If a player from Heroes Den Bosch had been bored on the bus trip to Crailsheim, because their Netflix menu of movies had run out, that player surely could of sat next to Austin Price (193-G-1995, college: Lehigh) and been entertained. One of my standard questions for ages for professional ballers has been the classic debate question of all-time who is the greatest of all-time Jordan or Lebron and why isn’t Kobe mentioned more. Granted I have interviewed guys who have won chips here and there, but 98% of the time, the answer to the GOAT question ranges from one word to 3 sentences. But every now and then a player will philosophize about the question like Austin Price did. When I did some simple research on Austin Price and searched for his titles, I came up with 4 as a professional, but he has won more than that. ‘, Growing up I was used to winning and playing in important games. In high school I went to 3 Final Fours and won the State championship in my senior year. In college I got to 2 PLC title games. I won my rookie year, got to the semis in Belgium the next year. In year 4 I was part of a fiba euro cup team. Although I didn’t play in that final, I believe it says something about a person who is always indulging in a winning culture wherever they end up’, stressed Austin Price. He has won so much already and knows what winning is about and so do the GOAT candidates like a Jordan, Lebron or Kobe. So who is the GOAT? One could write a book about this topic. Where are you Dan Shaughnessy? The Boston Globe legendary columnist has written various incredible books like the Curse Of The Bambino and would surely give his 2 cents to this topic. The older folk most commonly will chose Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain or a Oscar Robertson. For me it’s Larry Bird no discussion, but for the younger generation the GOAT question is always between Michael Jordan and Lebron James. It’s only a shame that Kobe isn’t mentioned more in this debate. ‘Lebron does everything on the court. He is going to be #1 all time scoring, top 5 assist and top 5/10 in rebounds. The 3-1 comeback did it for me. 6’9 250 runs like the wind and has super bounce. I have never seen anything like Lebron. Even players coming up now I just don’t see how they are close to Lebron. I can’t imagine an NBA without him because he is still the most talked about player. I love Jordan though. Incredible scorer and defender. He has a lot more micro skills than Lebron that I can use. Kobe isn’t mentioned as much because I think it was clear Lebron was better. In their matchups Bron won most of them. I think Kobe is disrespected because he is Jordan without extreme intangibles. Like huge hands, extreme athleticism (Kobe is athletic but not in the tier of Bron and MJ). Kobe was more influential on the world than both of them though from a personal growth standpoint. He worked his ass off and was able to explain why he did things the way he did things. He built his mind, body and spirit. He wasn’t necessarily as gifted as MJ and Bron but he realized his full potential regardless’, warned Austin Price. But he can do more than just philosophize brilliantly about basketball, but at the same time is a great player as well.
Austin Price who lists Malcolm Brogdon and Edmond Sumner as his toughest foes in the NCAA was born on September 16th, 1995 in Indianapolis, Indiana and moved to Detroit when he was in high school. He went to Detroit country day school and averaged 16,0ppg, 5,0apg and 2,0spg as a junior and was team captain as a senior. He also was gifted in the class room amassing a 3.65 GPA. He then attended Lehigh University (NCAA) from 2013-2017 playing a total of 124 NCAA games. In his freshman season he was named to the Patriot League all rookie team and was on the Patriot League honor role. He made the Patriot League third team in his junior and senior seasons. He was able to improve his scoring average each season. ‘At Lehigh I felt like I was always adapting. I played with great players. I want to say 6 of us played in Europe while I was there. I think I mostly grew defensively. I was challenged with guarding the best guard of every team I played against in college’, stressed Austin Price. He reached 2 Patriot League title games losing. The first one against Holy Cross was a 3 point nailbiter while the second was a blow out loss to Bucknell. ‘The 2nd final hurt more because it was my last college game. You never want to take off your jersey for the last time with a loss’, remembered Austin price. In his last 2 seasons he played 63 games and scored in double figures in 42 games. He had some big games against Bucknell scoring 25 points and 24 points against Lafayette, but the most memorable game was his last game against Colgate where he scored 27 points. ‘My fondest game I would say is beating Colgate in my last home game in Stabler. To go out with such a great game was a blessing. I also am very proud of how I played against Villanova. Although we lost, I proved to myself I can compete against the best of the best’, stated Austin Price. He also has fond memories of his teammates like Kahron Ross who balled in Germany and would go back and forth with him during practices. Two other guys were the beast Tim Kempton and Kyle Leufroy who had 2 productive seasons in Germany in the Pro A, but currently are out of basketball. ‘I thought Tim would fare better overseas. He always had a knack for scoring. I would ask myself how he scored many times in my career at Lehigh. He came down with an injury and we almost were reunited in Belgium but he wasn’t able to fully recover. Last time I spoke with Kyle he said he was looking to make a comeback to basketball’, expressed Austin Price. He left Lehigh second in school history with 240 three-pointers, and 13th in scoring with 1,453 points. A lot of his success on the court is credited to head coach Brett Reed who helped groom and prepare him for a professional career overseas. ‘Coach Reed would always hold you accountable in everything you did. Looking back it’s the biggest thing he taught to me is hold myself to a standard’, remembered Austin Price.
The American who lists Jodan Price (my brother), Edmond Sumner (high school teammate,) James Young (AAU teammate), Tim Kempton (college teammate) Khadeen Carrington, Pat Miller, Briain Angola, and Wayne Selden as his best teammates of all-time began his rookie season overseas with the Koping Stars (Sweden-Superettan) averaging 20.1pp), 4.2rpg, 4.7apg, 1.3spg, FGP: 52.0%, 3PT: 36.5%, FT: 87.0% and bang in his first pro try wins the league title. Despite adjusting so well on and off the court, he does remember his wake up call to being overseas and being far away from home. ‘The first week when I tried calling my mom and it’s 5am there and for me it was 11am so it felt normal to make a call after an early workout but she answered and was worried because it was so early there. When I was in school it felt far. I was 10hours driving but being 6hour time difference made it difficult to connect with my family since I am normally sleeping the time they are off work’, said Austin Price. He scored in double figures in every game including 31 points against AIK Basket and 29 points against Djurgarden. Having other American veterans on board is always helpful in the integration and he will never forget Stan Brown and Steve Smith. ‘I love my guys. I still talk to Stan every now and then. It was great having him as a vet. He also played for my uncle in college so we had a connection right away. He just taught me not take everything coaches say to heart just learn from it and adjust. Steve, I haven’t talked to him in a while but he would just tell me to play my game. Great captain when things in practice started to get out of hand or energy was low he would always get us back right and going hard’, warned Austin Price. In his second season he made the jump to a higher league playing with Hubo Limburg United (Belgium-Euromillions League) averaging 9.3ppg, 2.3rpg, 2.6apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 42.9%, 3PT: 42.1%, FT: 88.0%. After defeating Leuven and Spirou in the playoffs, his season ended against Oostende. He gave all he had scoring 20 points, but it simply wasn’t enough. ‘From that game in particular I felt like I was really hitting my stride. We had a coaching change and it took me awhile to really learn how to use the system he created. I played well sure and ran the system but at the end of the season I really started to string some games together. Coach really instilled confidence in me that I can play at a high level. I was going up against Khadeen Carrington every day and competing with him so I learned I have it in me to be a great player in Europe’, stressed Austin Price. He scored in double figures in 21 of 37 games and dished out 10 assists against the Kangoeroes.
In his third pro season, he went to another new country Bulgaria and had a good season playing with BC Beroe (Bulgaria-NBL) averaging 15.6ppg, 4.8rpg, 2.8apg, Steals-5 (1.8spg), FGP: 52.1%, 3PT: 43.5%, FT: 84.6%. ‘I got a lot of positives. Got life long friends from that season. I learned how to lead a team. Every game I had to bring my A game and that’s tough to do. You learn to not get too high or too low’, added Austin Price. He scored in double figures in 19 of 20 league games in Bulgaria including 23 points against Academic and 22 points against Rilski. In 2020-2021 he played with Maccabi Raanana (Israel-National League) averaging 17.7ppg, 3.4rpg, 3.1apg, 2FGP: 49.2%, 3FGP: 37.3%, FT: 75.8%. It wasn’t all fun and games with the weather and food in Israel, but he had to deal with COVID like all the rest. ‘ Covid was definitely an experience. I was in my apartment for 2 weeks when I got to Israel and multiple times during the season we had lockdowns where I couldn’t leave the apartment or the area I was living in. However, as the restrictions eased it felt as though COVID was gone and I was able to have a good time’, expressed Austin Price. He had some massive games against H Afula exploding for 36 points and hit H Acre for 33 points. In the 33 point game, he was the best player on the floor outdueling ex New York Knick Chris Smith. ‘They were big games because I proved to myself I can outplay other big time players and I felt like I was getting my game to be more complete. I made 3s those games but I also got to the rim and scored in different ways other than 3s’, remembered Austin Price.
So now lets fast forward to 2022 as the scoring guard who lists Bill Russell, Kareem, Magic, and Jordan on his personal NBA Mount Rushmore is playing his second season with Hero’s Den Bosch and already has won 2 titles in his short time there. Last season he demonstrated his consistency in 3 leagues BNXT League averaging 13.2ppg, 2.5rpg, 1.9apg, 1.4spg, FGP: 49.4%, 3PT: 45.5%, FT: 82.4%; 11.5ppg, 1.5rpg, 1.4apg, Steals-5 (1.5spg), FGP: 40.9%, 3PT: 40.5%, FT: 74.2%; in the Dutch DBL and: 10.5ppg, 2.3rpg, 1.2apg, 1.5spg, FGP: 38.5%, 3PT: 39.0%, FT: 71.4% in the Fiba Europe Cup. ‘It’s been a great experience. Personally I have had my ups and downs. There was a learning curve to learning the system but now that I have got it down I can thrive here. I appreciate that the organization that let’s the players play and takes care of everything off the court’, said Austin Price. The club is having another good season and reached the next round of the Fiba Europe Cup. The team changed their roster around bringing in new key pieces with Kobe Webster, Emmett Naar, Chris-Edou Ndow and Donte Thomas just to name a few and have found a healthy chemistry, but the team is nowhere near their peak yet. ‘We all get along and converse with each other daily. I feel we are still not close to reaching our full potential as a team. In comparison to last year we aren’t near where we were last year as unit moving as one. We have more talent, but the chemistry is only just beginning to blossom in my opinion. I believe we have a great chance to do well in Fiba Europe Cup. Right now we are further ahead defensively than on the Offensive end. There’s a ton of upside on that end as we begin to adjust to what other teams are trying to take away’, warned Austin Price.
The guard who didn’t see the sequel to the classic Coming To America but normally believes that classic movies like that should be left alone is having another solid offensive season. He is a player that has never modelled his game after certain NBA players, but just taken bits and pieces from guys. He has always been a player that has filled the stat sheet. ‘I’m very versatile. I find I adapt well to the situations coaches put me in. Sometimes longer than others but I will get my role down and be successful no matter what is asked of me’, warned Austin Price. In the BNXT league he is averaging 12,3ppg, 2,6rpg and 2,2apg and shooting in an amazing 52% from outside while in the Fiba Europe Cup he is averaging 8,5ppg, 1,3rpg, 1,8apg and 2,2spg. His scoring is down from last season, but his outside shooting has really stood out while he is less of a facilitator then in other years in his career. ‘ We have a lot more talent this year so the points are more spread out. So my role as a scorer has diminished due to having a lot more weapons but that’s ok. My shooting is great in the BNXT. I am working to transfer that to Fiba games. I would say in past years I had the ball in my hands more. I brought the ball up more often and was more of a decision maker. Here I have been the finisher. I mostly work out of catch and shoot situations where I deal with close outs’, stressed Austin Price. He is a player that has proved he can be consistent in various leagues in Europe and still wants to climb the basketball ladder, but knows that there are still area’s in his game to improve. ‘I am working on rebounding and ball handling. I feel like with my size I need to be an elite ball handler and I need to be able to prove I can get rebounds. I felt like that was the only difference between me and other players who made big leaps from last season’, stated Austin Price. It will be interesting where his journey will go in the next years. Adding more titles to his collection is a big priority and with Hero’s den Bosch he will have good chances. One thing is for sure, the long bus rides from De Bosch to other cities in Europe where they are playing Fiba Europe cup games will never be boring when Austin Price is on board. Give him the topic of Goat and that seemingly 6-7 hours bus ride will go in a flash when he describes why Lebron James is the GOAT.