Tim Abromaitis is a 28 year old 203cm forward from Farmington, Connecticut playing his sixth professional season and third with Iberostar Tenerife CB Canaria(SPAIN ACB). Last season he played 29 ACB games averaging 6.6ppg, 3.9rpg, FGP: 52.2%, 3PT: 37.7%, FT: 87.5%. In the BCL he played 20 games helping the club win the title averaging 9.1ppg, 5.3rpg, 1.1apg, FGP: 63.3%, 3PT: 45.5%, FT: 88.6%. He also gathered experience playing in France with ASVEL Lyon-Villeurbanne Basket and Strasbourg IG and in Germany with the Basketball Lowen Braunschweig. He played college ball at Notre Dame (NCAA) from 2007-2012. He spoke toGerman Hoops before the Basketball Champions League game against the MHP Riesen Ludwigsburg.
Tim thanks for talking to German Hoops. Welcome back to Germany. It´s been three years since you played in Germany with Braunschweig. Has time flown by since you last played in Germany professionally?
It definitely doesn’t feel like three years have passed since I was playing in Germany so I would say that time has flown by. Maybe it seems that way to me because I’ve only been on one team since that season.
Your playing your third season for Iberostar Tenerife CB Canarias (Spain-Liga ACB) and preparing for the MHP Riesen Ludwigsburg. You split with Braunschweig and lost In Ludwigsburg, but played a good game scoring 16 points, getting seven rebounds and dishing out six assists. What memories do you have of that game?
I remember that was a really big game for us at the end of the year. If we had won then we would have had a really good chance at the playoffs, but unfortunately we couldn’t get it done and they took the last playoff spot over us.
Your playing your third season with Iberostar Tenerife CB Canarias(ACB). As a guy coming from the cold Connecticut winters how close to paradise are you at living in Tenerife?
The weather is incredible here in Tenerife. This is the first warm place where I’ve ever lived so I always take advantage of opportunities to be outside and enjoy this climate.
Iberostar Tenerife CB Canarias is playing up and down in the ACB, but are at the top of their group in the Basketball Champions League. What has been the secret for having more success in the international club play?
I think we’ve had a lot of success in the Champions League because we prepare for all of the games so well. We have good scouting reports and game plans in place which helps us gain an advantage. Also the experience of playing in the league and winning the championship last year gives us a lot of confidence for this season.
Your playing your third season with ex BBL player Davin White What kind of relationship have you built up with him over the last years and is White still playing with a chip on his shoulder after toiling many years in Mexico before making the jump to Germany in 2012 and then reaching the ACB?
Davin and I have had a great relationship since the beginning in Tenerife, both on and off the court. I don’t think he has any chip on his shoulder since he’s proven over and over again how good of a player he really is.
What kind of relationship have you built with American Mike Tobey who comes from New York and went to school in western Connecticut at Hotchkiss? Even though you play different positions how have you profited from each other on the court?
Mike and I are really good friends and have that connection because of our similar pasts. He’s having a great season so far, and a beast like him inside definitely makes it easier for rebounding and also opening up the game on the perimeter.
How proud have you been coming to a new ACB team and help them reach the playoffs and win a title in 2017 in only your second season? What have been some of the reasons for the rise of this organization?
I think a lot of things have come together to allow us to have success since I arrived here. We’ve had really talented players, but also had solid chemistry and discipline within the team. Also, a lot of the players have experience at a high level which shows when we are in tough situations on the court.
What was special about last years team that won the Basketball Champions League? What was the secret to going all the way?
We had an incredible balance last year, so even when somebody like Javi Beiran got hurt or one guy wasn’t having a good game, other players could step up and we could still get the job done.
I believe when a club has an Aaron Doornekamp and Tim Abromatis, you can´t go wrong as you have two guys with unending basketball IQ. What did you end up appreciating most about his game?
Aaron has a great work ethic, and takes all of the little steps in preparation to be such a good player. He’s a great guy, but once he steps on the court he’s got a whole different competitive personality and that’s something I’ve tried to take away from my experience playing with him.
Let´s talk a little about your game. You a 203cm forward that can fill up the stat sheet. To what NBA player would you best describe your game to and what is a hidden strength in your game that doesn´t always get noticed right away?
I think the best comparison would be a big shooter, so maybe somebody like Ryan Anderson. However, I think I move pretty well on the court so being able to defend different positions and make hustle plays is something that probably doesn’t jump out right away about my game.
Your playing your third season in the ACB. What goals do you have now since reaching the ACB is being near or at the top. You already played Euroleague with Strasburg. What more goals do you have?
I expect getting back to a Euroleague team? I would love to have the opportunity to play in Euroleague again but for now I’m just focused on having the best possible season we can have with Tenerife.
Your stats haven´t been as high as what you did at Braunschweig, but how do you feel have you become a better player in the ACB that has allowed you not to shine with the most overwhelming stats?
I’ve tried to grow as a player every year and I definitely think I’ve improved since Braunschweig. I’ve been able to fit in really well with the players around me in Tenerife and the level of talent here has allowed me to take on a different role while still having team success.
Everybody has their own special Derrick Allen story. You must of caught something at a practice concerning his relentless work etic where you were flat out amazed?
My first memory of DA’s attitude was walking in the gym 2 hours before our first home game and seeing him already on the court in a full sweat. He was a great veteran teammate to play with and his work ethic obviously helped him reach his legend status.
In your second season in Europe you played for Strasburg. How important was this season in your development considering you had three major veterans with Lou Campbell, Marvis Thornton and David Anderson?
That season was really important for me to learn a lot about European basketball. We had great veteran leaders like Lou, Bootsy, David and Ricardo Greer, and Coach Collet with a lot of experience at a high level. Having those resources and playing Euroleague definitely opened my eyes to the kind of success that is possible in Europe.
As a rookie you played for ASVEL Lyon-Villeurbanne Basket (France-ProA playing 35 games averaging 8.3ppg, 3.9rpg, FGP: 57.1%, 3PT: 40.7%, FT: 82.6%. What was your wake up call to being a rookie in France where you knew that you were very far away from home?
The biggest wake up call happened during preseason, when the team made roster changes before we had even played any real games. I realized quickly how it is all a business and to not be surprised by anything that can happen.
You played at Notre Dame(NCAA) from 2007-2012 sitting out the 2008-2009 season. How did you arrive on campus as a player and how complete were you by the end?
I think I arrived at Notre Dame as a good all-around player but grew a lot physically during my time there. The strength and conditioning was a big focus for us, especially in the offseason, and that helped my game a lot.
How tough was it for you and Tyrone Nash being in the shadow of Luke Harangody? Did the competitiveness help make you a better player in the first half of your time there?
It was tough for Ty and me to not get a lot of playing time during our first two years at Notre Dame but we both worked hard and pushed each other. We also learned a lot from Luke since he’s an incredible player and knew what it took to be successful there.
How did head coach Mike Brey groom and prepare you best for a professional basketball career at Notre Dame(NCAA)?
Even though Coach Brey’s system is very different from anything I’ve experienced in Europe he was the perfect coach to have in college. He encouraged me to be a more versatile player and gave me the confidence to be able to have a successful college and pro career.
Who won a one on one in practice you or Tyrone Nash?
I don’t remember playing much one on one with him, but he is a great defender so I think it could go either way.
You played for the United States at the 2011 University Games and was teammates with Draymond Green who was going into his senior year at Michigan. What kind of experience was it playing with him and were there any signs then that he would become the type of player he is today?
It was a fun experience playing with a group of really talented players, including Draymond. I wouldn’t have predicted he would grow into the player he is now, but I’m glad to see him doing so well.
Who was the best player that you battled at the NCAA level that gave you most fits on the court and is in the NBA now?
Jimmy Butler was always a tough matchup, and another guy who I’m glad to have watched grow into such a high-level NBA player.
If you had to construct your own NBA Rushmore which 4 heads would you chose?
Lebron, Kevin Durant, Steph Curry and James Harden.
Lebron James failed to win his fourth NBA title and is still three away from Michael Jordan. Where does Lebron stand right now in your opinion in the never ending debate of who is the best of all-time?
I hate the “who’s the best” debates because it’s all so subjective and there’s no true answer. Lebron is one of the best ever but where he belongs in any list like that isn’t for me to say.
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 haven’t watched enough Thunder games in the past couple years to know if he does that, but I do appreciate the intensity and excitement he brings to every single game he plays in.
How do you summarize the 2017 NBA Draft. What sleepers do you see playing a role in the NBA?
I will have to watch more NCAA games this year to really know who the best players are for this draft. The only player I really know about is Doncic from playing against Real Madrid, and to me he’s already such a tough player that I can’t imagine he won’t also succeed in the NBA.
Where will the journey of the Houston Rockets go this season with Chris Paul and James Harden in the back court. Do they have enough to make a serious run at the title or is something missing?
Obviously with two players like that they’ll win a lot of games. The Warriors are still the clear favorites to me but the playoffs are a long way off and I’m excited to see how it all plays out.
How do you rate the Kyrie Irving-Isaiah Thomas trade? Who got the better deal and which team will profit better in the long run?
It’s still too early to say because Thomas hasn’t been playing. Like the Rockets-Warriors, that will be another matchup I’m looking forward to in the playoffs.
Where will the journey of the Oklahoma Thunder go this season with Westbrook, George and Anthony? Can they make a serious run in the west?
Once again I think they’ll win more games as the season goes on, but the west is tough and even if they make a run the Warriors will be standing in the way.
What was the last movie that you saw
Thanks Tim for the chat.