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 big 79-58 victory against Oldenburg
Brandon thanks for talking to German Hoops Congrats on the huge 79-58 win. With what kind of a feeling did you go into this do or die game. Were you a little nervous or were you able to block out the major importance of the game?
Hello and thank you Miles! I was not too nervous before this game because we had a good week of practice leading up to this game. I have a ton of confidence in my team’s abilities. So that really helps to eliminate any nerves going into games
When you look back at your basketball career how successful have you been in do or die games and what importance and standing did this game weigh in comparison to early game?
I like to believe that I have had more success than failure when it comes to do or die games. Since this was the most recent do or die game I’ve been in, I would say this was the most important one.
The Giants Nordlingen lost game two 82-72. What lesson did the team learn in general from the game two loss?
We learned that we needed to rebound if we wanted to have a chance to win game 3. I do not remember the exact numbers but I believe they had 20+ more rebounds than us in game 2.
At halftime, Nordlingen led 38-35. What did head coach Mario Matic tell the team to do better in the third half which the team heeded to and did on the court?
They were creating and making a bunch of open shots in the first half. They have some players that can really make shots so we wanted to at least make the shots they made were contested and not wide open.
Nordlingen exploded in the third quarter going on a 26-9 run to seal the win. What adjustments did the team do in general to totally sway the game in your favor?
Our defense in the third quarter improved and it allowed us to get in transition for easier buckets.
When the Nordlingen offense is in full swing like it was in the third quarter is the opponents defense no matter what they throw at you helpless?
To get our offense in full swing, we have to focus more on defense. That’s when we get to get in transition, our best offense, and score against a defense not set.
One could say when the big three of you, Brandon, Janek and Leo Vrkas score in double figures and combine for 70 points and the defense is spot on that the club has very good chances of winning?
On any night, we could have 3 or 4 players combine for high scoring totals. But it’s all about our defense. If our defense is on point, we can compete with anyone in the league.
You had another normal day at the office with 16 points and 5 rebounds, 3 assists and 5 steals. Do you feel like you will have to raise your game even more against the forthcoming difficult series against Iserlohn?
I don’t think myself or anyone on the team needs to do anything different from what we’ve done all year. It’s going to be a tough series, but we play our best basketball when we play as a team.
Despite your solid offensive showing, is this the kind of game where your most pleased with your defensive effort helping to allowing only 58 points?
Yes! Because we know to be successful, we have to play good defense nightly. Holding a team with a bunch of capable scorers under 60 is definitely something to be proud of.
Oldenburg have many young talented young Germans. After seeing talented German big man Jan Niklas Wimberg three times in the post season, what was your overall impression of him and his game and how far can a guy like that go in professional basketball?
I was impressed by his game. He has the ability to score in the post, off the dribble, and shoot the 3. So he is really a tough match up for opposing teams. He has the potential to be a major player in the BBL here if he really wants it. He has the size and skill to be successful.
With what positives can the Giants Nordlingen go into the next difficult series against Iserlohn?
If we play defense and do not get demolished in the rebound battle, we have a chance to win most nights.
How excited are you to be playing another opponent that you didn´t face in the regular season? What are you looking most to in this series?
Extremely excited because it’s always fun to play against a new opponent. I’m just looking forward to playing more games with this team. It will be a tough challenge and I’m just excited to get back at it!
The bench could be the biggest factor in the series. What else will be key to getting by the top team of the Pro B north?
We know they have a solid rotation of about 9-10 guys but that does not really change the keys for us. Our keys to competing in this series will be good defense and securing rebounds.
Were you surprised that Oklahoma lost by 44 points to Villanova?
I was incredibly surprised by the outcome of that game. I did not expect for the game to be such a blowout.
Who will win the NCAA 2016 title North Carolina or Villanova and what will the score be?
I am a Duke fan so no way am I picking UNC lol. But even if I was not a Duke fan, I still would like Villanova in this game. They are just playing extremely well right now. 92-80
What was the last movie that you saw?
Thanks Brandon for the chat.