Orlando Parker is a 25 year old 203cm forward from Orlando, Florida that completed his fifth professional season and fourth in Germany and third with PS Karlsruhe averaging 13,7ppg and 6,3rpg while shooting 41,7% from outside. In the 2017-2018 season he averaged 13,2ppg and 5,7rpg. He started his basketball career with Wagner (NCAA) in 2010 playing a total of 118 NCAA games. As a senior he played 26 games averaging 6.7ppg, 6.7rpg, FGP: 44.7%, FT: 62.0%. In 2014 he turned professional with UL Eagles Limerick (Ireland-Premier League) playing 17 games averaging 19.9ppg, 8.6rpg, 1.1spg, 1.2bpg, FGP: 45.5%, 3PT: 42.4%, FT: 78.5%. In 2015-2016 he played with Baskets Vilsbiburg (Germany-Regionalliga) playing 26 games averaging 22.6ppg, 9.4rpg, 1.5apg, 1.3spg, 1.4bpg, FGP: 55.6%, 3PT: 33.8%, FT: 79.3%. He spoke to germanhoops.com after the 2018-2019 season.
Thanks Orlando for talking to germanhoops.com Where are you at the moment and how is basketball life treating you at the moment?
I’m currently still in Germany taking advantage of my time in Europe before I depart for the states soon.
It’s been a year since our last interview. Has basketball time flown by in this time for you as you are approaching your fifth professional season? ‘
Yes time is moving quickly it feels just like yesterday when I was just playing in 1st regio
It was another special season for PS Karlsruhe. How do you believe did the special basketball culture grow in the last season after it’s amazing Pro A debut in 2017?
I believe last seasons debut to the Pro A was huge for the club and recognition in the league. I knew coming into this season teams would challenge us and prepare for us like a top team in the league in which they did despite our slow start to the season.
Last season the club reached the Pro A semi-finals playing a hard fought 4 game series against eventual Pro A champion Rasta Vechta, but this season the club reached only the quarterfinals. Considering the expectations that the club had did the team underachieve?
I’m sure the club and the team were proud of making the playoffs. We faced probably the toughest amount of adversity in the league with key players being out all season long, starting off the season in last place in the standings on top of a coaching change. Despite those things we were still able to reach the playoffs so if anything I believe we overachieved
This season PS Karlsruhe was swept by top Pro A team Chemnitz. What is your summary to the PS Karlsruhe series? Do you feel like you could have done more as a team to have had more of a chance?
As I mentioned before we played the entire year under man but we still gave them a good run. Chemnitz is a great team that plays the game the right way which they proved all season long.
It came to down to defense. In the regular season the club allowed 79 points per game, but in the playoffs against Chemnitz 87 points. What made it so tough playing them in this series?
Chemnitz biggest strength in my opinion is their depth. They have a really deep bench that contributes in every way throughout the game, which allows them to constantly attack teams offensively and defensively
How tough was it the game to game scouting? You never really could key in on 1-3 players, because they were a club that really had 7-8 guys that could light up the score board in any given game?
Our job wasn’t to key in on just one guy because they don’t have a player that’s going to carry the team like most teams in the league. We focused more on our defensive principles
There was a great stretch in November, December and January where the team won 10 of 11 games. This was the best time of the season where the club was playing it’s best basketball. Did the team instill that ‘We are invincible feeling’?
Well we started off slow in the beginning due to the injuries and new players, so it just took us some time to get accustomed to each other and our tendencies. We just felt at that moment we were playing our best basketball and things started to click for us.
Please sum up the team season for the club. What were the team highlights of the season and what made it special playing for this team? Was the win against Heidelberg at the end of the season one of the biggest wins of the season?
This team was special because we battled adversity and overcame so much together. Although we didn’t reach our goal we accomplished something that most teams couldn’t. The win against Heidelberg was huge for us because that game clinched our spot in the playoffs.
Let’s talk about your teammates. How special was it playing with Davonte Lacy? You have played with many pure scorers in your career, but where did his scoring ability rank with all the guys that you have played with in your career?
Lacy is a special player with a unique ability to get his shot off at any given moment. With a knack for scoring he was vital for us in big moments late in the game. I’ve played with a lot of great scorers but he’s definitely up there with the best.
How did you see the development of Kahron Ross? He had an up and down rookie season. How did his game improve form the first day of training camp to game three against Chemnitz?
Kahron took on a very big challenge this year at the PG position. He’s improved so much with his decision making and ability to blow by his defenders with his speed and quickness. He’s always had that gift but it’s improved since the preseason.’
German Filmore Beck is a bonafide veteran that can when he wants to shoot out the lights. Is there anything that you could soak up from his game that was able to help you in parts of your game?
I believe Fil doesn’t get enough credit for what he’s capable of doing. This guy can not only shot but he can create his shot better than anyone I’ve seen in the league. He has a smooth finesse touch to his game when he’s finishing around the rim that I always enjoy to watch and implement to my own.
You had many German players on the team like Pluskota, Nyama and Johnson. Of these three which player do you feel made the biggest stride?
Mo has been injured this year but DJ and Roland made huge impacts for the team. DJ is a guy that every team needs to have on their roster. With his tenacity and attention to detail he’s a vocal leader that impacts the game. He has the ability to play and defend multiple positions which is important for a teams success. Roland has so much upside and I believe he’s now starting to realize what he can do with it. With his athleticism and ability to score when needed, really helped our team a lot as well.
Let’s talk about your game. You had a very productive sophomore campaign with PS Karlsruhe averaging 13,7ppg, 6,3rpg and shot over 40% from outside for the second consecutive season in the Pro A. You seem to be getting better with age. What is the secret to your success?
I wish there was a secret but every player already knows that it comes down to hard work. The off-seasons are huge for me and my development. Each year I try to add something new to my game and overall appearance and this year I added a post game and slashing ability to become more of a threat aside from the 3pt line.
How content were you with your game this season? What made the Pro A level easier for you in your second season?
It’s like taking a test you already know the answers to with added bonus questions. Entering this year I already knew the league, the players, the matchups, the team styles of play, the gym atmospheres, the refs etc. So with that knowledge it made it easier for me this second time around.
You improved your stats tremendously, but also gained 5 minutes more. What were your personal goals before the season and did you fulfill them?
Every players dream is to probably play the entire game but it’s just physical not realistic at this level. So playing those 5 extra minutes gave me more time do more on the court. My main personal goal before the season was mainly to prove I belong and I believe this year I did that.
In our last interview you stated ‘I’m never content with anything in life. I believe there is so much room for improvement on my game and I can get better. My minutes don’t bother me as much, I love showing people what I can do in the amount of minutes I receive’. How content were you with your efficiency this season with the minutes that you got?
I felt pretty good on how well I played with the minutes I received this year
You shot 40% from outside for the second season in a row. You have stated that you put in a lot of work in the summers. What does a player like you do now to become an even better shooter?
Well as a shooter I believe in repetition, repeating the same shot in different rhythms and positions on the court. So there are still many ways I can work on becoming a better shooter.
You are a hard nosed player that takes a lot of pride in defending. In your last interview you stated ‘I consider myself a versatile defender who can guard 1-5. There is room for improvement and I can get better but for the most part I think I’m doing fine defensively at this level’. Your also a guy that doesn’t believe in defensive stats. How do you feel did you grow as a defender in your second season in the Pro A?
Defense comes down to effort. There are many nights when shots aren’t going to fall but defense will always be there. So there is still much room for improvement on the defensive end. I enjoy being the help side defender the most because I find it very exciting challenging shots at the rim
You had two massive games scoring 37 points and 33 points in wins over Rostock and Baunach. Was the 37 point game your most memorable?
Those are two very memorable games offensively but I really enjoyed the game against Tubingen when I shoot 7/8 from 3pt and finished with 9 offensive rebounds.
Who was the toughest player that you battled in the Pro A this season?
One of the guys that I love to compete against is Dan Oppland. He’s a tenacious player that I still can’t seem to figure out. I also like matching up against Jermaine Bucknor and Domink Sphor’
What is the next step for you? You have played most of your career in Germany. Are you content with being a very good Pro A player or is the BBL a realistic goal for you?
I’m never content with anything in life, but one of my favorite phrases to live by is ‘You can’t rush greatness’ so my time will come for the BBL.’
If you had to pick your personal favorite starting five of teammates over the years which players would you chose?
This tough but I love all my guys haha
What is your personal opinion about the never ending debate of who is the greatest between Michael Jordan and Lebron James?
What is your early opinion where Luka Doncic will end one day in the NBA? Could he be one of the greatest Europeans that ever played in the NBA when all is said and done?
He will definitely be in the top
What was the last movie that you saw?
Thanks Orlando for the chat.