CJ Anderson (Art Giants Duesseldorf) Is A Versatile Player That Can Adjust To Anyone

One of the exciting aspects of pro sports in Germany for fans no matter if it’s soccer, ice hockey or basketball is that your club can never take off a game. It isn’t like in the NBA where a team like the Knicks in the past could flounder around for a few seasons and always play against a Golden State the next season, because in Germany if you struggle in a season, you can find yourself a league lower the next season and everything changes for that club especially financially. Pro A club Art Giants Duesseldorf a team that only some years ago were in the Regionalliga (4th division) and daydreaming of moving up made the jump up to the Pro A this season, but now are on the verge of moving down again as they currently are having a head to head battle with Leverkusen to remain in the league as Schwenningen is in last place and will be the first team to move down. Of course, it is double bitter when you play your heart out and lose by 1 point on back to back weekends against Tuebingen and Giessen. One player who is in the middle of the drama has been C.J. Anderson (197-G-1996, college: UMass, agency: One Motive Sports) an American who is in his third professional season after playing in Hungry and Austria and came in January to help in the stretch run. The Pro A is an underrated league that has many very talented American guards that could play in the top league easyCredit BBL. Despite coming in late, he has played solidly in the Pro A. He probably could of played somewhere earlier, but it was more about not going somewhere and then seeing quickly having made the wrong decision. ‘Yes it was more about the right fit and staying ready when the call comes. I enjoyed the fact I was able to spend time with family’, said C.J. Anderson. So far he is giving his all and has played solidly in the Pro A averaging 10,1ppg, 4,5rpg, 2,9apg and 1,0spg. ‘My role is to be a playmaker and defend. It’s easy to score when you’re surrounded by shooters and guys that can create their own shot as well. Basketball is basketball. You adjust to the level just by playing the game. I embrace any challenge’, warned C.J. Anderson. Of course being able to play with 2 high quality players like Booker Coplin and Ryan Richmond has sweetened the experience. ‘It’s been great to play with those guys. It was easy to build chemistry with them both. I appreciate that they have accepted me to be able to play my game in order to compliment theirs’, added C.J. Anderson.

C.J. Anderson who lists Trae Young and Jordan McCrae as the toughest players that he ever faced on the court is a 26 year old 197cm guard that was born on May 10th, 1996 in Memphis, Tennessee. He attended Whitehaven high school and then enjoyed a 4 year career at the University of Massachusetts (NCAA) from 2014-2018 playing a total of 125 NCAA games. He did not have a big offensive scoring role in his first 3 seasons. He averaged 10 minutes in his first season and then they rose to 24 and 21 minutes. He never averaged more than 4,9ppg in his first 3 seasons. ‘It was tough because I had to wait my turn. It’s not easy coming from being one of the best in your high school to having to understand that it’s all about timing and patience’, stated C.J. Anderson. But in his senior year, he finally got a real chance logging 35 minutes per game and averaging 11.0ppg, 5.0rpg, 4.9apg, FGP: 42.6%, 3PT: 40.5%, FT: 81.3%. ‘My senior year I was given an opportunity to go out there and go to work. We didn’t have a huge roster so I was asked to do more and be myself’, remembered C.J. Anderson. In his senior year he scored in double figures in 19 games including hitting Quinnipiac for 23 points in a tough 68-66 loss, Richmond for 22 points in a 25 point loss, but helped beat La Salle scoring 21 points in a great 69-67 win. After playing his first 3 years for Derek Kellogg, he finally got the trust from Matt McCall in his senior year. ‘The best advice I was given by him was to go out there and just have fun. He saw I was playing a little tense for a period of time and told me to remember why I started to play the game’, said C.J. Anderson who remembers beating teammate Carl Pierre in every 1-1 match they played against each other.

The American who lists Michael Jordan , Kareem Abdul Jabaar , Lebron James, and Stephen Curry on his personal NBA Mount Rushmore began his professional career in 2018 in the G-League. He split time with the Erie Bay Hawks (NBA G League) averaging 2.8ppg, 2.3rpg, 1.4apg, and in March’19 signed with the Sioux Falls Skyforce (NBA G League) averaging 2.3ppg, 2.0rpg, 1.0apg. He surely wished for a different type of rookie season, but in the long run, it was an learning experience for him. ‘It was a tough situation. You had to learn how to adjust to when it’s your time in the G league. You could have 5 straight games where you play none or 5 minutes and then the next the team needs you to play 25 minutes. You have to take advantage of that opportunity. The NBA is the greatest experience of my life. The whole lifestyle and resources there are the best I’ve ever been a part of’, stressed C.J. Anderson. He was able to learn from ex NBA player Calbert Cheaney and simply will never forget having received the opportunity to be part of a NBA farm team. ‘He was a very down to earth man. He was always giving advice and didn’t mind helping me with my game or just studying the game. I realized I was part of a NBA organization by the way they took care of the players. The best experience was when it was time to play the game we had everything and more for what we needed for the game’, remembered C.J. Anderson.

The big guard who lists Leron Black , Chris Chiozza , Anton Beard , Marcanvis Hymon , and Jaylen Adams as his 5 best teammates of all-time came overseas in 2021 and played with Oroszlanyi Sportegylet E Lions (Hungary) averaging 9.6ppg, 5.3rpg, 2.9apg, 1.1spg, FGP: 54.1%, 3PT: 32.4%, FT: 74.7%. Every American has that first wake up call where he senses that there is a culture shock and not necessarily a Mcdonalds around the corner. ‘My wake up call was when I first got into my home and realized that everything was totally different from America’, said C.J. Anderson. He scored in double figures in 14 games including 22 points against DEAC and 22 points against ZTE KK and even had a Kevin Love type of game hauling down 21 boards against PVSK-Veolia. Last season he made the jump to team Basket Swans Gmunden (Austria-BSL) averaging 9.9ppg, 4.6rpg, 4.1apg, FGP: 55.4%, 3PT: 30.0%, FT: 60.7%. He was able to celebrate his first chip winning the Super Cup. ‘It was a great experience winning the SuperCup. We will remember the entire atmosphere and feeling of winning such a special accomplishment’, added C.J. Anderson. He was surrounded with serious talent in Gmunden with talented guards Stephon Jelks and Eric Washington who are making their marks in the easyCredit BBL this season. Being able to hold his own against guys like this gives him hope to continue to move up he basketball ladder. ‘I’m so happy for Stephon. He is my brother for life and I’m so happy that he has this opportunity. I want to have the opportunity to play a role in the NBA or play in the EuroLeague or Australia NBL. I saw that Eric was special. His mindset was on another level. That’s what takes you there. The talent was already there. It’s all about when you’re given the opportunity’, stated C.J. Anderson.

The Tennessee native who has Michael Jordan as his GOAT and feels that the classic movie Coming To America should have been left along is a big guard who models his game around John Wall and Herbert Jones. ‘I love to facilitate , score , and defend at a very high level’, warned C.J. Anderson. He is a very versatile player and like all Americans has a high self-confidence rate and knows he can impact the game in many ways. ‘My biggest strength is that I can do it all and that I can play alongside all. It helps a lot that I can adjust with anyone’, commented C.J. Anderson. His versatility is also a part of his game that will continue to affect his defensive game and most likely how well he can move up the basketball ladder and recommend himself for greater tasks in higher leagues. ‘My versatility is what helps me. I can play and defend the 1-4. I truly believe it can help with being able to mix and match with different 5’s on the court’, warned C.J. Anderson. In in the NCAA, he shot the ball at 40% from outside, but as a professional overseas, his three point shooting continues to be a work in progress. Currently he is shooting only 11,1% from outside. ‘I want to improve shooting the 3. I can shoot the ball but I enjoy finishing with contact and taking The mid range pull up’, stated C.J. Anderson. It will be interesting how C.J. Anderson finishes up his third professional season overseas in Germany with the ART Giants Duesseldorf. He won a title last season in Austria and won’t do it this season in Germany, but helping save the team from moving back to the Pro B will be worth as much as a title in Duesseldorf.


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