Ethan Alvano (185-G, college: CSUSM) is a 185cm guard from Corona, California playing his first season in Europe with the Eisbaeren Bremerhaven in Germany and third season as a professional. He has previous professional experience with San Miguel Beermen (Philippines-PBA): ASEAN League) playing 28 games averaging 6.8ppg, 4.0rpg, 5.9apg, FGP: 45.5%, 3PT: 25.3%, FT: 60.0% and also played with Hitech Bangkok City (Thailand-TBL) playing 6 games averaging 19.8ppg, 6.3rpg, 4.8apg, Steals-2 (3.3spg), FGP: 39.1%, 3PT: 33.3%, FT-1 (82.5%). He began his basketball career with Corona High School averaging 23.2ppg, 3.7rpg, 5.8apg, 3.9spg. He then played at Eastern Michigan (NCAA) for two years playing 49 NCAA games. He then moved to California State University San Marcos averaging 18.3ppg, 3.7rpg, 5.7apg, 2.2spg, FGP: 50.0%, 3PT: 42.3%, FT: 75.0% and as a senior averaged 20.5ppg, 3.7rpg, 5.9apg, 2.6spg, FGP: 44.8%, 3PT: 37.1%, FT: 82.3%. He spoke to germanhoops.com about his basketball career.
Ethan thanks for talking to germanhoops.com. Your about to become a dad. Is this the greatest moment in your career?
I definitely believe this is the greatest moment not only in my career but my life. This is something that is beyond basketball, I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to be a father and I’m excited for it. It definitely will be the greatest moment of my life when my daughter is born.
Before we talk about basketball, I have to ask you about how you experienced COVID. You were in Thailand at the time. What was the most challenge you had during this time on and off the court?
Yea I was in Thailand when the pandemic hit and there was a bunch of challenges but I’d say the most was simply just being shut down, no basketball. we couldn’t get on the court, no workouts, etc but off the court I’d say it was a challenge finding a routine that still allowed myself to be productive. with no basketball I had to adjust.
With everything that you experienced off the court during COVID, how do you feel did it help you become stronger as a man?
I think covid helped me a lot in a sense it made me sit back and appreciate more. Appreciate little things we take for granted like spending time with family, friends, etc. just as much as a man is supposed to provide, he’s also supposed to support and be there for loved ones and I made sure to put that in the forefront.
Your playing your first season in Europe in Germany for the Eisbaeren Bremerhaven. What kind of an experience has it been for you?
Yea this is my first year in Europe and it’s definitely been different. I love it here though, the team and club have welcomed me and it’s helped my transition to Europe and basketball here very smooth.
After playing in Asia you haven’t needed much adjustment period. What stands out in the German Pro A in style?
The style is very offensive oriented, lots of high IQ players. I’d say that’s been the biggest standout, which has been pretty easy for me to adjust too because I fit in right with the style.
What kind of an experience has it been sharing the back court with the highly talented Carrington Love? How have you profited from his game?
It’s been a great experience thus far, he’s one of the best guards I’ve ever played with. it’s helped me a lot from competing against him every day, but also learning from him too. We’re a scary backcourt that’s for sure.
Let’s talk a little about your game. You’re a 185cm guard that can do it all. If you had to compare your game to an NBA player who would best fit the description?
My favorite player is Mike Conley. He is a left handed player, little undersized, but good defender, can facilitate, shoot it, etc. I even use a right hand floater because I saw him do it so I’ll say him
You really fill the stat sheet nicely. How big is versatility a strength in your game?
I think versatility is an important part of my game. I think it allows me to be plugged in different positions or situations during the game but also allows me to have success. Being a good rebounder from the guard position allows me to push the break and play to my strengths like attacking downhill to score or getting in the lane to facilitate. it all goes hand in hand.
Your also an incredible one on one defender. Talk a little about how you have grown as a defender since leaving school?
I think I’ve grown tremendously as a defender. I’ve always had a knack for reading offenses and getting steals but I also gambled a lot which got me out of position. I’d like to think now I’m a much more solid defender, a smarter defender.
Do you feel like you could become an impact defender at the pro level?
Definitely so, like I said earlier being versatile allows me to have success and I think being an impact defender is another thing I bring to the table. it’s all pride at the end of the day, and I take my matchup personally so I’m always looking to be an impact defender.
What is a hidden strength that doesn’t always get noticed right away on the court?
I’d say it’s a culmination of my game and everything I can bring to the table. I’m a guy that does the ‘little things’ so add those up over a course of a game I think they make a big impact.
You put up incredible stats in the NCAA 2. But you opted to play in the Philippines and Thailand. I can’t imagine that you didn’t have offers from Europe. Talk a little about your first pro years in Asia.
My first years in Asia were great, got to get my feet wet to the professional life overseas. Being Filipino, it was a great situation for me to go to the Philippines and I enjoyed it.
You began your professional career with San Miguel Beermen (Philippines-PBA): ASEAN League. I remember interviewing Chris Oliver some years ago when he was playing in the up and coming Asean League. Talk a little how you experienced this league?
The Asean league was awesome, we got to travel all over south east Asia. I got to see the world, and the competition was good so it was a great experience being a first year guy.
You were teammates as a rookie with two legends Renaldo Balkman and Peter Ramos. What was it like being teammates with these guys? It must have been like being a kid in a candy store.
Yea playing with Balk and PJ was an experience for sure. Both high IQ players so it made it easy for me as a PG. They also took me under their wing per say and helped me in different ways. A great experience as a rookie.
Do you have some cool stories about your memories with them on road trips?
Yea every road trip was out of the country so they were all dope. I’d say going to Hong Kong, Singapore, and Malaysia we’re some of my favorite trips.
In your second season you played with Hitech Bangkok City (Thailand-TBL) averaging 19.8ppg, 6.3rpg, 4.8apg, Steals-2 (3.3spg), FGP: 39.1%, 3PT: 33.3%, FT-1 (82.5%). You exploded for 39 points in one game. What do you remember from Thailand?
Thailand was a great experience as well, where our gym was right downstairs so it was great experience because I lived in the gym and jus worked on my game. met some good people and got to play ball, I enjoyed it there.
You began your NCAA career at Eastern Michigan playing 49 games. In your two season you averaged 14 and 8 minutes. Despite limited minutes what positives did you get from these two years?
Eastern was a great experience for me, I got to be around a D1 program and really learn what it was like to be away from home. I had to grow up a little and I learned accountability because when you’re on your own it’s just you and you got get it done.
As a freshman you played Michigan and Michigan State back to back and combined played 34 minutes and beat Michigan in a 45-42 thriller. You played against numerous future NBA players. What do you remember from these two games?
Yea those two games were both fun environments, and it really showed me if I kept working I belong on that stage. Like you said I played against multiple NBA guys but that was fun, as a player you want play against the best every night.
You then finished at California State University San Marcos (NCAA) putting up great stats averaging 18.3ppg, 3.7rpg, 5.7apg, 2.2spg, FGP: 50.0%, 3PT: 42.3%, FT: 75.0% as a junior and 20.5ppg, 3.7rpg, 5.9apg, 2.6spg, FGP: 44.8%, 3PT: 37.1%, FT: 82.3% as a senior. How did your game grow and mature in these 2 years?
My game grew a lot at csusm because I was given the keys. I was able to blossom into the player id really always been but at the collegiate level. I was also given more and whom much is given much is expected so it helped grow as a leader as well.
In your first season there you lost both games against CS Domingeuz. Do you remember your battles against Vincent Golson? He is in his third year in Germany in the Pro B league.
Of course I remember those games, me and two two (vincent) are good friends. We actually met prior to us playing against each other as Cs dominguez was a school who recruited me. fast forward now we’re both here in gGrmany, but that’s my guy. I”m rooting for him every chance I get.
You had some incredible games in narrow wins like your 38 points against CS Monterey in the 84-81 win or 37 points in the 109-108 win over CS East Bay. Which game meant more to you?
I’d say the east bay game meant more. We were down big against East Bay so to be resilient and come back is a little more special.
How did BJ Foster groom and prepare you best for a professional career?
He helped in a couple ways, I think instilling confidence in me and giving me the keys was the biggest. It allowed me to be me.
Who won a one on one in practice you or Brian Wright?
We never played but I would win
Who was the best player that you ever played against that reached the NBA?
That’s a tough one, I’ve played against a handful of guys but I would say Caris Levert. I think his game is super smooth.
Please name your 5 best teammates of all-time.
C Love at the 1
Ray Parks jr at the 2
K Ward at 3
Balk at the 4
Pj Ramos at the 5
Please name your personal NBA Mount Rushmore of past or present heads?
Lebron, MJ, Bean, and probably James Harden
What is your personal opinion of the neverending debate of who is the greatest of all-time Michael Jordan or Lebron James?
I’m taking Lebron, my era, who I grew up watching
Did you see the sequel to the classic Coming To America movie? Shouldn’t they have left it alone?
No I didn’t see it but I would say they should’ve left it alone. first one a classic.
Thanks Ethan for the chat.