Sometimes things go so quickly in basketball life and it hasn’t been any different for Stanley Whittaker (183-PG-1994, college: Keiser) who only a few years ago was experiencing more the snail march in his career. He had come off a solid but not explosive career at Keisser University (NAIA) and was as far away from the easyCredit BBL as it is currently for hilarious You Tuber and Klay Thompson impersonator Dawson Gurley to ever visiting a Golden State Warriors game as he tricked security to entering the arena during the finals and putting up shots. It is more of a reach for a NAIA player to reach the pro level than a reality, but it does happen as guys make it here and there, but rarely. Stanley Whittaker has proven that it can be done. After a less than spectacular rookie season in Lithuania where he also had to deal with Covid, since basketball life has really risen for him. He then proceeded to play his break out season in Austria with UBSC Raiffeisen Graz (Austria-BSL) averaging 21.5ppg, 6.3rpg, Assists-2 (8.0apg), Steals-1 (2.6spg), FGP: 49.3%, 3PT: 40.5%, FT: 78.4% and this past season continued to show his extreme good basketball abilities helping lead unproven PS Karlsruhe unexpectedly into the playoffs and led the potent German Pro A in scoring averaging 22.3ppg, 5.1rpg, Assists-3 (6.6apg), 1.4spg, FGP: 48.9%, 3PT: 43.0%, FT: 84.6%. After another great season like that, it was obvious that he would be floored with offers this summer. He didn’t hesitate when easyCredit BBL team s.Oliver Wurzburg came calling and signed there. In a span of about 6 weeks after his last Pro A game with PS Karlsruhe, he reached his goal of the easyCredit BBL something he had set at the end of 2020 in Austria when he was dominating there together with Richaud Pack another dude like him who has had to grind his whole life and will get rewarded this summer with a job in a top league. No more snail tempo for Stanley Whittaker As things have looked up the last 2 years as he has reached the easyCredit BBL.
But let’s back track to April 28th the last game for PS Karlsruhe. After the disappointing 81-72 loss in Rostock that stopped PS Karlsruhe’s run to the final, the quick point guard who if had a choice would like to play in Spain someday was crushed. It took him a few weeks before he could talk to me about his season ending as the digestion period actually was snail tempo. Even if PS Karlsruhe entered the semi-finals against favorite Rostock with self-confidence after winning the last regular season game against them 80-73, they just ran out of gas in the playoffs getting swept 3-0 as turnovers and offensive rebounds always crept up and bit them in the butt. ‘It was tough series although we weren’t able to win a game in it, it was competitive. I was able to learn a lot from that series, so I’ll move forward & continue to grow’, stressed Stanley Whittaker. It is obvious that a competitor like Whittaker will never give an excuse like the depth factor, but at the end of the day getting beat by 16 three’s and non stop banging and giving up offensive rebounds won’t make winning any easier. ‘It was more so on us, we had 6/7 bodies it’ll be tough for anyone to play against another team with 10/11 guys’, said Stanley Whittaker. He played his heart out in the series averaging 19,0ppg, 5,0rpg and 5,0 apg while averaging an insane 42 minutes per game. He averaged 35 minutes per game for the season and even if there may have been fatigue, he kept fighting until the end. ‘I just learned that our group will battle until the very end. We came up short both times but we were battling.
All in all it was an incredible season for PS Karlsruhe as the American who listed the victory against Schwenningen clinching a ticket to the playoffs as his most memorable win was able so show a big smile weeks after concerning the season. ‘It was a successful season for our group through the ups & downs we battled through and showed resolve. I’m happy for this team, I enjoyed it’, stated Stanley Whittaker. Even if many believed the club overachieved, the American and his teammates believed from day 1 that they had something special. ‘Maybe in the eyes of you & everyone else we overachieved, but that never mattered to us, we knew what we had in our locker room, we knew that we were one of the better teams in the league from start to finish and I would bet other teams in the league felt the same’, warned Stanley Whittaker. The biggest obstacle that the team had to overcome week in and week out were the small rotations and Covid issues, but with the supreme guidance by Stanley Whittaker and his teammates never losing focus, they showed what can be possible even if the odds were often against them. ‘My duty is to always lead so that kind of goes without question, no matter the circumstances we have to be ready to play & compete in the games so that was always our mentality’, stressed Stanley Whittaker. Even if he was very instrumental to the success of the team, he couldn’t of led the league in scoring if he hadn’t had his teammates like Mo Pluskota, sniper Ferdinand Zylka, Trevion Crews or Matt Freeman to name just a few. In upcoming long bus rides to Rostock or Oldenburg this season, he surely will reflect on them again. ‘I’m just so proud of my guys and how they battled throughout the entire year, it was a long 9 months and they showed up to work every day and gave it what they had. Each one of them was important to our team success. I can’t really name an unsung hero, in my eyes they were all heroes. Matthew Moyer improved the most and all our young guys were good and played well for the minutes that they got’, remembered Stanley Whittaker.
The American who played 2 seasons at Frank Phillips College (JUCO) and listed Rhondell Goodwin and Rayshawn Simmons as his toughest guard foes in the Pro A kept his consistency from his Austria season with PS Karlsruhe averaging 22.3ppg, 5.1rpg, Assists-3 (6.6apg), 1.4spg, FGP: 48.9%, 3PT: 43.0%, FT: 84.6%. Stats like these are stats that many guys dream of and will never accomplish in a career, but for him it was honestly nothing special. When you began in JUCO, you are never satisfied and that mindset has been key not only for his success, but continued rise up the basketball ladder the last 2 years. ‘I think I had a solid season, didn’t finish as strong as I would have liked but in all it was a solid year’, stressed Stanley Whittaker. He also did a super job knowing when to score and when to find his teammates. But for him once again being satisfied is something that will never be in his vocabulary. ‘I think I can still be a better facilitator. But just reading the game honestly it’s not a complicated answer, just reading & reacting’, commented Stanley Whittaker. In the NBA it is no secret that playing less defense and taking off plays on defense is something that stars do so they can concentrate on their offensive capabilities, but overseas you have to play defense as in some systems missing a defensive assignment can cost you a job. Despite having so much responsibility on offense, the guard was also a vital component on defense, but once again wasn’t satisfied with his defense. ‘If it wasn’t Leo Behrend, I took on all of the toughest assignments on the perimeter of the opposing team’s top player. I know I can defend at a high level & I still have room to get better in all facets of my game’, stressed Stanley Whittaker. He proved that he could be a lethal scorer at the Pro A level scoring in double figures in all 34 games and netting 20 points or more 25 times, but there is more to his game then that and he knows he will have to grind even harder this summer in the lab to be able to continue his consistency in the easyCredit BBL. He just wants to continue to be a all around great player. ‘I’ll work on all facets of my game, my passing, my play making, my shooting, my defense and my body, all those will help me continue to grow & develop which is a goal of mine’, warned Stanley Whittaker. I’m sure he is really excited for the upcoming season as it will be interesting to see if he can continue his consistency and be a strong point guard in a top 5 league in Europe. I don’t think a Stanley Whittaker impersonator will be born that will try to enter the s.Oliver arena, the place where Dirk Nowitzki celebrated his first success as a kid in the 90’s, but I know that he won’t care about that. All Stanley Whittaker is concerned about right now is being able to play the game he loves and have success again. So why can’t it continue? His track record the last 2 years speaks for itself.