Josh Montgomery Is Still Waiting For That Overseas Experience As COVID-19 Put A Momentary Halt To It

Josh Montgomery s a 29 year old 196cm forward from Georgia that is currently playing for GIE Maile Matrix (UBA. He turned professional in 2013 and played semi-pro ball in the States for teams like the Atlanta Show (NABL), Middle Georgia Pitts (ABA), Georgia Kingz (MLBA),Georgia Gwizzlies (ABA) and GIE Maile Matrix (UBA). He played at Savannah State University (NCAA) from 2010-2014 playing a total of 94 NCAA games and averaged double figures in scoring as a freshman averaging 10.3ppg, 5.5rpg, 1.1spg, FGP: 41.2%, 3PT: 31.6%, FT: 73.2% and as a senior averaged 8.7ppg, 5.0rpg, 1.0spg, FGP: 52.8%, 3PT: 25.4%, FT: 70.8%. Last summer he spoke to about his basketball career.

Josh thanks for talking to Where are you and how has your summer been despite the COVID-19 having affected the world

No problem and I am here in Atlanta, Ga. My summer has been great, although I missed the AEBL. Even though I missed this ProAm, I was able to spend more time with my brothers and a few friends.

How did you experience the whole COVID-19 crisis at home in the States? How tough was it finding a way to stay in shape and be able to work on your basketball skills?

I was working remotely already when it got really big. Initially it was tough but then I got creative and worked out at the house or on my goal outside

How do you feel did you get stronger as a man during Covid-19 that has made you better as a person?

I feel great, I used this time to not only strengthen my body but also my mind as well. Building up my mind allowed me to become more disciplined in my work ethic.

I have interviewed many many guys with large chips on their shoulders, but I believe you must have the biggest chip? How can a guy with your NCAA experience averaging 10,0ppg and 8,0ppg in two seasons take you 6 years to land in Europe and then sign with an Oberliga team? For me it’s hard to believe that you didn’t get a job a lot sooner?

So Savannah State was an amazing experience and experience was a word I constantly heard once I graduated school. Almost every team said I did not have the experience needed to play. That stung but I kept believing that, in God’s time, everything will happen when it needed to!

Your ex teammate Louis Arnold put up the same kind of stats you did, but has played professional since leaving school and carved a nice career in South America. Is this a good example that there are simply too many good players on earth and not enough teams?

It may be that, I have no clue! I know there is tremendous talent out there. Right now I’m focusing on TLG, this championship, and performing at a high level so I can continue playing

After finishing at Savannah State University (NCAA) you didn’t turn pro until 2016 with the Atlanta Show (NABL). Were you undecided about turning pro and weren’t there any agents interested in representing you?

After taking a year to graduate, that left a hole in my resume. A few teams and agencies saw that as HUGE red flag. I was still in shape and ready to play but that deterred them from what I was told. My degree was a must, couldn’t pass that up

You have signed your first professional contract in Germany with the Troisdorfer Leichtathletik Gemeinschaft (Germany-Oberliga). How good of a feeling is it beginning your pro career overseas at age 29?

I am elated, excited, ecstatic, and any other ‘e-word’ you can find! It’s been a long time coming. They say good things come to those who wait, and boy have I waited.

You will be playing in Germany’s 6th division called Oberliga. This is a league that you will dominate in. If you don’t tell me after the season that you were a man among kids, then I’ll be dumfounded. With what kind of mindset are you going in? I can imagine to put up the best possible stats in combination with winning.

Definitely a balance of what you stated. I plan to dominate with my teammates! Averaging 50 points and losing is not a good recipe, I’ve always been one that prioritizes winning. Winners win, no matter the cost.

How excited will you be playing with A’Daeron Duncan a guy like you who played in the UBL and ABA? You guys could become the most potent American duo the Oberliga ever saw.

I really look forward to play with him and all of my new teammates. I know the hunger is there and the drive is there! So we are going to work hard and get it done.

Let’s talk about your game. You’re a 196cm forward that can do a bit of everything. If you had to compare your game to an NBA player, who would best fit the description?

A player that best fits my game, well is a tough one. I feel like I can do whatever the team needs me to do, so I’ll say Jimmy Butler.

Talk a bit about your strengths on the court. What do you feel is your biggest asset on the court?

My strengths are I am very versatile and I play hard on both sides of the ball. My biggest asset, I believe, is that I do not quit. Hustle and hard work until the clock hits all zeroes.

How do you feel have you developed further as a player since 2014 when you finished at Savannah State University ? How do you feel did the semi-pro leagues in the States help you get better?

My game has changed a ton from my days in Savannah. I was utilized as a stretch 4, but now I am a 2/3/1. The ball is in my hands more and I have become more guard oriented. The leagues I’ve played in allowed me to find my rhythm and pace. They gave me an opportunity to showcase my skills and polish my game.

On what things are you working on this summer to improve your game so that you will be in the best situation to show your best game?

My ball handling, interior finishes, and my building up my body were my objectives this summer. These things will open a lot of opportunities to show my growth.

From 2016-2020 you played for various teams in various leagues like the Atlanta Show (NABL)
Middle Georgia Pitts (ABA), Georgia Kingz (MLBA), Georgia Gwizzlies (ABA) and GIE Maile Matrix (UBA). What kind of experience was this. What do you feel was the most positive thing that you got out of those years?

The experience was great, I love basketball. Being able to build friendships and be a unit is always amazing. Brotherhoods are formed and we played some great basketball.

I imagine you were working a full-time job and playing ball. What were you doing during the day and how difficult was it at times shuffling work and working out and trying to get better during the evenings?

If anyone says working out around a full-time job is easy, call them Pinocchio. It was rough to find a work/life balance. 6am workouts, work from 9-6pm, workouts following work. It had to be done, getting better is my job too. Discipline and focus is all it took.

You played against so many great basketball teams in the NCAA: Do you have a memory of playing against one school where there was so much talent? I can remember in your second season where you played Georgetown.

Georgetown was cool but Indiana was a tough team. Oladipo and Zeller were a handful. Oh yeah, Kansas State was a close second.

How did head coach Horace Broadnax groom and prepare you best for a professional basketball career?

HRB prepared me for a lot things in life, let alone basketball. He taught life lessons through basketball. Preparing properly is key, hope is not a good strategy, play hard and be tenacious! That’s just the tip of the iceberg and I’m extremely grateful for him.

Who won a one on one in practice you or Louis Arnold?

Honestly, I can’t recall. Arny, was like my big brother, he did a lot of teaching and we hardly played any ones. He showed me a lot.

Who was the toughest player that you ever played against that was in the NBA?

The toughest player I personally had to guard was Tyreke Evans. I played 17U at 15 and we met them in the Wallace Prather AAU Tournament. He played with Team Final and lit us up. Anything he wanted, threes from the parking lot, lay ups, assists, dunks. Yeah, Tyreke was a problem.

Please name your 5 best teammates of all-time?

That’s tough but Cedric Smith, Jyles Smith, Darnel Jones, Antoine Hall, and Avery Stewart. No particular order but man I love all my teammates!

Please list your NBA Mount Rushmore of players past or present

Kobe, Mike, Shaq, and Kareem

What is your personal opinion of the neverending debate between who is the best between Michael Jordan and Lebron James?

Mike hands down. Respect LeBron’s game, I like Mike though.

What was the last movie that you saw?

The last movie that I saw was Tenet.

Thanks Josh for the chat.

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