, 5.6rpg, 5.0apg, 3.2spg, FGP: 68.4%, 3PT: 51.1%, FT: 93.3%. What kind of experience was it playing in a new country? I am sure that the bus rides were very short? Lol
Its been a really pleasant experience in Luxembourg. I have truly enjoyed Esch and we had many successes last season as a team so it was fun. The road trips in Luxembourg are really short, I believe the longest trip was 45 minutes.
Will you be returning back to Luxemburg or are you testing the market? Would you like to possibly experience another new country this season?
I resigned with Esch in Luxembourg for the coming season and Im looking forward to competing for a championship and a cup championship as well.
Now lets go back to your first season in Heidelberg in 2008-2009 You played for USC Heidelberg where you led the team in scoring averaging 18.8ppg, 2.6rpg, 2.9apg, 1.7spg, FGP: 60.9%, 3PT: 32.3%, FT: 85.7%. You played together with American Japhet Mcneil where you guys made everything look so easy. The team had talented players and also a 17 year old kid named Danilo Barthel that now just finished 2 weeks of NBA Summer League in Orlando and Las Vegas When you look back at your season with Danilo Barthel in Heidelberg and see where he is now, would you ever have predicted that he would make it to the NBA Summer League? What do you think has been his biggest attribute that has brought him this far. Has his hard work outweighed his talent?
Its funny that you mention that because during that time in Heidelberg I gave Danilo a nickname that he hated. I call him Future. I knew he had a chance to be special, because he was athletic, long, and he had a very strong work ethic. But what separated Danilo is his understanding of the game, basketball IQ, and his versatility. I saw Danilo during the season and I told him that I thought he had the chance to get to the top league in the world. His talent and work ethic have met and the Skyliners have done a great job of giving him the opportunity to earn game experience.
Back as a rookie in Heidelberg, you were a leader at age 24 while he was 17. What 1-1 memories do you remember having with him on and off the court? His passing is a big strength as he doesn´t shy away from the extra pass. Could one already see his passing qualities at the age of 17? He had a very impressive NBA Summer League totally being able to compete with the young and talented future NBA players. Where do you see his career still going? Could he make to the top level in Europe or even possibly the NBA some day?
I dont recall Danilo and I ever playing 1 on 1 but he was really mature as a person off the court. Absolutely his game has matured a lot, but you could see his versatility and his ability to make plays for teammates was evident at 17. I knew he was good he just needed to stay healthy. The sky is the limit for Danilo, to me he is the Future, dont tell him I said that.
How does a normal summer work out day look like for JIbril Hodges in 2014 on and off the court?
It consists of a lot of shooting and ball handling. Now is the time where I focus on conditioning and running more than weight training. Off the court I spend a lot of time with my family, I have a small family here in Germany so we’ve been hanging out and my fiance and I have been trying to put our wedding plans together.
Where will the journey of the Cavs end this season with Lebron, Irving, Bennett, Wiggans and co?
I am not sure where the Cavs will end up, but they will compete for the title. If they can stay healthy they have a huge opportunity.
What was the last DVD movie that you saw?
I havent watched dvds lately, but the last movie I saw was The Purge Anarchy. Miles thank you for your time, and I appreciate you writing me.
Thanks Jibril for the chat!