Anthony Brown is a 28 year old 199cm forward that was born in Bellflower, California. He is playing his 6th professional season and first with Boulogne-Levallois Metropolitans (France-Jeep ELITE ProA). He played his first full season in Europe last season splitting time with teams Limoges CSP Elite (France-Jeep ELITE ProA) playing 6 Eurocup games averaging 8.2ppg, 3.2rpg, 1.2apg, 2FGP: 52.6%, 3FGP: 42.9%; and played 10 French Jeep ELITE ProA games averaging 13.1ppg, 5.0rpg, 2.5apg, 2FGP: 53.7%, 3FGP: 46.3%, FT: 88.9%, in Dec.’19 moved to Montakit Fuenlabrada (Spain-ACB) playing 8 games: averaging 7.4ppg, 3.4rpg, 1.9apg, FGP: 47.4%, 3PT: 28.6%. He began his basketball career at Ocean View High School and then played at Stanford University (NCAA) playing 138 NCAA games and as a senior played 37 games averaging 14.8ppg, 6.9rpg, 2.5apg, FGP: 42.4%, 3PT: 44.1%, FT: 79.5%. In 2015 he was drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers (NBA,2rd (34). From 2015-2019 he played 41 NBA games with the Lakers, Pelicans, Magic and Timberwolves and alos played with G-league teams Los Angeles D-Fenders, Erie Bay Hawks, Iowa Wolves and Lakeland Magic. He spoke to germanhoops.comafter a 86-80 Eurocup win in Ulm.
Thanks Anthony for talking to germanhoops.com. Your just played a Eurocup game in Ulm, Germany. Is the whole travel thing in Europe easier and less hectic than what you experienced in the NBA and G-League?
Traveling in Europe isn’t on the same level as the NBA. In the NBA you always take charter flights. I would compare the travel in Europe to the G-League. It always depends what city you are in. Last season playing in Limoges, the travel was worse. But now living in Paris the travel has been smooth.
You were teammates with Ulm American Troy Caupain and John Petrucelli a few years ago with Lakeland. Do you have any friendly wagers going?
No we didn’t have any friendly wagers going, but it was really good to see them. I talk to both guys on a regular basis. When I played with the Lakeland Magic, it was one of the closest teams that I ever played with. I talk to John like 2-3 times a week and I talk to Troy 2-3 times a month. This was the first time that I had seen them since we played in the G-League one and a half years ago.
Congrats on the 86-80 win in Ulm. What steps did the team make in Ulm?
We didn’t play well in our first 2 Eurocup games. We didn’t start well in the first quarter in those 2 games, but in Ulm we finally did. We as a team don’t have much Eurocup experience. Winning this game was important. We are starting to know what we have to do to win. This win took some relief off our shoulders.
Before we get to your career, I have to ask you about how you experienced COVID-19 in 2020. What personally was the most challenging thing for you while having to stay fit as well as off the court things?
COVID-19 was tough at first, but I was lucky to have a little gym in L.A. I was allowed access in June and practiced there until August. I really needed that time. I didn’t have that in April/May. It was tough in that time. All I could do was have home work outs and run outside.
How do you feel did COVID-19 and everything you experienced the last months make you stronger as a man?
When you’re a professional player, you play 10-15 years and never stop. You have little time to kick it with family and friends. This was the first time since high school that I could spend a lot of time with family.
Congrats on signing with Boulogne-Levallois Metropolitans (France-Jeep ELITE Pro A). You have lived in cities like Los Angeles, close to San Francisco and New Orleans just to name a few, but what has it been like living in the massive historical city Paris? Was it a culture shock at first?
No there was no culture shock. Paris has been cool. Paris is pretty westernized and everyone pretty much speak English. I really enjoy the city. I feel like I’m back at home. Here I am able to be around people and I don’t feel like I’m in the middle of nowhere. I can always find what I need.
You played in the France Pro A last season with Limoges so you know what to expect. What can we expect from this team? It doesn’t have the big time players except for you. Will this team surprise people this season? It is off to a 3-0 record
Last season I think the team ended in 5th place. We were missing some key guys in Ulm like Rob Gray. I think that we have the chance to be a top 4 team. I think with the experience of last years team combined with a few more pieces, we will be able to compete until the end.
With Marei and Chicoko the club has to ex players from the German league BBL.Chicoko is off to a great start. Do you see Marei following who had a massive game in Ulm with 15/13 stats?
Assem is a beast. This is the first time that I have seen him play. I already had known about Chicoko. I think that with these 2 guys, we have a chance to have the best bigs on the court each night. If they can rebound and make consistent post shots, then I think that it will be hard to beat us. If you double them then we will have our shooters ready. We already have good chemistry.
A lot of times guys come from the NBA to Europe and sometimes guys go from Europe to the NBA. Your teammate David Michineau was drafted by the pelicans in 2016. How much potential does he still have at age 26?
David has a lot of potential. He has the right physical tools and is super athletic. He can get into the paint at will and make plays. Once he becomes a better shooter, he can get to the next level. He has a crazy bright future. If he doesn’t make the NBA then the Euroleague.
You had solid stats last season in France and Spain but this season have picked them up. Do you feel you will have the opportunity this season to have that major leader role?
Last season it was my first time in Europe and I jumped on the train coming in mid season. That was tough, but this season I was here from day 1 which has helped me be more vocal and help make more chemistry.
How would you like to keep developing as a player overseas? You showed last season that you can adapt to the style as you shot at a high clip from outside
I think that important for me will be to continue to make plays off the dribble in the paint. Overseas you have the defensive 3 seconds. The paint area is more clogged in Europe. I want to become a better player in tight spaces. In the NBA/G-League there is a lot more space. I also want to develop further into a better defender. I want to be a guy defending the other team’s best scorer.
Last season you played your first real season overseas with Limoges CSP Elite (France-Jeep ELITE ProA) playing 6 Eurocup games averaging 8.2ppg, 3.2rpg, 1.2apg, 2FGP: 52.6%, 3FGP: 42.9%;and played 10 French Jeep ELITE ProA games averaging 13.1ppg, 5.0rpg, 2.5apg, 2FGP: 53.7%, 3FGP: 46.3%, FT: 88.9%, in Dec.’19 moved to Montakit Fuenlabrada (Spain-Liga) playing 8 games averaging 7.4ppg, 3.4rpg, 1.9apg, FGP: 47.4%, 3PT: 28.6%. What was your wake up call to being overseas as a professional for the first time?
My wake up call was arriving in Limoges and taking my first trip around the whole city in like 8 minutes. Limoges was completely different to what I was used to in California where I have lived most of my life. Going to a smaller city was an adjustment.
You played in Europe’s best league ACB last season and was teammates with Earl Rowland. How beneficial was it for you to have that vet on your side?
I connected to EJ right away. We had some mutual friends from Los Angeles. I started to hang out with him. He helped me a lot adjusting to the high level in the ACB
You began the 2018-2019 season with famous team BC Partizan NiS Beograd (Serbia-KLS). What do you remember from this brief stay and why was your stay so short?
I remember the Partizan fans as being crazy and intense. I was signed by a previous coach. When I got there, he resigned. The new coach brought a player with him and had a different style. There was no room for me.
You finished the 2018-2019 season with the Lakeland Magic (NBA G League) playing 27 games averaging 12.9ppg, 5.4rpg, 2.3apg, 1.0spg, FGP: 47.0%, 3PT: 35.2%, FT: 81.1%. That team had some good scorers. How much of a challenge is it in general to stand out for the NBA when the team has so many good players?
I think that it’s tough on any team. It is tough to stand out on a losing team, because no one really knows who really contributed. I think that the NBA will notice that 13 or 14 point scorer on a winning team first before that 19 or 20 point scorer on a losing team. We really had it together on that team. Most G-League teams aren’t that together.
You played the 2017-2018 season primarily for the at Iowa Wolves (NBA G League) playing 45 games averaging 18.9ppg, 4.8rpg, 3.6apg, FGP: 49.0%, 3PT: 40.4%, FT: 79.7%, but you did play an NBA game for the Minnesota Timberwolves. How disappointing was it not getting more of an NBA run that season considering the G-League stats that you put up having 3 30 point games in November?
It was definitely disappointing not getting more of a look. That was my third year and I really felt like I was ready to make an impact. The opportunity just didn’t come and that’s life.
In the 2016-2017 season you split time with the New Orleans Pelicans (NBA) playing 9 games averaging 3.8ppg, 2.9rpg, played also at Erie Bay Hawks (D-League) playing 24 games averaging 20.3ppg, 5.4rpg, 3.1apg, 1.0spg, FGP: 46.6%, 3PT: 46.7%, FT: 80.8%, in Jan.’17 agreed terms with Orlando Magic (NBA) playing 2 games averaging 4.5ppg, 3.5rpg, 1.0apg. How do you remember this season? You had 2 NBA opportunities and put up strong stats in the D-League.
I moved around a lot that year. It was also the first time that I had lived outside of California. Overall it was a good year. I only wish that my NBA opportunity would have been longer. That was the first time in my career where I was the first offensive option. At Stanford I was the 3rd or 4th option. I learned to become a consistent scorer. It’s not easy to consistently score 20 points a game when everybody is watching you. I definitely became a better player and I improved the most that season.
The Pelicans were a young team, but also an organization somewhat in disarray. Do you feel like you got a fair chance to really showcase your skills?
I came to a team that wasn’t doing well and had injuries. I was with the Pelicans for like 2-3 weeks It was only my second professional season and wasn’t super experienced yet. I feel like if I would have had more of an opportunity that I could have made my stand. I am very thankful for the opportunity. This was also the first time that I saw Anthony Davis. He was the best teammate that I ever played with. The things he was doing on the court made no sense for a 7 footer.
As a rookie you played with the Los Angeles Lakers (NBA) playing 29 games averaging 4.0ppg, 2.4rpg. How long is one in aw until that whole unbelievable feeling wears down?
I wouldn’t say that I was in awe. I was so in the moment that I didn’t have a chance to be in awe, because your so focused on the team. The only chance to be in awe was when I was around Kobe.
Not many people can say that they were teammates with Kobe Bryant. Do you have your own special story about Kobe Bryant?
I just remember the last game before he got 60 points. We were joking in the locker room and asking him how much he would get. He just smiled and said I’m going to get 82 points. Everybody just looked up and said ok. Then he drops 60 points. It was amazing how he could get up 50 shots despite a sore body. His mind was at another level. His 60 points didn’t surprise me. I knew that he would leave it all out on the floor in his last game
You also played with another legend Ron Artest. How did you experience him as a teammate who had a legend like Kobe Bryant as a teammate also
Ron was cool. He was a valuable piece on the team. He gave a lot of valuable advice on defense. He always helped us. He was always talking about how you could frustrate your opponent and always be physical. He was a mastermind on defense.
You had games where you played 30 plus minutes and games where you played 4 -5 minutes. What is the fondest moment that you had on the court with the Lakers?
I don’t remember having to many fond moments mainly because we lost so many games. I guess one of my fondest moments was playing against New Orleans. I made a 4 point play, a couple of three’s and made the game winning stop at the end. I also remember my first start playing against Kevin Durant. That didn’t go to well.
You have seen a lot in the NBA, but what for you is the best example where you saw that the NBA will always be a business first?
We see the NBA being a business every day. We have guys out of the league who should be in the league. Then we have guys around like Dwight Howard and Carmelo Anthony where everyone said they couldn’t play. The biggest thing that I learned about the NBA being a business is that you can’t get to emotional. It is all not in your control. Teams can really like you, but then it can come down to money or how your contract is structured. When your growing up, you know nothing about this. All you think about is going to the NBA and it being simple.
Your still very young. Is the NBA a done deal or is the Euroleague your next challenge?
I wouldn’t say that the NBA is a done deal yet. The way everything is going now, I’m not thinking too heavily about the NBA. I want to play in the Euroleague. Everybody wants to be in the NBA, but the Euroleague would be great also. That league is rising each season.
You played at Stanford reaching a NCAA Sweet 16 and wining the NIT title. What kind of player did you become at that school?
My first year was also head coach Johnny Dawkins first year. We were still developing an identity. I was an OK player as a freshman. Then I got hurt and had to sit out a season. I had double hip surgery. In this time, I became an elite shooter. I had so much time to practice and improve as a shooter. Before that injury I was shooting at 34% and ever since have been at 40% or better. That injury made me more serious and I understood that basketball could be taken away from me at any time.
You played many many years with guys like Chasson Randle, Josh Huestis and Dwight Powell. Did the experiences that you all shared did you become like brothers?
Yes for sure we are like brothers. We were all super competitive and pushed each other to become better. It was always healthy competition. We all lived next door to each other and were in the gym all day. How could we not enjoy each other?
I always thought a guy like Travis Reid had major NBA potential but instead he ended up in Europe. Did you take him under your wing as a senior?
Yes I did take him under my wing even if he was a big man and I was a wing. We still talk to this day. I tried to help him. The biggest thing for him was his maturity. He was already pretty mature as a freshman. At least more mature than I was. He did a good job balancing being at a school with elite academics and playing in the Pac 12.. There was a lot of hype around him, but he handled it well. He has NBA potential.
How did head coach Johnny Dawkins groom and prepare you best for a professional basketball career?
He prepared me a lot. He played in the NBA and he was a big reason why I went to Stanford. He was a hands on developer working with us on the court and showing us everything we needed to know. He helped me grow a s a person and helped me become the man I am today.
Who won a one on one in practice you or Josh Owens?
JO was 2 years above me. We had some battles, but we didn’t play too much. He was a freak. He was the most athletic player that I ever witnessed. He did amazing things in College. It was NBA dunk athleticism.
Do you still follow Stanford basketball? If so do you see Oscar Da Silva being an NBA player one day?
Oscar could get drafted. He took a major step last year. He is on the radar. He is a big that can shoot which is important in 2020.
Who was the toughest player that you faced in the NCAA that went to the NBA?
There have been very many. 2 guys come vividly to mind. I remember freshman year playing Washington and Isaiah Thomas killing us. I also remember playing Washington State and Klay Thompson killing us. Klay’s play looked so effortless. He was easily the best player we played against that season. Derrick Williams also was good.
Please name your 5 best teammates of all-time?
That is too tough. I would leave out way too many guys.
Please construct your personal own NBA Mount Rushmore of past or present players?
Jordan, Lebron, Kobe, Magic
What is your opinion of the never ending debate of who is the greatest of all-time Michael Jordan or Lebron James? And why isn’t Kobe mentioned more?
Kobe should be in the conversation. How can you keep Kobe out. It is neck in neck. You can’t go wrong with anyone. It really depends on your preference.
What was the last movie that you saw?
Money Heist. It’s a great show
Thanks Anthony for the chat.