Preston Medlin is a 25 year old 193cm guard that will be starting his third professional season and first with the Kirchheim Knights in the German Pro A. He started his basketball career in 2009 with Utah St. (NCAA) where he played until 2014 playinga total of 102 NCAA games. As a senior he played 32 games averaging 12.4ppg, 2.7rpg, 4.1apg, FGP: 41.1%, 3PT: 42.4%, FT: 78.0%. He started his professional basketball career in 2014 with BK Saldus (Latvia-LBL): 29 games: Score-4(14.7ppg), 3.1rpg, 3.0apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 49.5%, 3PT: 42.7%, FT: 75.8%. Last season he had limited duty with Enosi Kalathosfairisis Kavalas (Greece-A1): 3 games: 3.7ppg, 1.0rpg, 1.3apg. German Hoops talked to Preston about basketball.
. Congrats on signing with German Pro A team Kirchheim Knights. After a strong rookie season in Latvia, you had your second season cut short in Greece. How much do you feel as if your still coming out of your rookie season now and looking to make a new step in Germany.
Thanks for welcoming me to Germany, I am very excited to get to Kirchheim and experience German culture. Even though my season was cut short in Greece I still feel that I was able to work hard and still get better as a player so I feel that I have improved my game even though I didn’t get a whole season in.
Did you seek any advice from your ex teammate at Utah State Danny Berger about the country Germany and it´s basketball?
Yes I talked to Danny a lot about Germany and his experience and he had nothing but great things to say about the German people, their culture and of course how good the basketball is.
What do you know about basketball in Germany? Could you name the current 3 German players in the NBA and who was recently drafted by the Chicago Bulls?
I know that Germany was great support for basketball and that they have really good players and I am looking forward to learning more about German basketball when I am living in Kirchheim. As for German basketball players in the NBA of course I Know Dirk ( I am actually from Dallas I am a big Dirk fan), Dennis Schroder, and Tibor Pleiss. I will admit that I didn’t know who the German basketball player that was drafted by the Bulls is but I do now.
After a very short second professional season with what of an approach did you go into the summer transfer period? How vital was picking a very good situation for you to get back to where you were after your rookie season?
Going into the transfer period my goal was to find a team that believed in me and was a stable situation and I feel that I got everything I wanted with Kirchheim.
What was most important in signing on the dotted line with the Kirchheim Knights?
I really just like how professional the organization is and that they are going to put me in a lot of situation to win basketball games and that is what it is all about for me.
Did you have any talks with head coach Michael Mai? Did you notice that you speak the same basketball language?
Yes I have got to talk to coach Mai a few times and that is one of the reason why I chose Kirchheim. He is a great guy and I am really looking forward to working with him and my other teammates. For the little bit of time we talked I did feel like we had a lot of similarities in our basketball language
After your short season with Enosi Kalathosfairisis Kavalas (Greece-A1) do you feel like you have something to prove this season in Germany?
I feel like every time I step on the court I feel that I have something to prove. I guess this year I might have a little more to prove
Do you feel confident with your game that you can make an impact with the Kirchheim Knights?
I do feel confident in my game and I am looking forward to helping the Knights be the best team we can be for this season. Whatever it takes to help the team I am willing to do.
. How excited are to be playing against ex Utah State teammates Danny Berger and Morgan Grim this season? Has the friendly trash talking already begun this summer?
I am very excited to play against these guys it should be really fun. It will be a lot nicer knowing some guys I am play against. There is always friendly trash talk going on with me and Danny whether it is about basketball or me always beating him in super smash bros it dosen´t not really matter. We like to have a good time and joke around about things.
Do you feel like going to Enosi Kalathosfairisis Kavalas (Greece-A1) last season was a step to soon going from the Latvian level to the Greek level? Why was your stay in Greece so short?
I don’t think it was a step to soon I just think the team was looking for a combo guard and that’s why they signed me but then for whatever reason they wanted more of a 2/3 and in the end it just didn’t work out.
Let´s talk about your game. You’re a very good shooter as you shot over 40% from outside in two of your last seasons at Utah State. How would you describe your game best and what else do you bring to the table besides shooting?
From a young age I was taught how to shot so that is one thing I am very comfortable doing. Also in my game I just try to make the best play for the team whether that is shooting the ball, passing the ball, or setting a good screen I am willing to do it all.
You can fill up the stat sheet, but what would you say is a hidden strength in your game that doesn´t get noticed right away on the court?
One area of basketball that I think gets overlooked is my ability to pass the ball, I might not be super fancy or throw a no look pass but I think I usually make the right pass to get my teammate a open shot.
As a rookie you played for BK Saldus (Latvia-LBL): 29 games: Score-4(14.7ppg), 3.1rpg, 3.0apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 49.5%, 3PT: 42.7%, FT: 75.8%. What was your wake up call to being a rookie where you knew that you were very far away from home?
Well I thought Latvia was a cool country but it is a lot different than the USA so I think the first full day in Latvia I had a culture shock but once I got over that I settled in and had a good time there.
You played at Utah State and had a very illustrious career. How tough was not being able to take part in the 2011WAC final?
It always tough when you can´t be out on the floor with your teammates that you have be grinding with the whole season but in the end it was good for me to redshirt and have an extra year to develop my body and my game.
You played three seasons with Danny Berger at Utah State before he transferred to BYU-Hawaii (NCAA2) where he was able to bloosom and continued that as a rookie in Germany last season. What did you always respect about his game?
Danny Berger is a really good basketball player, there is a lot of things that he does really well on the basketball court, he is a great shooter, a underrated passer, and an unbelievable jumper. I really am looking forward to playing against him and only living 45 minutes from him will be amazing.
How did head coach Stew Morril groom and prepare you best for a professional career at Utah State?
Coach Morrill was the greatest coach I have ever played for just being at practice every day I learned so much. He taught me a lot about the X’s and O’s of basketball and how to come to practice every day ready to get better as a player.
Who won a one on one in practice you or Spencer Butterfield?
Well if you ever ask me who won more I am always going to say that I won no matter if it is true or not. I am sure Spencer will say the same thing so I don’t think we will ever be able to prove who one more.
Who was the best player that you battled against in the NCAA that is in the NBA or Europe now?
In college I played against a lot of very talented player but the best being Paul George, Damien Lillard, and Jaycee Carroll who I played pickup basketball with at our college.
Now that Lebron finally brought an NBA title home, where does this further ring put him in the debate against Michael Jordan as the all-time best ever?
This is a question that will always talked about for the rest of my life. I really like Lebron and I think he is getting really close to Jordan but I don’t want to compare them before Lebron’s career is over. I think he has a chance to pass him but we will see if he can.
If you had to construct an NBA Rushmore which 4 heads would you choose?
Michael Jordan, Tim Duncan, LeBron James, Larry Bird
What was the last movie that you saw?
Bourne Ultimatum, I am getting ready for the new Bourne movie to come out.
Thanks Preston for the chat.