Brandon Lockhart is a 25 year old 185cm guard from St Louis, Missouri that is playing hiss econd professional season and first with German team Giants Nordlingen. AS a rookie he played for BK Levicki Patrioti (Slovakia-Extraliga) playing 34 games: Score-5(16.7ppg), 3.8rpg, Assists-5(4.3apg), Steals-1(3.0spg), FGP: 50.2%, 3PT: 28.5%, FT: 78.9%. He played at Drury (NCAA2) from 2009-2013 and as a senior played 35 games averaging 12.5ppg, 3.9rpg, 6.1apg, 2.9spg, FGP: 50.9%, 3PT: 48.3%, FT: 77.1%. He spoke to German Hoops after the big 91-72 victory against BG Karlsruhe.
Congrats on the huge 91-72 win in Karlsruhe. How big was the revenge factor after losing to BG Karlsruhe at 74-59?
Thank you Miles! I do not think we were too focused on our first meeting with them because we knew that we were a much different team from when we first played them. But it’s always good to beat a team that beat you earlier.
The Giants Nordlingen had some big wins this season, but was this the biggest win of the season?
Right now, it’s the biggest win of the season because it is our most recent win. I believe all the wins are equal because they help us get closer to achieving a spot in the playoffs.
How was the bus ride back home? Was there big time celebrating or is the team more subdued knowing that there is still work to be done?
I would not say that there was big time celebrating, but we were happy to leave Karlsruhe with a victory! But our focus is now shifting to next weeks game because we know that we still have other goals to accomplish before the regular season ends.
The game was pretty tight for 30 minutes, but Nordlingen exploded for 29 points in the fourth quarter. Coming into the fourth quarter, did you think that the team could have this much energy on offense and defense to win by 19 points?
The game was a battle the entire night so I never thought for one second that things would end up like that. BG Karlsruhe is a really good team and has proven that all year. Luckily we were able to expand our lead early in the 4th which forced them into doing some things they’re not accustomed to.
Did the team self confidence grow throughout the game knowing that you could play with the first ranked team which led to that big 29 point fourth quarter?
We knew they were a good team and that they played really well at home, so we just wanted to execute our game plan and give ourselves a chance at the end. We hoped that if we kept it close throughout, the pressure would shift in their direction. So keeping the game close definitely gave us confidence!
The usual BG Karlsruhe scorers Marcus Smallwood, Rouven Roessler and Paul Brotherson supplied punch, but how key was it keeping American Hayden Lescault in check and disrupting his play as he can create well, but coughed up the ball six times?
Hayden is a good player and had been playing extremely well as of late. He is tough to guard because not only can he create for himself, but he also gets the rest of his team involved. So we just really wanted to focus on making everything he wanted to do a struggle.
The trio of Talbert, Lockhart and Schmidkunz combined for 69 points. How much fun is it playing together and how good a reason is this consistent play warrant thinking about staying together for the future?
Being able to be playing basketball with this group of guys has been a blast all season. Everyone gets along on and off the court which makes our chemistry even better. I do not know what the future holds but I would not be against having the opportunity to play ball with these guys again.
How proud were you of Leo Vrkas. In the last two games he is 9/18 from outside while in the three games before that he was 1/20. He is feeling it at the moment.
Very proud because most people would get down on themselves and forget about other parts of the game if they go through such a shooting slump. But Leo has remained positive and did not let it interfere with other aspects of the game. He is a good shooter so we knew he would eventually make shots for us again.
How has Vrkas grown throughout the season and can he become that consistent fourth scorer the team could really need?
He has gotten better each day and I believe he can be another scorer for us because he is that capable of a shooter. When he is hitting shots, it makes us a better offensive team.
The team is now 3-0. What happened to the team since that 78-56 loss at home against Frankfurt which head coach Mario Matic really took to heart?
We moved past it and just got focused for our next game. Frankfurt was just better than us that day. So hats off to them! That loss broke the winning streak we were on and made us want to work harder to put together another winning streak. So that loss was a blessing in disguise for us you could say.
The club has given up 74 points on average in the last three games. In what area has the team improved most on in the last three weeks?
We have really been trying to improve our 1 on 1 defense as of late because that makes your team defense much better if you are not constantly having to help. Defense and rebounding has been a focus of ours all year and I’m sure it will be until the end of season.
You stopped a tough Scanplus Baskets, contained Ricky Easterling and now beat BG Karlsruhe. What is next for the Giants Nordlingen? Suddenly Nordlingen has become a playoff team and in third place?
Just one game at a time, so our focus is now on Weissenhorn. They have a good young team that is also trying to make the playoffs just like us. We managed to come out with a tough win when they visited Nordlingen. So we have to prepare for a tough game at their place.
Who will win the Superbowl Denver or Carolina?
New England Patriots!! haha! Since my team is out, I am just hoping for a good game but I believe the Panthers will come out victorious
What was the last movie that you saw?
Sherlock Holmes – A Game of Shadows.
Thanks Brandon for the chat.