Kendall Timmons is a 27 year old 195cm guard from Fort Worth, Texas playing his fourth professional season and second with the Baskets Vilsbiburg (Germany-Regionalliga) currently averaging 18,5ppg, 12,2rpg and 4,9apg, 3,8spg and 1,0bpg. He played at Tulane(NCAA) from 2008-2013 playing a total of 117 games and as a senior played 31 games averaging 8.2ppg, 4.9rpg, 2.2apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 40.9%, 3PT: 25.9%, FT: 66.0%. He started his professional basketball career in 2013 with U.M.F. Grindavik (Iceland-Dominos League) playing 2 games averaging 14.5ppg, 9.0rpg, 1.5apg, in Dec.’13 moved to Jackson Showboats (ABA). In the 2013-2014 season he played with Sampaense Basket (Portugal-LPB, starting five): 21 games: 12.9ppg, 5.1rpg, 2.9apg, Steals-5(1.8spg), FGP: 54.8%, 3PT: 38.9%, FT: 61.9%. Last season he came to Germany to paly with the Baskets Vilsbiburg (Germany-Regionalliga) playing 15 games averaging 17.6ppg, 9.7rpg, 3.7apg, Steals-3(3.3spg), FGP: 60.6%, 3PT: 33.3%, FT: 59.1%. He spoke to German Hoops about his basketball career.
Kendall thanks for talking to German Hoops Thanksgiving came and went and for the fourth time in five years you were away from home for this big American holiday. What was your favorite childhood memory of thanksgiving?
My favorite memories of thanksgiving have to be all of the different foods and desserts that my family would make.
You are playing your second season with Baskets Vilsbiburg (Germany-Regionalliga). After being a runner up in the Regionalliga last season was it only logical for you to return to win it all this season and move up to the Pro B?
After finishing second last season only playing half of the season with the team, I thought that there would be a great chance of having another great season this year.
The club Baskets Vilsbiburg (Germany-Regionalliga) have started off well. The scoring really stands out as the club has scored 80 points or more in nine of it´s 13 games. Is this the team´s biggest strength at the moment?
I do think that because we are able to score a lot of points that it makes our team very difficult to play against because everyone is capable of contributing.
Do you see Baskets Vilsbiburg (Germany-Regionalliga) being able to move up this season? The club lost point guard John Boyer, but got some good support with French man Jordan Aboki. Is that enough? Is the team as deep and talented as last season?
John was a great player and leader for us. It is tough to replace a player like him. Jordan has been great for us and I feel that we all have had to step up our game to continue to be successful.
Your leading the team in scoring, rebounding, steals and blocks. How satisfied have you been with your game and is this the first time in your career that you have led a team in these categories? Last season John Boyer gave you a good run for the money in the statistical categories.
I don’t think any player is ever satisfied with their game. You can always do more and play better. John was incredible for us last year so I’m just trying to do my best to pick up where he left off.
Let´s talk a bit about your game. You are a guy that can score the ball and do a little of everything. To what NBA player would best describe your game?
I like how kawhi Leonard plays the game. He’s obviously one of the best players in the world right now. He does a little bit of everything for the Spurs while playing within the game and that’s what I try to do
You’re a guy that can really fill up the stat sheet, but what do you feel is a hidden strength in your game that still gets unnoticed on the court today?
I think my basketball IQ and knowledge of the game. I’ve been fortunate to have great coaches in the past who have challenged me to be a complete player and not just rely on my athleticism.
How much do you miss John Boyer? Do you feel like you have to do more this season without him on board. Do you feel added pressure having to take more responsibility?
John was a great teammate on and off the court last year so this year it was a little different at first not having his leadership and presence. I don’t feel any added pressure because my teammates are all very talented and we were able to play together for half the season last year.
A lot of guys make the jump from the Regionalliga to higher leagues in Germany like the Pro B the way Chris Hortman did this season. After a strong last season with Baskets Vilsbiburg (Germany-Regionalliga) averaging 17.6ppg, 9.7rpg, 3.7apg, Steals-3(3.3spg), FGP: 60.6%, 3PT: 33.3%, FT: 59.1%. Was there no interest from any Pro B teams last summer?
I didn’t have any interest from higher leagues but everything happens for a reason and I am very thankful that the club wanted me back for a full season.
You missed the entire 2015-2016 season and came to Vilsbiburg in December 2016. How difficult was it not playing a season? Often guys don´t find their way back to a team after missing a year.
It was extremely difficult to sit out for an entire season because there are so many new players each year but I knew if I kept working at it and stayed ready that I would be prepared when the next opportunity came.
In the 2014-2015 season you played your first full season in Europe with Sampaense Basket (Portugal-LPB) playing 21 games averaging 12.9ppg, 5.1rpg, 2.9apg, Steals-5(1.8spg), FGP: 54.8%, 3PT: 38.9%, FT: 61.9%. There you were teammates with Javarris Barnett who was third in scoring and fourth in rebounding in the league, but after four seasons as a professional never played again. Does it surprise you that he quit and is he a good example how quickly a basketball career can end if wanted or not?
JB was great for us in Portugal. He taught me a lot about being professional and playing in Europe. Everyone’s situation is different and that you ultimately have to do what is best for yourself and your family.
As a rookie you played with U.M.F. Grindavik (Iceland-Dominos League) playing only 2 games averaging 14.5ppg, 9.0rpg, 1.5apg. What was your wake up call to being a rookie in Europe where you knew that you were very far away from home in Fort Worth, Texas?
On the court it was the style of play. The style of play in college was completely different than in Europe. Off the court it had to be when there was an earthquake. It was not a big one but coming from Texas I had never experienced anything like that.
You finished the season with the Jackson Showboats (ABA). What was key in this experience that helped you rebound from your first experience to Iceland and come back and have a strong season in Portugal?
There was not one experience in particular but I loved how close everyone was and how hungry they were to get better and play in higher leagues.
You had a stellar 5 year career at Tulane(NCAA) averaging 11,1ppg, 5,3rpg and 2,1apg. How fortunate were you to play five years. How did your game benefit most from playing that extra year there?
That extra year allowed me to learn more on a basketball level and also allowed me to work on my body for the next level.
You had some very talented teammates like Jordan Callahan, Ricky Tarrant and Kris Richard that have all played in the German BBL. Do you sometimes wonder if the basketball God has punished you in a way for placing you in the Regionalliga? Those guys are super talented and good players, but so are you?
All those guys are great players and we still keep in touch. I played along side them for years in college so I know that I am capable of playing in the BBL if I keep working hard and focus on the things that I can control.
You played for two head coaches at Tulane(NCAA) with Dave Dickerson and Ed Conroy. How did they groom and prepare you best for a professional basketball career?
Both coaches were great during my time at Tulane. They coached players that have played in the NBA and in Europe top leagues. They helped to show me what it takes to be successful on and off the court once I finished college.
You played three years at Tulane(NCAA) with Kris Richard. What memories do you have of him on and off the court and how did you experience watching his game develop?
One of the memories that sticks out to me is when Kris welcomed me to college by dunking on me in our first practice. He was older than me so I was able to see him work each day and learn what it took to be a successful college player.
In your senior year you battled Syracuse(NCAA) losing 80-61 and you faced six future NBA players like Dion Waiters, James Southerland, Fab Melo, Michael Carter-Williams, Rakeem Christmas and Kris Joseph. You held your own scoring 16 points. When you look back at that team which of the lot impressed you the most?
The NBA has some of the most talented and athletic players in the world if not the best. That team was stacked with talent. However I was able to go out there and hold my own so I know that I have what it takes to play among the best.
Who was the toughest player that you battled in the NCAA that is in the NBA now?
Jordan Clarkson of the Lakers
If you had to construct your own NBA Rushmore which 4 heads would you chose?
Michael jordan. Lebron James. Kobe Bryant. Magic Johnson.
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 think Lebron is tied with Kobe Bryant for 2nd best all time. They’re two different players but in my opinion Michael Jordan is the best of all time.
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?
Russell Westbrook is one of the most competitive players in the league. I don’t want to believe he is more worried about his stats than he is winning games.
How do you summarize the 2017 NBA Draft. What sleepers do you see playing a role in the NBA?
So far this year I don’t think anyone can argue against Kyle Kuzma being the biggest steal or sleeper in the draft.
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?
I see Houston making it to the western conference finals but ultimately losing to the Warriors. They are just too good.
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?
Both teams won in my opinion. Thomas is hurt right now but I think that he wants a chance to win a championship and Kyrie wanted to be in control of his own team.
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 they all figure out how to play with each other and share the ball I think they will be one of the top teams in the west but they are still behind Golden State and Houston.
What was the last movie that you saw?
The last movie I saw was white chicks on Netflix.
Thanks Kendall for the chat.