Jarelle Reischel is a 26 year old 199cm forward that recently completed his second professional season with PS Karlsruhe Lions (ProA) averaging 13,9ppg, 5,9rpg, 3,0apg and 1,8spg. Last season as a rookie he played with Vechta (BBL) and the Westchester Knicks (D-League). He was born in South Carolina and grew up in Frankfurt, Germany. He headed back to the states in 2008 and returned in 2016. He played at Pleasant Beach HS an dthen played for three NCAA schools with Rice, Rhode Island and E Kentucky playing a total of 125 games. He had his break out season as a senior at E.Kentucky (NCAA) playing 30 games averaging 17.9ppg, 6.8rpg, 3.2apg, 1.7spg, FGP: 53.4%, 3PT: 38.1%, FT: 78.4%. He signed with the Telekom Baskets Bonn today and actually had sat down with German Hoops in May after his season had ended with PS Karlsrruhe.
Jarelle thanks for talking to German Hoops. Where are you at the moment and what have you been mainly doing days after your season ended?
At the moment I am still in karlsruhe and since the season ended I been mainly hanging out with my teammates we are such a close group
Congrats on an amazing season with PS Karlsruhe. Two years ago they were still in the Regionalliga and this season was one of the four best teams in the Pro A. Just comparing the talent on this team with so many of the other dep Pro A teams would you ever have expected last September that the team would go so far?
We all expected that we would go this far.Everyone in the program knew what kind of talent we had. Our expectations were high amongst us and the outside just didn’t know that because we have so many names that were just question marks
PS Karlsruhe finished the regular season losing 6 of it´s last 9 games. Was there some uncertainty and precaution going into the playoffs?
Nothing was going on we just couldn’t find a good rhythm. We have to give the other teams in the league credit it was a very strong league this year
You didn´t only sweep the RheinStars, but destroyed them. Were you a bit surprised how easily PS Karlsruhe disposed of them? What was key in this series win?
Surprised not but I knew what this team is capable of doing if we stick together as one and play tremendous defense. We showed flashes of it all season. We just put it together during the playoffs. The key was to play tough smart and together for 40mins and good things usually happened
What was wrong with the RheinStars? They had huge ambitions to reach the easyCredit BBL. Do you feel it all effected them mentally and became too much to handle?
We made it very tough for Koeln in the regular season. We lost twice to them one time early in the season and the second game we knew we could of won so we had some unfinished business with them an open tab and that’s how we played against them.
You lost the semi-final series to Vechta 3-1. You allowed 77 points per game in the regular season, but gave up 91 points in the 4 game series. Was all that firepower to much to handle in this series?
Vechta is a great team and we have to give those guys a lot of credit. They are a close group who defend their butts off and offense and they share the ball. It was a great matchup since both teams had Respect for another. The games were close and we gave the fans and the league a great semi finale series I couldn’t be more proud
What was the secret to the success of PS Karlsruhe this season? Your teammate Orlando Parker stated this in an earlier interview with me. “Being on a team that no one believes in and surrounded by players that are considered underdogs is the perfect combination for success”. Do you feel that the mental side played a lot bigger role in the success than people may have noticed?
Yes I believe that as well like I mentioned earlier only the guys in our looker room knew what kind of caliber team we have not just as players but also as persons. We didn’t have any secrets and we just believed that we could have a great season and worked hard at it every day
When you look back at this season what will be that you will remember the most of this squad? Was this a team that all were like brothers?
Yea we were all like brothers. I will remember all the ups and downs we had together and also will how much of an underdog our whole team was. We were picked to move back down in pre season. Also I will remember everyone who was part of this special ride
What was your team highlight of the season? Possibly every playoff win against the RheinStars or the playoff win against Vechta?
My team highlight was being amongst the top 3 teams pretty much the whole season and reaching the playoffs as well of getting a to the semi-finals everyone the win against Vechta was great since it proved that we could beat those guys if we stick to our principles. Also the game vs Chemnitz when Orlando hit the game winning shot
Let´s talk about some of your teammates. How much of a joy was it being teammates with Orlando Parker. A guy who came from the Regionalliga and moved up each season. Was he like an ultimate teammate for you being that he is a guy that would cover your back at anytime on and off the court?
Yea Orlando is a great guy just like all my other teammate. He has so much experience since he’s been in the program for some time. We both played for the same college coach in Dan Hurley and playing for him means you got to have a high character but I have nothing but good things to say about Orlando. He is the ultimate teammate and competitor.
What kind of experience was it being teammates with Richard Williams. He has had success with German teams, but also hard times. What did you learn to appreciate most about his game and his leadership abilities?
Richi is a true vet and he’s been through it all and part of great success. Just how he comes in everyday and works is great to see. He is very vocal with his leadership and always thinks the game one step ahead and he’s also a great guy off the court
You have to tip your hat to head coach Michael Mai who is my pick for coach of the year. He obviously put together the right players, but what do you believe was his biggest strength that enabled PS Karlsruhe to have such an unforgettable season?
Coach mais biggest strength in my opinion is that he gives us a lot of responsibility and input throughout the year. If players see something on the court he wants to hear about it and incorporate it with his concepts. He believes that not him alone but the whole team should be included in decisions He shows us a way that works but it’s on us to follow he always says this your season as much as it mine so let’s have a great one together.
Let´s talk a little about your career. Last season was a season to forget as you were with Vechta and in the G-League with the Westchester Knicks. How tough was this season for you and what did you learn from it that will helped this season?
I just learned the professional European game and the professional American game. It’s such a big difference in both and being able to adapt to either gives me a big strength.
How big was your chip on your shoulder last season after your experience with Vechta. Do you believe some of that energy sparked your play this season?
I always have a chip on my shoulder when I play. My experience with Vechta was maybe a little miss understood I had a great time in Vechta. I just wanted to play. I’m still young and hungry
You got your feet wet in the G-League playing two games. What kind of experience was it playing with NBA guys and would the G-League be an option to see just how far you could go?
It was a great experience in the g league just being around an NBA organization It´s so much fun running into NBA players and working out with them is almost like a dream come true but I think I won’t go back to play there again. I missed Germany way to much.
Your really a very versatile forward that loves to fill up the stat sheet. To what NBA player would you best describe your game to?
That a hard question I never really thought about comparing my game to an NBA player but I heard my teammates say that I play similar to Joe Johnson
You were close to a few triple doubles at E Kentucky(NCAA). Do you feel like you could achieve that amazing stat down the road sometime?
Yes I believe so. I am a hard worker who loves to play the game. If I continue to work and take care of my body good things will happen
You were born in South Carolina, but lived in Germany for many years before going back to the states in 2008 where you were for 8 years. Seriously do you feel more German or American now with the various experiences that you have shared?
I decently feel more German now that I been home for a full year after living in the states for 8 years. I missed almost everything about Germany and couldn’t be happier to be back
How vital was it for your basketball development to have played at three different colleges with Rice Rhode Island and Eastern Kentucky? How do you feel are you a different player today having not been at one school for 4 years?
I think it helped me because at every college I played at I was playing for great coaches with a lot of knowledge. At URI it was the Hurley brothers who’s history speaks for themselves and at Rice it was Ben Braun and at EKU it was Dan Mchale. All these coach had so much wisdom which I picked at and used for my development the following year and as I finally got the chance to play my senior year. I combined my knowledge and put it to play
What is the next step for Jerelle Reischel? Is the NBA/G-League route still a theme or is the easyCredit BBL the next step now? What is your biggest ambition to further your career?
The next step for me is to continue to improve to get back in the gym and fine tune my game and work on the weaknesses I had this season. I’m not sure about to future but it won’t be in the g league.
You played your first NCAA season with Rice for Ben Braun and was teammates with Euroleague player Dylan Ennis. What memories did you have of your first NCAA season and were the possibilities to further develop your game a reason why you left?
Dylan is my guy. We still stay in touch. What I remember most was just going through the process of being a freshman together. We both were a little shell shocked at first but we grew over time and figured it out just sharing our freshman year in college gives us so many unforgettable moments together. The reason why I left was that I wanted to play and contribute much more to a team then I have. I got a lot of practice and working out in but never the true opportunity to display my hard work.
You then transferred to Rhode Island where you were three years and played two seasons. There you also had more of a minor role never averaging more than 5,6ppg. How was that experience and playing for Danny Hurley who recently took over at UConn. Were you able to get any positives out of the three years?
Yes I got a lot of positives out of playing for Dan Hurley just what it means to win and how important each little detail is in order to win. He gave me that edge and mental toughness because playing for him is very demanding.
Do you ever wonder where your path would have gone had you stayed at Rhode Island? Do you feel like anything would have changed with your role there had you remained?
Oh I don’t think my role would have changed much if I stayed at Rhode Island that’s why I decided to go. I knew I was talented and I worked hard enough to help a team more than I have at URI but those times and lessions I learned there will never be forgotten. Rhode Island will forever have a special place in my heart
You played 30 games averaging 17.9ppg, 6.8rpg, 3.2apg, 1.7spg, FGP: 53.4%, 3PT: 38.1%, FT: 78.4%. How do you feel did your game grow as a senior? What did you learn about your game that season that you really didn´t know that you had?
My game as a senior grew tremendously I think I learned that I could actually play and compete with some of the best players in the country
You had many massive games at E Kentucky, but I can imagine your 37 point explosion in the 110-97 win against Longwood was one of your most memorable games?
Yes it defiantly was one of the most memorable games not only because it was my college career high but because we won and my mother came from Germany to watch me play.
You played your senior year at E Kentucky for head coach Dan Mchale. How did he give you the last important grooming and preparation for a professional career?
Dan Mchale recruited me out of high school so he kind of knew my game already but he just gave me the keys and responsibility to become one of his leaders on the team. In college I was never in that position therefore I had to make big adjustments since my role was a completely different one
Who won a one on one in practice you or Ja´mill Powell?
I would win that one on one
Who was the toughest player that you ever battled on the court in the NCAA that is in the NBA now ?
The toughest player I ever battled with was Kyrie Irving
How does a normal summer day workout plan look like for you on and off the court?
A summer day workout would look like this. I wake up around 9 am go to the gym at 10 do a individual workout come back home eat relax watch tv then go back to the gym and lift come back home eat and then hit the gym again to get up a lot of shots up and that’s everyday
If you had to construct your very own NBA Rushmore which 4 heads would you pick?
That’s a tough question but I would god with Kobe LeBron Jordan James Harden and Shaq.
What is your personal opinion about the never ending debate of who is the greatest of all-time, Lebron James or Michael Jordan?
They both have different games and played in a different era but personally think it’s Jordan
Deandre Ayton seems lie he could be the #1 NBA draft pick in 2018. But having been in Europe this season you must of seen some highlights of Real Madrid´s 19 year old stand out Luca Doncic who belonged to the best players in the Euroleague. Should a guy like that be the automatic #1 pick just from sheer experience and talent?
They both are great player.s I think an organization couldn’t go wrong picking either one but Doncic does have the experience as a professional and that’s something you can´t teach
What was the last movie that you saw? Let me guess Black Panther?
The last movie that I saw was lone survivor that was a movie I watched right before the playoffs to get ready for a battle
Thanks Jarelle for the chat.