Pharroh Gordon is a 23 year old 198cm forward from Manchester, England that split the season with TKS 49ers RSV Eintracht Stahnsdorf (Germany-ProB) playing 6 games averaging 5.7ppg, 2.3rpg, 2.2apg, 1.2spg, 2FGP: 42.1%, 3FGP: 23.8%, FT: 50.0%, and in Jan.’20 moved to Cheshire Phoenix (BBL) where he is currently averaging 3,5ppg, 6,3rpg and 3,0apg. He began his basketball career with the Manchester Magic. He then spent five years in the states as he played with St.Rose, NY (NCAA2) from 2014-2017 amassing 49 games and then moved to William Jewell (NCAA2) where he played 29 games as a junior averaging 14.8ppg, 10.6rpg, 2.8apg, 1.8spg, FGP: 58.1%, 3PT: 41.5%, FT: 74.0% and in his senior year at William Jewell (NCAA2) played 20 games averaging 14.7ppg, 7.2rpg, 3.2apg, 1.1spg, FGP: 46.5%, 3PT: 30.3%, FT: 65.3%. He gave germanhoops.com an interview during his time in Germany.
Pharroh thanks for talking to germanhoops.com. You have 6 siblings. What were the main advantages growing up and now as an adult having so many brothers and sisters?
You learn how to share, you learn how to teach and how to be taught new things. Yes really just a great thing having people you know you can rely on.
Congrats on signing your first professional basketball career in Germany with RSV Eintracht Stahnsdorf (Germany-ProB). What were the main reasons for starting your career in Germany and not in England?
I was playing at an almost professional level in England from around 16 to 18, so I felt I should see what other places have to offer. I also love travelling and exploring new places.
RSV Eintracht Stahnsdorf (Germany-ProB) is very high on your abilities. You will be teammates with many young talented German kids. What was so appealing about the organization RSV Eintracht Stahnsdorf (Germany-ProB) that made you want to go there?
Really the coach was what really swung me. He didn’t sugar coat anything, he made it clear what he wanted from me and how we could help each other moving forward.
What do you in general about the country Germany and basketball? Did you talk with your youth national team teammate Jules Akodo about Germany? He played a few years in the Fraport Skyliners organization.
I didn’t actually, when I moved to America for college I didn’t really have anyone to talk to about that so I figured I would be okay this time too. That’s not to say Jules wouldn’t be willing to help me out, he’s a good guy. I have been to Germany a couple times before though, so I wasn’t too uncomfortable.
In 2014 you played at the well known Albert Schweitzer Tournament in Germany (Unofficial World Championships U18) averaging 12.5ppg, 4.3rpg, 2.0apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 56.9%, 3PT: 41.7%, FT: 58.3%. What memories do you of this time where you got an early introduction to Germany and German basketball?
That was a fun trip, we played pretty well if I remember right. We lost to Serbia by 2 or 4 in the second game of the tournament that really hurt us. Overall it was eye opening as to the level of talent there is in Europe. I hadn’t played in an international tournament of that calibre before that one.
Let’s talk about your game. You’re a 198cm forward that is a very versatile player. If you had to compare your game to an NBA player who would best fit the description?
I think maybe a less athletic Kawhi haha. I’m a good defender, I like to push the ball off rebounds, and I have a decent stroke from outside. Finishing too, I’m alright at that.
You spent 5 years in the States playing 98 NCAA 2 games for St Rose and William Jewel. How do you feel are you a different player now then when you first landed in America?
I’m a lot more mature, a lot more sure of myself. Back then I would look for validation from my coaches, and I’d overthink things if I didn’t get it. Now I know what I need to do and what my standards are for myself. My IQ is a lot higher too.
You’re a guy that can do a lot on the court. You can score, rebound and pass the ball well lifting any team’s offense. What other strengths do you have on the offensive end that will help RSV Eintracht Stahnsdorf (Germany-ProB) this season be successful?
My IQ means I know how to make scoring easier for other guys. I know where to set certain screens, when there will be opportunities for slips, those kind of things. I know when it’s my time to attack, and when the best option is just to swing the ball to generate some mo
vement. Not all of these things show up on the box score but they help.
You’re a physical player and can guard many positions. What do you feel is your biggest strength on the defensive end?
Again, my IQ. I don’t foul a lot because I know where I should position myself, and how to disrupt without fouling. Obviously I’m not perfect and still have a lot to improve on though.
You’re a player that can fill the stat sheet with ease, but what do you feel is a hidden strength in your game that doesn’t always get noticed when your on the court?
I think people underestimate my guard play. They see the points and the rebounds and think I’m strictly a wing/forward, but I played point guard for several years growing up, so I think I can handle some responsibility in that area too.
On what parts of your game have you been focusing most on during the summer so you will best prepared for your rookie season in Germany?
I’ve really focused on my mental strength. This season isn’t going to be like college or high school where you can really lean on others when things go wrong. I have to be able to maintain a level of mental consistency that allows me to operate even when I’m feeling frustrated or angry. I think that has held me back in the past. In terms of physical skills, I’ve been getting a lot of shots to readjust to the deeper 3 point line, and ball handling off of screens etc.
You began your career with the Manchester Magic. What memories do you have of this time. What were some of the early benefits at your game got being able to play in this organization?
They really pushed you to achieve. I know that nowadays it’s more about giving your best and taking part, but back then if we didn’t win something was wrong. They taught me how to work hard, how to lead, and how to be coachable. Also the fact that they really push for development, with their younger teams playing up, and allowing junior players into the men’s team was really good for me.
You played at ST Rose (NCAA2) from 2014-2017. You had one solid season, but two other seasons that were difficult. What memories do you have of these three years and what positives did you get out of it?
Well my first year I redshirted, so that one was a bit different, but my third year was hard for me. But, I learned a lot, both about the basketball world and about myself, and if I could go back I wouldn’t change it. I met a lot of good people, and I think I needed that hard time to push me towards bigger and better.
You finished at William Jewell (NCAA2) where your game exploded averaging 14.8ppg, 10.6rpg, 2.8apg, 1.8spg, FGP: 58.1%, 3PT: 41.5%, FT: 74.0% as a junior and 14.7ppg, 7.2rpg, 3.2apg, 1.1spg, FGP: 46.5%, 3PT: 30.3%, FT: 65.3% as a senior. How did your game develop in this time and what did you learn about your game that helped you be successful?
I became better all over the floor, to be honest. I wasn’t happy with my senior season, although I felt I was playing better overall than I did the year before. I learned more about myself as a player and my confidence jumped up, which really helped me.
What memories do you have of your 45/12 explosion against Lewis? You shot 14/17 on the night. Was this the typical example of you be
ing in the zone?
I was locked in, but I wasn’t playing the perfect game. I think I started around 1/4 or 5, but then I started getting into the groove. Our leading scorer was out that game so I knew I needed to pick it up a bit, and I knew from the scouting report that they would struggle to guard me, so it wasn’t too difficult.
You had many great games at William Jewel, but where do you rank your 23 points, 13 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals game in the win over S Indiana?
That was a great win, I think everyone played well that night, and my family had come to see me for the first time since I had been in America, so it was special.
How did head coach Larry Holley groom and prepare you best for a professional basketball career at William Jewel?
It was more off the court than on. He is the perfect example of how to carry yourself in a respectable manner, and although we disagreed on some things, I know he always had my best interests at heart. He also reminded me that being yourself is better than conforming to how someone else wants you to behave.
Who won a one on one in practice you or Eysan Wiley?
I bust his ass daily hahah. Eysan is one of my favorite teammates because he, unlike many people, really pushed me to get better. He’s going to have a great career.
Who was the toughest opponent that you played in the NCAA 2 that is in the NBA or in Europe now?
I’d say probably Dante Gittens, from Franklin Pierce. I’m not sure he was the toughest guy I ever played against, but I know he’s a pro now which not all of the other guys are.
Please list your five best teammates of all-time?
Garrett Skipworth, Clark Minnifield, Patrick Whelan, Aaron Menzies, Kingsley Nwagboso, Joe Swindells and Jamaal Greenwood. I know that’s 7 but I couldn’t leave any of them out.
Please name your personal own NBA Rushmore. Which four heads would you pick past or present for your list?
MJ, Lebron, Kobe and Magic
What is your personal opinion of the never ending debate of who is the greatest of all-time Michael Jordan or Lebron James?
I’m not even going to get involved in this one, I might get into trouble.
What was the last movie that you saw?
The newest Spider-Man, I took my brother when it came out.
Thanks Pharroh for the chat.