Ron Howard is an ex player that spent many years overseas and since retiring has focused his energy on helping unknown players get exposure by organizing games and in many cases helping them find professional jobs. He founded Howard Hoops in 2013 where he brought numerous players overseas to help them find jobs and since 2018 has started the Howard Hoops academy where he helps train unknown players and help find basketball jobs. He also has started the Howard Hoops Academy and recently had some German kids there for a month working on their games. One of those was Max Montag. Germanhoops.com spoke with the young
German about basketball recently.
Max thanks for talking to germanhoopscom. Where are you at the moment and how is life going at the moment?
Hey Miles thank you for the opportunity to finally talk to you. I’m still in Minnesota right now for a few days before I go back to Germany. Life is great at the Moment, big opportunities are opening up for me.
You have been in Minnesota for some weeks and training with Howard Hoops CEO Ronald Howard. Talk a little about yourself and your background and how you got involved with basketball?
I’m Max, 19 years old. I am living next to the Basketball city Hagen in Germany with my sister, mum and dad. The first time really getting involved with Basketball must’ve been the 2011 season of the Miami Heat. LeBron James and Dwyane Wade made me fall in Love with the game.
I remember seeing you at various Howard Hoops summer tours in the last years helping give support. How did the contact come to Ron?
That’s right and that’s how the contact started with Ron. I’ve known him since forever now and I reached out to him to come to a practice in Offenbach. He is not only a great coach but he’s like family for me now!
What made the Howard Hoops summer tour so fascinating to you that made you want to get involved with Ronald Howard and his basketball?
First of all the fact that he is giving guys an opportunity to have a better life. I know a lot of guys from the USA/Europe who never got an opportunity like this. People like Ron, who take this serious and want to help you are a true blessing for the game of basketball. After the first workout with him and while talking to him I know he was serious so I took the chance.
You have been training with Ronald Howard in Minnesota. What is your goal in this program and as a basketball player?
My Goal is to get better in this time and improve my weaknesses. There is a big difference week 1 to now. To be able to live of doing what I love and make it to the League.
I have heard that when you train with Ronald Howard, it’s not the normal kind of training many guys would experience. Ronald Howard is a very special trainer. Talk a little about what kind of training you do and how he isn’t like other trainers, but very much different?
We do a lot of individual work like Ballhandling, Shooting, Footwork but also Strength and Conditioning. The biggest difference to other coaches is that he cares about the smallest details, which have the most impact in the game later.
How vital has Ron been with his training for your basketball game? What do you feel has been the most important thing that he has given you that has helped your game the most?
In 2016 I was in California for 2 weeks to train with him and in this little time it developed my game to another level. In this month Ron really helped me with my skill and getting faster, stronger but also with my mentality and adapting to the play style in the USA.
What has impressed you most about the person Ronald Howard? How important is his character and insane motivation for the game that allows for guys to buy into his philosophy?
Most impressive is definitely his work ethic and loving the game of basketball. He is training kids every day to give them an opportunity to play professional basketball in their life. The fact that he played professional for more than 10 years makes guys really listen to him because he knows what he is talking about and what it takes to play at a high level.
Talk a little about your game. To what NBA player would you compare your game to and what are you biggest strengths on the court?
I would compare my Game a little bit to Damian Lillard mixed with Klay Thompson. My biggest strength is definitely my basketball IQ, my flexibility to play and defend all positions, and my 3pt shooting. Plus I love to play defense and I look up to Rodney McGruder, Marcus Smart, Jae Crowder and Avery Bradley for their defense.
What area’s of your game have you been working most on with Ronald Howard to help improve you game?
It’s a mix of everything. If I have to pick I would say Ballhandling, Midrange game, Strength and Conditioning
What is your general opinion of what is the route for young German players. 10 years ago there were more going through the NCAA and now it seems like the way is developing in Germany. Are you a guy that would rather get established in Germany, or go to school in the states play ball and get an education?
Germany is establishing a solid youth program and is creating more opportunities for players to play at a high level with a young age. I’m undecided right now but going to college here to adapt to the playing style would help a lot to get to that next level. Being able to and reverse that trend back to going to college would be incredible. And being able to graduate is definitely one thing I will be talking about with my family when I come back.
What is your long term goal with basketball? Are you prepared to invest all in becoming a professional player or do you have other goals?
I’m all in to become a professional player! It doesn’t matter if it takes the route through college or Europe. I want to earn money with doing what I love. Ronald Howard inspired me to help young players after my career like he does. Having my own Basketball-training-academy would be great.
If you had to pick your own personal NBA Rushmore which 4 heads would you pick?
Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Damian Lillard, Dirk Nowitzki
What is your personal opinion of the never ending debate of who is the greatest of all-time Michael Jordan or Lebron James?
Let us end the debate: LeBron James is the greatest of all-time !
What was the last movie that you saw?
Thanks Max for the chat.