Xeyrius Williams Knows He Needs To Score At All 3 Levels No Matter What The Defense Gives Him To Reach The Highest Level

Xeyrius Williams (206-PF-1997, college: Akron) is a 25 year old 206cm forward from Ohio that played his third professional season and first in Germany with s.Oliver Wurzburg averaging 9,2ppg, 3,8rpg, 1,0apg and 1,0spg. Last season he played with Aris Thessaloniki (Greece-GBL) averaging 10.1ppg, 4.8rpg, FGP: 45.4%, 3PT: 33.8%, FT: 60.9%. He played his rookie season with Egis Kormend (Hungary-A Division) averaging 8.9ppg, 5.2rpg, 1.0spg, 2FGP: 47.9%, 3FGP: 34.1%, FT: 83.3%, in Dec.’20 moved to JP-Auto Jaszbereny KSE (Hungary-A Division) averaging 14.8ppg, 6.8rpg, 1.4apg, 1.0spg, FGP: 56.5%, 3PT: 43.4%, FT: 80.6%. He began his basketball career at Wayne high school and then played at the University of Dayton (NCAA) ( from 2015-2018 playing 75 games. He finished his NCAA career at The University of Akron (NCAA) averaging 13.9ppg, 9.5rpg, 1.3apg, FGP: 48.0%, 3PT: 29.9%, FT: 90.8%. He spoke to germanhoops.com about basketball.

Thanks Xeyrius for talking to germanhoops.com. Before we get to basketball, I want to find out more about your unique name. It is a name that I have never heard before. Was there a special reason why your parents gave you that name?

My name actually came from a combination of a few things, first my parents liked the Greek mythology so they loved the name Zeus and then they also knew of a Persian king named xerxes and they somehow came up with my name

You played with easyCredit BBL team s.Oliver Wurzburg. What do you know in general about the country Germany and it’s basketball? Did you seek advice from ex teammate Tyler Cheese who played in Germany last season?

I just know that the country is beautiful place to live and he also shared with me about some of the restaurants and what to expect living wise.

Two Akron legends Dru Joyce and Romeo Travis who won 3 Ohio high school titles with St Marys and Lebron James played in Germany. Did you ever reach out to them or meet them before?

I did not reach out to them prior to signing

After playing in Hungary and Greece, you then came to Germany. What were the main reasons why you chose this organization?

I chose this organization because I think it will be a great opportunity for me to continue winning like we did in Greece, and showcase my skills in a very competitive league.

The club was very confident in your abilities. You had a very solid season in Greece. Do you feel like you were ready to become an impact player in a top league in Europe?

I had a very productive and successful summer where I improved a lot on my game to make sure I am in the best spot physically and mentally to tackle the obstacles this season will throw my way.

Let’s talk a bit about your game. You’re a 206cm forward. If you had to compare your game to an NBA player who would best fit the description?

I feel that I am similar to a KD especially with my body type and my ability to face up in the post is similar to Carmello

You can shoot the ball, score, rebound and defend. Are you the classic definition of a modern day forward?

I don’t think there are certain definitions I just do what the game needs and try to do it to the best of my abilities.

You’re a guy that can do a lot at both ends of the court. What other strengths does your game incorporate?

My ability to be a leader to lead by example on and off the court with my work ethic and commitment to doing the little things.

Your also a talented shot blocker. How would you define your defensive game now and where do you still want to go with it?

I can always improve defensively. It’s something that I think takes heart and will to do it. It is not the prettiest part of the game but it is a very important part of the game.

On what area’s of your game are you working on most now so that you can continue to improve your game?

Mid range pull up has to become deadly still building on my faceup and footwork in the post. I got to continue to be crafty and smart when playing offensively and defensively making reads and creating more. finishing, everything in my game can be improved upon.

Last season you had a solid season with Aris Thessaloniki (Greece-GBL) averaging 10.1ppg, 4.8rpg, FGP: 45.4%, 3PT: 33.8%, FT: 60.9%. You played against top Euroleague team Panathinaikos 4 times and won the first game against them. You had solid games. When you look back at those games what do you believe is still missing from your game to be a Euroleague player?

Just doing these things consistently. Scoring at all 3 levels. no matter what the defense does. I have to find a way to be effective whether that be scoring or creating for my teammates.

What do you remember from your battles in those games with Okaro White? How much did a guy like that motivate and elevate your game?

It was really fun to match with him he is a really good and smart defender so it was fun to watch some of the little things he does and incorporate them in my game.

You split your rookie season with Egis Kormend (Hungary-A Division) averaging 8.9ppg, 5.2rpg, 1.0spg, 2FGP: 47.9%, 3FGP: 34.1%, FT: 83.3%, in Dec.’20 moved to JP-Auto Jaszbereny KSE (Hungary-A Division) averaging 14.8ppg, 6.8rpg, 1.4apg, 1.0spg, FGP: 56.5%, 3PT: 43.4%, FT: 80.6%. What do you remember being your wake up call to being overseas where you knew that you were very far away from home?

There was no wake up call, I was just in a position where I was put inside of a box could not play my game so I was less productive than what I was capable of.

You played 3 seasons at Dayton (NCAA). It was kind of an up and down affair. Do you sometimes wonder if you would have finished there had you not suffered that injury in your junior season?

I just didn’t like the plan that the new coaching staff had for me. I felt that my best choice was to go elsewhere

You really had some good games at Dayton (NCAA). Despite leaving after 3 years what benefits do you still think did you get out of the experience?

Definitely knowing how to play in front of a crowd and I learned a lot about improvement knowing how to work and develop my game when I was playing under Archie Miller.

In your junior year you were teammates with Giannis brother Kostas. What kind of an experience was it battling him in practice?

It was good. He has elite level length with his wingspan and ability to block shots it was great to play against that pro level height and wingspan.

You then moved to the University of Akron and after sitting out a season had a superb senior year averaging 13.9ppg, 9.5rpg, 1.3apg, FGP: 48.0%, 3PT: 29.9%, FT: 90.8%. How did your game grow in your senior year?

it was a lot of confidence from being healthy and the confidence John Groce had in me. I am happy I intrusted him with my senior year

What kind of an experience was it being teammates with Tyler Cheese. He had a lot of misfortune winning just 1 game in Germany last season? The guy definitely has game. Do you feel like one day your paths will meet again on the court somewhere in the world?

With this pro game the possibilites are endless but being teammates with Cheese was a great experience. We were able to win together and he is a very good player.

I can imagine your favorite game was your buzzer beater win over Eastern Michigan. How often do you think have you watched that in the last years?

My favorite game was actually our final game against Kent state with that being our rival it was nice to send them home with a L.

How did head coach John Groce groom and prepare you best for a professional career?

He emphasizes a lot of little things that pro’s are expected to do on and off the court with work ethic and how we carry ourselves it keeps me grounded thinking back to these things.

Who won a 1-1 in practice you or Jaden Sayles?

I still win to this day when me and Jaden Sayles play one on one but he is a very good player who is looking to start his pro career here this season so excited to see where ball takes him

Who was the toughest player that you battled in the NCAA that went to the NBA?

I think it was Ben Simmons. I played him in high school. He is a very good player to no surprise he is an nba all star

Please name your 5 best teammates of all-time?

I have had great teammates over the years too many to count they all are hall of famers in my eyes

Please list your personal NBA Mount Rushmore?

Lebron, Jordan, Steph, Kobe and Shaq

What is your personal opinion of the neverending debate of who is the greatest of all-time Jordan or Lebron?

I don’t really get into that debate I just like to hear people’s opinions.

Did you see the sequel to the classic Coming To America? Shouldn’t they have left it alone?

I never saw the sequel but I know the first was hilarious that’s why it is what it is a “classic”

Thanks Xeyrius for the chat.


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