Max DiLeo is a 22 year old 185cm guard from Philadelphia that will be starting his professional basketball career in Germany with Gotha and has a brother TJ who will play his third professional season in Germany with Giessen. Max Dileo started his basketball career at Cinnaminson HS, New Jersey and college career in 2011 with Monmouth (NCAA) where he played a total of 114 NCAA games. As a senior he played 32 games averaging 5.9ppg, 3.1rpg, 1.5apg, 1.4spg, FGP: 48.2%, 3PT: 25.4%, FT: 70.0%. He spoke to German Hoops after getting his first professional contract in Germany with Gotha.
Max thanks for talking to German Hoops. Where are you at the moment and how have you been enjoying your early summer so far?
I am currently at home in New Jersey, and summer has been great so far, it was nice to have a short break from basketball but I continued to play and work out with my brother to stay in shape.
How relieved are to have signed your first pro contract very very early in the summer transfer period? Do this take some pressure off your back in your rookie season?
Signing my first pro contract was great, it was like a dream come true! Signing it also relieved me of a lot of stress during the summer. It definitely takes a lot of pressure off of starting my rookie season, early on in the summer I knew what I was going to do and what I needed to work on to have a successful season.
How much advice did you get from your brother TJ who recently finished his second pro season in Germany about making your first move across the pond to German pro A team Gotha?
Tj has helped me tremendously throughout the whole process, he helped me a lot in college and I believe he will continue to help me throughout my professional career. As he has already been in Germany for 2 years he knows what to expect and helps me if I have any questions, he also is helping me in the summer when we practice together.
Gotha head coach Chris Ensminger is very impressed by your game. He can´t stop talking about your basketball IQ. Is that something that runs in the family?
I do believe growing up in a family that is so close to the game of basketball definitely helps with my basketball IQ. I have been receiving advice from my parents as well as my brother growing up which definitely helps.
What was your first impression of head coach Chris Ensminger? He is a basketball legend in Germany and like Dennis Wucherer who just finished his second season in Giessen making big strides, Ensminger has done the same with Gotha.
I had a great first impression from Chris Ensminger, we spoke early in the process and I liked him very much. To add to that one of my former coaches, Derrick Phelps, played against him and had very good things to say about him.
You get compared a lot to your brother TJ. What are the main differences in your game and is there something you do better than he does?
My brother and I have a very similar style of play. He has more experience playing in Europe and knows the style of play, I am still relatively new to this style but I think it will be a good fit for me. Like my brother I take pride in my defense and I feel that is one of the most important aspects of basketball.
You are described as a 185cm guard. Please describe your game a bit?
I played a lot of shooting guard in college and I believe I have a good shot from three. I also played some point guard and I am good coming off of ball screens and making plays. The most important thing that I contribute would be my defense, I think that is the best part of my game.
What is a hidden strength in your game that doesn´t get noticed right away on the court?
I think that my hustle and effort is a great strength that I have. I am willing to do all of the little things that help teams win games.
You played four seasons at Monmouth(NCAA) and as a senior played 32 games: 5.9ppg, 3.1rpg, 1.5apg, 1.4spg, FGP: 48.2%, 3PT: 25.4%, FT: 70.0%. What was your season highlights at Monmouth?
Some of the season highlights I had was when my team beat Iona at home who at the time was the number one team in the conference, as well as when we beat Penn when I scored 18 points in the first half. Some other personal highlights would include when I scored 21 points against Iona in the MAAC conference tournament, as well as being featured on the ESPN top 10 for an alley oop I had during the season. Also my junior year I finished the season number 12 in the nation for 3 point shooting percentage.
You played four seasons for head coach King Rice at Monmouth. How did he prepare you best for a professional basketball career?
He has taught me so much, but most importantly he instilled a defensive attitude that I take pride in. He also stressed how important hustle and effort are in the game of basketball, which I consider one of the best parts of my game.
Who was the best player that you battled against in the NCAA that is in the NBA now?
I played many great players, the best would probably be Michael Carter-Williams and Harrison Barnes
In 2009 you took part in a U-16 German national team training camp. Back then Frank Menz was the coach. What memories do you have of this experience?
It was a great experience and I learned a little bit about the style of play in Germany. I believe this experience will help me in my professional career in Germany.
How will a 2015 summer work out plan look like for you on and off the court?
My brother and I practice almost every day with my father. My brother helps me with the things that will help me the most in my career in Germany. We also play in a summer league together to stay in shape and help improve my basketball skills.
After another year of college ball, you will have ample time this summer to test TJ in the gym. How many times out of 10 do you think can you take him in one on one now?
Some of the times one on one gets very competitive between my brother and I. Last time we played I beat him 2 out of 3 times, however out of 10 I think it will be very close. I’m going to say I could win 6 out of 10, but I’m sure he would say he would win more out of 10 than me haha, that is just the way we compete.
Who will win the 2015 NBA title the Cavs or the Warriors?
This is cheating because I got back to you so late, but warriors! Curry is an amazing player.
What was the last DVD movie that you saw?
The last DVD movie that I watched was The Equalizer.
Thanks Max for the chat.