Tyson Hinz is a 25 year old 20cm forward from Ottawa, Canada that completed his third professional season and first in Germany with the Mitteldeutscher BC helping them win the Pro A title averaging 8,4ppg, 3,9rpg and 1,6apg. He played the last two seasons with Landstede Basketbal Zwolle (Holland-Eredivisie) playing a total of 73 games and last season played 35 games averaging 13.3ppg, 7.5rpg, 1.8apg, 1.7spg, FGP: 49.5%, 3PT: 34.2%, FT: 76.6%. He started his basketball career at Carleton University (CIS) in 2009 and played there until 2014 playing a total of 123 CIS games and as a senior played 27 games averaging 15.4ppg, 6.1rpg, 2.7apg, FGP: 61.1%, 3PT: 42.4%, FT: 76.1%. There he won four CIS titles and three OUA titles. He spoke to German Hoops after the very successful 2016-2017 Pro A season.
Tyson congrats on an amazing season and winning the German Pro A with MBC. What kind of feeling was it winning your first professional title?
It was an amazing feeling. With how the Pro A works we had our first celebration when we qualified for promotion, which was fantastic but we all knew there was still something left to accomplish. I am glad the team was able to get the final two wins and finish the season knowing we accomplished our goal from the start.
You won 7 titles at Carleton and know what it likes to win titles. MBC was the favorite to win the Pro A title. Can a guy like you really even get emotional after a title like this compared to a guy like German Sergio Kerusch who won his second title after winning his first 8 years ago with the Sun Belt Tournament with W.Kentucky (NCAA).
Every championship is special, it doesn’t matter how many you have won. Every year is unique as you are with a different group of guys or a different club entirely. To celebrate the accomplishment as a team and to see the excitement on your teammates feelings who you’ve battled with all year is a wonderful feeling. Being the favourite to win put a target on our backs all year as everyone wanted to take us down but I thought we handled that as a team.
MBC had the number of Gotha this season going 4-0. I always felt Gotha had a well rounded roster, but was MBC just better from top to bottom?
Gotha had an incredible season. They ran into countless challenges with roster and coaching changes and managed to play their best basketball in the end. They unfortunately ran into some injury problems for the finals but their team as a whole still battled and fought hard which was admirable.
Gotha knew coming into the game that they had to win by 8 or more points, but lost by 22 points. MBC shot very well in the paint and won the rebound battle. What was key for winning the final series against Gotha?
In game 1, we really got beat badly on the boards. They crashed hard on both ends as a team and we weren’t ready to respond to that. I thought in the second game we played with much better team spirit and energy while doing so, took care of the rebounding battle.
The club went 8-0 in the playoffs sweeping the RheinStars, Kirchheim and Gotha. They won seven of the eight playoff games by double digits. Did MBC play their best basketball in the playoffs?
I believe we did. We really came together as a team and played the style of basketball we wanted to play. The key to making playoff runs is to be playing your best basketball at that time and we saw that with us and Gotha.
What is your season summary? MBC reached it´s goal of getting back to the BBL. Did MBC make the most of it´s resources or do you feel like the team could have been even better?
Finishing the year as champions and setting the total wins record (35-3) in the history of Pro A makes for quite a spectacular season. Obviously we would like to have those 3 losses back but they were part of our growth as a team. We learned from those losses and got better from them. The organization as a whole did an outstanding job putting together a championship caliber team from top to bottom.
MBC had a very very talented roster. What player do you feel improved the most from day one until the Pro A title last game win against Gotha?
It is really hard to pick a single player who was most improved. Our roster was filled with guys who could play so when someone outside of the starters had a great game no one was really surprised as we all know they had it in them.
You obviously will have many fond memories of American Andrew Warren like his 35 points against Gotha, but what one play or shot will always remain in your mind when you look back on this season and think of him?
I don’t know any one play or shot will stand alone when I look back more than his overall presence on the team. He is always the guy trying to motivate his teammates to help them play at the highest level and when as a team we were lacking energy or focus he would always get us back on the right track. I am fortunate to have played with him this year.
Let´s talk about your game. You averaged 8,4ppg, 3,9rpg and 1,6apg in 18 minutes per game and shot 34% from outside. For a guy who has always been a scorer in school and in Holland how do you feel did your game progress this season with your less of a role in comparison to the last years?
I learned a lot this year in my 3rd year as a pro. At the beginning of the year I did see it as less of a role but I think that was my problem. It is much more a different role than less of a role. Each player when they step on the floor has a role that is vital to the teams success. Not everyone can score 25+ a game, you need guys to defend, rebound and keep our rhythm in the game. As the year went on I tried to do all the little things to help our team win while still being aggressive looking for opportunities to score.
You stated in our last interview in November that you wanted to be efficient and get better as a defensive player in the Pro A. Did you meet these goals?
The great thing about basketball is there is always room for improvement, always something to improve. I think I reached those goals but as the season ends and the off season approaches the goals don’t fade away. I have a couple months to work on my game and prepare for next season
What is the next step for Tyson Hinz? The question is will MBC retain your services? Do you feel like your game would translate over to the BBL?
Only time will tell. As I am writing this we just won the championship the night before so there hasn’t been much time. I will speak to my agent and we will go from there.
On what parts of your game will you be working on this summer most to get you best prepared for your fourth professional season?
As I mentioned earlier, there is always room for improvement in all aspects of my game but I two things I would like to work on is my overall strength and foot speed. Throughout the year most of the weight lifting is done to maintain your body so that you are ready for games. Now that it is the off season I can have more time to recover
Your Canadian national team teammates Phil and Tommy Scrubb suffered the injury bug this season. What will you be looking most to when you see them again in the summer on the court or with the Canadian national team?
It is truly unfortunate that both of them weren’t able to play much or at all this season. I am looking forward to seeing them healthy this summer. Since they have been out for a while I am sure their competitive side has had them dying to get back on the court so they will be fun to play with or against.
What are your summer plans? Do you have anything special planned or will you just be staying at home with the family and working on your game?
Nothing too special this summer. Just staying in my home town of Ottawa and training. Now that the season is done I am excited to get home and see my family.
Devin Booker recently hit the Boston Celtics for 70 points. Did it surprise you that a guy like him was able to do that before many other amazing NBA scorers?
The talent level in the league is off the charts. When one of these guys is feeling it as we’ve seen many times they can truly go off. It is impressive at his age what he was able to accomplish.
Where do you rank Boston Celtic Isaiah Thomas at the moment with the best point guards in the NBA? Is he a top 3 point guard at the moment behind Westbrook and Harden?
Isaiah Thomas has had an incredible season and playoffs. I am impressed with how he dealt with the passing of his sister and continued to play at a high level. Now that the Raptors are out I hope they can dethrone Lebron.
How special was the run of South Carolina at the 2017 NCAA tournament? Do you feel like this was the story of March Madness 2017`?
Every year we see these incredible runs at the NCAA tournament, it is what makes this tournament so exciting to watch. I think the story of March Madness is always the team that wins, that is what all 64 teams in the tournament are dying to accomplish but only one can win it.
Is Lonzo Ball the real thing? Do you feel like he will be able to develop further despite the antics of his father on social media?
To be honest I haven’t got the chance to watch many Lonzo games but from his highlights and what I have read about him he can truly play. Would not consider myself a fan of his father but I feel like that is his M.O to promote his brand. Through his obnoxious methods he is actually doing a pretty good job at it so I can respect that.
There has been criticism of Russell Westbrook to be focusing more on rebounding to help inflate his stats and possibilities of getting triple doubles instead of focusing on his defensive assignments. Do you feel that this is a fair assessment to the player Russell Westbrook?
I think we focus too much on the triple double. Westbrook is a hell of a player and a freak athlete but whether he gets 9 rebounds or 10 shouldn’t change the way we look at him as a player. You don’t get any extra points for grabbing that 10th rebound in the dying seconds of a 20 point game.
Recently there was talk that the Morris brothers did a switcharo in Boston in game 2 where Morris stepped in for Markieff who was nursing an injury. Do you think something like that can be even possible with all the scrutiny and all the technical gadgets that are around. Could something like that not get detected?
I loved this conspiracy, despite it being completely asinine or was it? I don’t know the full rules of the NBA but I don’t think they are allowed to DNA test after a game. Being twins with countless matching tattoos they could easily fool many people.
What was the last movie that you saw?
Thanks Tyson for the chat.