Alex Foster is a 23 year old 203cm forward that grew up in Portland, Oregon and also has the German citizenship and is playing his professional rookie season in Germany with the RheinStars(Germany-ProA). He played at Emory (NCAA3) from 2011-2015 playing a total of 108 NCAA3 games and as a senior played 20.1ppg, 7.9rpg, 1.0apg, FGP: 44.6%, 3PT: 39.9%, FT: 79.8%. He was able to improve his scoring and rebounding average each season. He spoke to German Hoops after the RheinStars 74-69 loss against the Hebeisen White Wings Hanau.
Alex thanks for talking to German Hoops. A tough 74-69 loss to the Hebeisen Baskets Hanau. After an offensive second and third quarter, where did both teams find the energy to buckle down and give that extra on the defensive end in the fourth quarter?
We’re fighting to end over a month of losing, so there’s plenty of motivation to give everything we can to win. I think that showed in the intensity of the game last night, we just didn’t do enough to win.
The Hebeisen White Wings Hanau had an annoying 8-0 run to start the fourth quarter. Was that the ultimate dagger that cut into the heart of the RhieinStars?
We fought till the end, but we made too many mistakes down the stretch, which kept us from taking back the lead. We gave up way too many offense rebounds and also missed free throws. If we would have taken care of those things, we could have came up on top.
The RheinStars got crushed on the boards 53-28. Do you ever remember getting hit for 22 offensive rebounds in your career?
I honestly don’t know. Not that I can remember.
Kruize Pinkins had the number of the RheinStars this season combining for 38 rebounds and this time around had an even better game with 25 points and 20 rebounds. What makes this guy seemingly impossible to control?
He’s a tough match up physically and has a nose for the ball. Their whole team crashes the glass hard, which puts pressure on the defense to control the rebound. Last night, every time a ball bounced around, it ended up in their hands.
If you could pick one positive thing from this loss, could one laud the overall defense which kept a very strong team at the moment to 74 points?
Our defense was alright, but we also need to do some things much better to get back to winning. I also think we are starting to move the ball better, which we need to continue to work on too.
Hanau is one of the hottest teams in the German Pro A and are closer than ever of reaching the playoffs. How has the team improved since your first meeting in Hanau?
I respect the intensity they brought on the road. You could tell they were driven to win, which is something we can learn from them. Like us, they’re not the most talented team. Yet they make the most of their abilities and play together, which wins games.
The RheinStars Cologne are riding a 7 game losing streak. Reaching the playoffs was never a goal, but the team was in the playoff race for a long time. Is the team mentally even prepared to think about it now or is it better just to go one game at a time and finish the season strong?
I think we have to play for ourselves and then see what happens. For me, its not about the playoffs, it’s about making every day count. It’s hard to play your game when you’re focusing on the end result. Instead, if we go possession by possession, day by day, we’ll have a chance to end the losing streak.
The RheinStars are a very young team. Is the fact that the season is very long that the club has felt the fatigue factor as of late as a reason for the team fading?
We can’t make any excuses for our recent struggles. I think we have to take responsibility and fix it.
The club has only averaged 66 points in the seven game losing streak. Why has the team had had so much trouble putting points on the board?
Losing game after game puts a weight on your back and I think we’ve gotten too tight because of it. It shows on offense for sure. For a while, we were looking at each other to make plays, or trying to force things individually. We’ve put an emphasis on moving the ball and running hard, so we can get better looks for each other.
What will be key for the team now to get out of this funk besides sticking together?
We need to reestablish a winning-posture and enjoy the time we have together as a team. Not in a happy-go-lucky way, but with the purpose of making the most of our season.
As the season winds down, you keep working on improving your three point shot. As a rookie, it is more than understandable to have ups and downs, but how comfortable do you feel momentarily with the progress? You hit three against Hanau after two games of being 0/6.
I’ve been sticking around the gym to get up extra shots, which is the only way to get out of a shooting slump that I know. I was 1-3 from the line yesterday, so I’ll be getting in lots of free throws this week.
As a rookie how have you felt the effects of a long season? How have you been able to handle this seven game losing streak best mentally?
I definitely have had to take better care of my body. Eating well sustains my energy week after week, and I’ve also made sure to treat all the injuries I’ve sustained throughout the season, so I can stay on the court. As for the losing streak, I try to stay present-minded, to not get too caught up in it.
How did you see the NBA trades recently at the deadline? What teams did the best?
I appreciate good deals, so I liked Portland getting a future first-round draft pick for nothing but cap-space.
Some of the older NBA players that played at different times are having a hard time giving Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors credit for their success saying they might not have had that success 20-30 years ago. Are these former players just jealous or why can´t they just give credit where it´s due?
Every player has a natural tendency to hang on to their past accomplishments, but to not give the Warriors credit is silly. The NBA is as competitive as ever and their regular season run is remarkable.
Recently ESPN made a top 100 greatest NBA players of alltime poll putting Lebron at #3 before legends Larry Bird, Magic Johnson and BIll Russell. Do you see that as being justified?
It’s impossible to truly justify any kind of player ranking. It’s all just opinions. The way I look at it, players should be evaluated by how much they mean to their team. So Lebron is definitely up there.
What was the last movie that you saw?
Deadpool. I love super hero movies and this one was like nothing I’d seen before.
Thanks Alex for the chat.