Quadir Welton is a 23 year old 203cm forward from Philadelphia that is playing his second professional season and first with SSV Lokomotive Bernau (Germany-ProB). Last season as a rookie he played with Centro Deportivo Rivadavia de Mendoza (Argentina-TNA) playing 43 games averaging 13.3ppg, Reb-5 (9.6rpg), 1.9apg, 1.4spg, FGP: 52.9%, FT: 44.8%.He began his basketball career at Math Civics and Sciences Charter High School. He played at St.Peter’s (NCAA) from 2013-2017 playing a total of 129 NCAA games and as a senior played 35 games averaging 12.0ppg, 8.2rpg, 2.1apg, FGP: 46.7%, FT: 58.2%. He spoke to germanhoops.com about basketball before begin of the playoffs.
Quadir thanks for talking to germanhoops.com Congrats on a good season with Lok Bernau. What kind of an experience has it been for you playing your second professional season in Germany?
This season for me has been a great experience for me on and off the court. My teammates are great guys and made the transition very easy for me coming to the team after they already played 6 games especially since I was the only American. I also like living out here in Berlin there is a lot of fun things to do and a lot of history here to see and good food haha.
The team was a bit up and down when you came in, but strolled into the playoffs with a positive 9 game winning streak. What were the main reasons for the club going on this roll?
I think once we found our rhythm and the guys figured out how I played and I figured out how they played we clicked fast and I fit right in the system of how our coach wants us to play. Also everybody is unselfish and doesn’t care about scoring so that helps our offensive game and makes it easier for us to play good defense and now we found out how we want to play and we just are rolling right now.
How much credit is seriously due for the success when one has to factor in that guys are moving in and out of lineups on account of the many BBL license players.
I think there should be a lot of credit due because we had to get used to not having a full team every game and relying on others to step up at certain times and we showed we could do that by winning games with only 6-7 players. I think it showed how tough and how much talent we have on our ball club and I want to give my teammates and coaches a lot of credit for that.
What kind of experience has it been for you being able to practice and play with these very talented young German players. How do you feel did your game profit most from having these players around?
The experience was great. These young guys are really talented and have bright futures ahead of them and from me playing against them I think it benefited both of us because we challenge each other everyday in practice and it only makes me and them better as players and as teammates.
You start the Pro B playoffs against ratiopharm Ulm farm team Orange Academy and then the Fraport Skyliners farm team could be awaiting you. It could be a fest of young German talent for the next two rounds. How exciting is this for you to try to see if Lok Bernau is possibly the best farm team in the Pro B?
It’s extremely exciting one because it’s the start of the playoffs and two because I know they will bring their A game just like we will. I can’t wait to get on the court and see us go against this other young team it should be a fun game for both teams and we will soon be able to see who is the better farm team.
Let’s talk about your teammates. You played 5 regular season games with Mo Wagner’s brother Franz. Is he the real deal? How good is he and how have you seen him develop this season?
Yes Franz is the real deal. He is very talented and has a high basketball IQ at so young of an age and he is also a very good shooter and knows how to finish around the rim. I only played 5 games with him and practiced with him a couple times so I can’t say I really seen him develop but I can say when me and him play together we play well and have a good connection on the court.
Another guard who has made big strides is Jonas Mattisek who has gotten better BBL minutes this season. How good is the Lok Bernau offense when he is on board?
When we have Jonas we are a better team no doubt. He brings that energy and defense to our team when he plays and when he gets it going from 3 it’s hard to guard us.
The club has many young Germans, then there is you as the lone import and then there are the two ex BBL veterans Nicolai Simon and Robert Kulawick. How important has it been having this balance on the team for success?
I think our team balances out well with Nico and Kula being our veterans with a young team I think you always need some veterans who can guide and help the team in certain situations and also bring some leadership.
Let’s talk about your game. You’re a 203cm forward. If you had to compare your game to an NBA player who would best fit the description?
I would say I play like an old school power forward so probably my uncle Rasheed Wallace or Chris Webber.
How influential has a guy like Rasheed Wallace been for you growing up as a basketball player? Are there any special tips he gave you that you feel really helped your game?
My uncle has been a big influence on my life growing up and seeing him going to the NBA inspired me to play basketball and get better. Yes he gave me a few tips that he said I should worry about when becoming a pro and showed me some moves and few ways to guard my defenders on defense. I also worked out with him for a little bit during the summer and that helped improve my game
You’re a player that can score and rebound the ball well. What other strengths does your game have?
Another strength some people may not know is my passing. I’m a really good passer and passer out of the post. Also I’m good at getting steals with my quick hands and long arms
You don’t shoot the three ball. Is this something that you will incorporate more into your game in the next years as you continue to develop at the professional level?
Yes I will work hard on my jump shot and incorporating the 3 in my game so I can become a better player and so I can play at the next level.
You are a consistent and efficient offensive player this season. Is this something that you were able to grow at St.Peter’s (NCAA)?
Yes I grew into that type of player my junior year of college when my coach gave me the chance to be a leader for my team and make decisions either passing or scoring the ball.
How much pride do you take on defense? You have proven in school and as a professional that you can be that reliable shot blocker. Is playing defense like second nature to you?
I take pride on defense and I want to become a better on ball defender so I can guard multiple positions and blocking shots was always a second nature to me and I think I can become a better shot blocker
What do you feel is a hidden strength in your game that is off the radar for many on the court to see?
My passing I think is off the radar. I don’t think people really notice it.
You began the season with the Worcester Wolves (United Kingdom-BBL) but left in October. What lessons did you learn from this short experience being in the UK?
Unfortunately I never actually got to play or go to the UK because of my visa not making it on time.
Last season you played with Centro Deportivo Rivadavia de Mendoza (Argentina-TNA) playing 43 games averaging 13.3ppg, Reb-5 (9.6rpg), 1.9apg, 1.4spg, FGP: 52.9%, FT: 44.8%. Usually Americans go there at the ending stages of their careers and one don’t see guys going there as rookies. What kind of experience was it playing and living in Argentina?
For my first season I think it was good. It’s a lot different from Germany but I feel like it prepared me for Germany also. Playing there was a lot of fun. The fans are really into the games and show a lot of support, and I also got to play against a lot of very good and older Americans and that made me step my game up. Living there was great because it was summer time so I had two summers for the year.
What was your wake up call to being a rookie in Argentina where you knew that you were very far away from home?
I didn’t have my wake up call there, but I had it my first week in Serbia where I first started. It was tough for me there especially being alone my first time out of the country but when I was in Argentina I had another American and it made it easier for me.
Sometimes Americans are the lone player on a team, but you had two Americans. How vital was it having a guy like rookie Casey Jones as your teammate? Did each other’s presence make the whole rookie experience a lot easier?
It played a big part, because me and Casey became really good friends and it helped us on the court and allowed us to play better. Also it made it easier living there because you have someone to talk to and do different activities when you get bored. We had a fun rookie year.
You played at St.Peter’s (NCAA) from 2013-2017 playing a 129 games. What were your fondest memories there playing in the NCAA?
One of my best memories in college was playing against some high major colleges such as Seton Hall, Notre Dame and Maryland. But I would have to say the best memory is when we won the CIT tournament and I got MVP to finish my last college game.
You had many memorable games at St Peter’s, but would the wins against Niagra and Fairfield rank as some of your best there?
Yes those games are some of my best but my best game to me was against Boston University where I scored 11 straight when we was down 11-0
You played three seasons together with Elias Desport. What were your fondest memories with him at St Peter’s and did you keep tabs on his play in Germany this season?
My fondest memories with Elias was my freshman and sophomore year where he helped me out a lot in the weight room and on the court and also in the summer time where we stayed together for offseason workouts and we did a lot of stuff working on our games and having fun going to NYC and other fun places around our college. Me and Elias still keep in contact and we both keep tabs on our season here in Germany and talk to each other about the games.
How did head coach John Dunne groom and prepare you best for a professional basketball career at St Peter’s (NCAA)?
He prepared me best by allowing me to lead my team my last two years and that allowed me to embrace a bigger role and improve my game on the offensive end. Coach Dunne also helped me with my emotions and telling me things I can do to become a be leader vocally and become a better leader vocally and by leading by example. Those are characteristics I think many professionals have’
Who won a one on one in practice you or Samuel Idowu?
In practice I would win the matchup but Sam is a very good player and got better every day from us battling against each other
Who was the toughest player that you battled in the NCAA that’s in the NBA now ?
Angel Delgado was the toughest matchup.
If you had to pick your personal favorite starting five of teammates over the years which players would you chose?
PG. Trevis Wyche SG. Desi Washington SF. Casey Jones PF. Marvin Dominique C. Myself
If you had to construct your very own NBA mount Rushmore which 4 heads would you pick?
Kevin Durant, Michael Jordan, Lebron James, Kobe Bryant
What is your personal opinion about the never ending debate of who is the greatest between Michael Jordan and Lebron James?
I think Michael Jordan is still greater than Lebron because of the titles. Lebron in the end of his career will probably have the better stats but if he doesn’t win it doesn’t mean nothing to me.
What was the last movie that you saw?
Thanks Quadir for the chat.