Trent Lockett is a 24 year old 196cm guard from Minnetonka, Minnesota playing his third professional season and first for Dolomiti Energia Trento (Italy-Serie A). He played for Arizona St. (NCAA) from 2009-2012 playing a total of 87 NCAA games. He then moved to Marquette (NCAA) and as a senior played 35 games: 7.0ppg, 5.1rpg, 1.8apg, FGP: 43.6%, 3PT: 33.3%, FT: 75.2%. In the 2013-2014 season he turned professional for Reno Bighorns (D-League, starting five): 48 games: 11.0ppg, 5.5rpg, 1.9apg, 1.0spg, FGP: 51.5%, 3PT: 42.0%, FT: 74.5%. Last season he played his first season in Europe for the Basketball Loewen Braunschweig (Germany-BBL): 30 games: 12.5ppg, 5.0rpg, 2.4apg, 1.3spg, FGP: 51.2%, 3PT: 39.4%, FT: 77.9%. He spoke to German Hoops about basketball recently before a Eurocup game in Oldenburg.
Trent thanks for talking to eurobasket. Is the Italian lifestyle all what you expected?
Yes it has been. I really have been enjoying the culture and lifestyle.
Your playing your first season with Dolomiti Energia Trento (Italy-Serie A) and return back to Germany to play Eurocup in Oldenburg. What memories do you have of the 84-70 in Oldenburg?
I didn´t have too many good memories of that game except for my dunk over Adam Chubb. We won the first game in Eurocup and want to win in Oldenburg to separate us from the others in the group.
You have played against many tough players, but was your memory of your one game against Ricky Paulding last season?
He is a very solid player that can do it all shoot, drive and pass and is just very well rounded. You can´t take one strength from his game as he has too many. The best that you can do against him is be on your toes at all times and just always be ready for what he gives you.
This season with Dolomiti Energia Trento (Italy-Serie A) the club is in second place in the Italian Serie A and second in the Eurocup group. What has been the secret to the success of the team in both competitions?
We have come together very well as a team in the early stage of the season. We have many new players that have come from all over, but we are learning and growing together each day.
You are on a team that has three other Americans and Italians. You are averaging double figures in scoring. What exactly is your role on the team and is it any different to what you had in Braunschweig?
The role has been pretty similar to what I have had in Germany creating off the dribble for others and picking my spots on offense. I also try to hold my opponent on defense under his average and contribute on the rebound.
You are shooting an incredible 62,5% from outside in Eurocup play and getting many more looks there than in the Serie A. Has your role been different in the Eurocup action?
Each competition is different. With Eurocup teams have 2-3 days to prepare while in the Serie A teams have a whole week to watch film on you where they just have more time to prepare. It is my first season in the Eurocup and I am enjoying it.
You are a player that can fill up the stat sheet, but what do you feel is a hidden strength in your game that doesn´t get noticed right away on the court?
My athletic ability. Many don´t realize just how athletic I am and that I am able to make the break out play. I don´t look athletic and surprise people when they see my athleticism.
What kind of a positive influence has ex NBA player Julian Wright been for you in the first few months of the season? He is a player that really does so much on the court and impacts the game.
Julian is a great player and person on and off the court. He has played in the NBA and at the highest level in Europe and just has a lot of experience. He is also very important to have on the team moral wise because he is always positive.
Just a few years agoTrento was playing in the third Italian division. Do you feel a basketball atmosphere in town or is it much in the shadow of soccer?
I have been very impressed with the atmosphere and fans in Trento. For the rapid growth that has taken place in a very short time, all have grown and that makes it so special. The fans have rallied with the club as it´s grown and it´s cool to be a part of it.
You have had no problems adjusting to the Serie A in Italy. How would you compare it to the style of the Beko BBL in Germany and does this style fit you more?
The styles are different. The play is faster in Italy and in Germany you see more of a true 5 man while in Italy the big men are more versatile and can spread the floor more. I feel that both leagues fit my style.
Last season was your first in Europe in Germany with Braunschweig. What was your wake up call to being in Europe in your first season?
I think just realizing that you are living alone in a foreign country in a different culture was my wake up call. You have your teammates and coach, but at the end of the day you go home alone and that takes some time getting adjusted to.
What two single things will you always remember about Beko BBL veterans Derrick Allen and Immanuel Mcelroy that you won´t forget so quickly?
Those two guys were awesome. Braunschweig was my favorite team that I have ever been on in my career. I enjoyed all my teammates and we still stay in touch today and have group chat and check up on each other and poke some fun as well. It was a very family atmosphere and there were so many guys in different stages in their lives, but we all gelled and looked out after each other. What I remember most about D.A and Imac is their approach to the game and life and how they are still able to dominate and produce so well at that age at that level shows me just how professional they are. Their professionalism and the way they play the game is how anyone should play the game
As a rookie you were in the Sacramento Kings training camp. What kind of experience was that for you after spending some time seeing how the NBA works?
It was a blessing having this chance even if the timing wasn´t good, but it all happens for a reason. I really appreciate coach Malone and the ownership for giving me the opportunity. It was an overall great experience to be a part of.
What was it like battling a guy like then first round pick Ben Mclemore? After dueling day after day with a guy like that is there really such a big difference in skill level or are there just too many talented guys in the world and too little NBA jobs?
Ben is a great player and person. It was cool playing against veterans like John Salmons and learning and being able to pick their brains. When you play first division in Europe in places like Spain, Italy or Germany, you will compete against great players each night. At the end of the day there are limited jobs and it has to do with timing and the situation that a team has. One realizes this and understands it better as you get older.
You then moved to the Reno Bighorns (D-League) playing 48 games: 11.0ppg, 5.5rpg, 1.9apg, 1.0spg, FGP: 51.5%, 3PT: 42.0%, FT: 74.5%. What did you like and dislike about the D-league in general?
I liked having many games in the D-league and if you had a bad game, you could make it up with a good game soon and if you had a good game, you could pick up on the momentum in the next game. I didn´t like the travel and pay.
What kind of an impact did Reno assistant coach Tyrone Ellis make on you on and off the court? Ellis had a very long and fruitful career in Europe.
Ty had a big impact on me. He was awesome on the court and even more of an inspiration off the court. He brought different quotes to each practice. The way he conducted himself was very impressive and I try to emulate him. He taught me little tricks that I could get away with on the court and I tried to incorporate that into my game on offense and defense.
After three seasons at Arizona State(NCAA), you moved to Marquette(NCAA) for your senior year. How important was it going this route for your development as a player and person?
Going from Ariziona State to Marquette was personally one of the hardest decisions that I ever had to make. I learned very much about myself in this time when I look back on my life. I am glad that I did it and when I am having tough times, I can always look back in this time in my life and know I got through adversity.
Buzz Williams only coached you one season, but how did he prepare and groom you best to go on your way on a professional basketball path?
Buzz was awesome. He pushed me to limits that I had never seen before in my life. Whenever I am tired in a game now or am going through a tough period, I reflect back on my time at Marquette and remember that I had harder times there and that makes me push harder now.
What is the state of Lebron James in 2015? Will he ever be mentioned in the same breath as a Michael Jordan?
I think that he will be mentioned in the same breath as Michael Jordan one day if he isn´t already. Just looking how he has developed over time and the path he is on, he will be mentioned one day when all has been said and done with the best players that ever played the game
What was the last movie that you saw?
Saving Private Ryan.
Thanks Trent for the chat.