The Miles Basketball Minute with Quantez Robertson: Tez Retires And Goes Down Memory Lane

Miles Schmidt-Scheuber and ex player Quantez Robertson May 1, 2023

It was Thursday afternoon on April 27th at 3,38 when my phone got a WhatsApp message from Fraport Skyliner legend Quantez Robertson (188-SG-1984, college: Auburn, agency: Interperformances). I wasn’t there to read it the message at that moment. I’m not always reachable and actually didn’t have my phone in my possession for a few hours. When I finally had my phone around 6,30pm I read the following message. ‘Hey I’m officially done playing basketball and this is my last year’. As I read this phrase, I tried to digest the information as 14 years of wonderful memories of Tez were circling in my mind. I mean everyone was expecting for him to retire after this season. He was in his 14th season and had been losing the last 2 seasons and he wasn’t actually getting any younger. Even if he finally deserves to stop playing and go home again and be in the States fulltime the first time since 2009, I was still very sad. I have been covering the Fraport Skyliners since 2004 and had never had such an intense working relationship with a player like Quantez Robertson which really had grown in the last years. In the last 3 years I regularly released Miles Basketball Minute articles featuring Quantez Robertson about the state of the Fraport Skyliners, but also other interesting topics like Lebron James, Charles Barkley, The Euro 2022, Autograph collecting, Derrick Allen, Rickey Paulding, summer vacation, making it into an Argentine newspaper with me, Easter and Reese’s, Peanut Butter Cups, PJ Tucker and of course Tom Brady was mentioned a few times. I loved shooting the breeze with Quantez Robertson and now writing entertaining articles with Tez quotes would possibly come to an end. Life goes on and I have to accept it. I saw Tez for the first time since hearing of his decision at the Pro B playoff game against the BSW Sixers on Sunday night and congratulated his wife that she finally had her husband forever back home in the States. Tez then put a smile on my face with a fancy tee shirt with Tez Mania plastered on the front. He looked down, but at that moment I had no idea he would never play again. I thought that he would finish out the season, but somehow he forgot to tell me that. 2 hours before the game on Monday against Wurzburg, the Fraport Skyliners officially released the announcement by Tez that he was retiring and injury would prevent him from finishing the season. After the big win over Wurzburg that was dedicated to him, I finally corner Tez in the hall away and started firing questions at him something he had always been used to. He came over relaxed when talking about why he chose to step away from the game. ‘I made the decision after the Braunschweig game. The doctor said my season was over because I had a foot injury. It was a tough decision, but once he made it clear to me how bad it was, the decision to retire was made easier. He told me if I kept playing then I could really hurt my foot for the long run’, stressed Quantez Robertson.

That this season was tough on the ex Auburn player who believes despite Steph Curry’s magical 50 points recently, he is still behind Magic Johnson in the all-time best point guards of all-time rating was no secret as being a big time competitor, you could sense the losing was really eating at him. The team was losing and were wrapped in the cellar with little hope of getting out. His minutes had diminished and as a competitor one does sense that the abilities are waning a bit. ‘I may not be as athletic as 10 years ago, but one thing is for sure I will always be a competitor. I think that I showed my whole career that I could compete at a high level’, stressed Quantez Robertson. His last home game was against medi Bayreuth where nobody ever could have thought that that would be his last home game, but it was. His first pro game was on October 9th 2009 against Trier where he steered 3 points, 4 rebounds and a block in 29 minutes in a loss and his last home game was on April 23rd 2023 where he had 13 points, 2 rebounds and 4 assists in a 113-107 loss against Bayreuth and his last pro game was on April 25th where he had 2 points, 3 rebounds and 2 steals in a 86-71 loss against Braunschweig. It won’t sink in yet, but in a few months he will realize that he isn’t playing the game he loves anymore. ‘I will really miss playing in an atmosphere like against Wurzburg. I really miss competing with my teammates and having fun after wins and just bringing joy to fans with wins and highlights’, commented Quantez Robertson. This season he played with many talented Americans like Isaiah Washington, Marcus Lewis and even had buddy Jordan Theodore back for a few games. He also had talented Germans on his side like second year man Lukas Wank. ‘Lukas was the most improved player on the team. He played a lot more this season and had a bigger role. He was a big reason for many of our wins. He never backed down against anyone and always played hard. His offense made strides’, expressed Quantez Robertson who felt the unsung hero of the team was the team. He scored in double figures in 9 games this season including 18 points in a tough loss to Bamberg and netted 14 points a piece in thrilling tight wins against Hamburg and Chemnitz in 4 and 5 point victories. He remembered exactly what his favorite game was this season. In that game I didn’t get on him about why he never dunks anymore. ‘It was the game where I made the dunk on the fast break. I think it was against Hamburg’, smiled Quantez Robertson.

Foto credit Fraport Skyliners

When you played 14 seasons and had 4,425 points, 1727 rebounds, 1370 assists and 742 steals and becoming the Fraport Skyliners all-time leading scorer and easyCredit BBL all-time steal leader, it is only common that you will have many many memories. So let’s go down memory lane with Tez. One can guess which one of his 479 games was his favorite, but he also had 3 other favorite games. ‘My favorite game was when we won the Fiba Europe Cup game. I also had 3 other favorite games and they were the 3 games when I played Jimmy Mckinney when he played with Tuebingen, Wurzburg and Bonn. Jimmy was really important for me at the start. He showed me the ropes’, stated Quantez Robertson. But he also had another favorite game. ‘My personal favorite game was when I scored 30 points in Russia against Saratov’, added Quantez Robertson. The steal king had many many great teammates and it is only logical that out of respect to everyone that he can’t name his 5 favorite teammates of all-time, but what about his toughest 5 opponents? He came up rapidly with 4, but then took a moment and added 2 more and certainly will never forget those nasty Bamberg teams. ‘My toughest opponents were Immanuel Mcelroy, Rickey Paulding, Reggie Redding, Isaiah Swann and from Bamberg Casey Jacobson and PJ Tucker’, said Quantez Robertson. Then I reveal my all-time Skyliners starting 5 from 2000 until today with Pascal Roller/Dashaun Wood, Tyrone Ellis, Quantez Robertson, Chris Williams and Mario Kasun. I then get a big laugh out of Tez wondering if that starting 5 could beat a NBA team’ ‘That is a pretty good starting 5, but we won’t beat a NBA team. NBA teams have a lot more fire power at every position’, warned Quantez Robertson. So what is Tez’s personal starting 5 in 14 years and all German starting 5 with him included? ‘I have Jordan Theodore at the point, Jimmy Mckinney at the 2, me at the 3, Mike Morrison at the 4 and Joe Voigtmann at the five. My German starting 5 is Pascal Roller, Dominik Bahiense De Mello, me, Danilo Barthel and Joe Voigtmann’, added Quantez Robertson.

picture credit Fraport Skyliners

Two guys that were instrumental in Quantez Robertson‘s career were Gordon Herbert and Murat Didin. Herbert was on hand before the Wurzburg game in the short ceremony and said some words. Many believe that Murat Didin discovered Tez, but contrary to belief it was actually ex Fraport Skyliner Aubrey Reese. ‘Gorde Herbert is one of the best coaches that I ever had. He trusted me on the floor. He always made sure we were ready to go on the floor. I remember telling him that we would win the Fiba Europe cup and we did. After we won the title, I gave him a big hug and said we did it. I’m really thankful that Murat Didin gave me an opportunity in Frankfurt, but it was actually Aubrey Reese who discovered my talent. I worked out with Aubrey and he told Murat about me. Murat was a wild and animated coach and we all loved him. We showed that we were just as crazy as him when we played. He got the crowd behind us and pumped us up and brought a lot of excitement’, remembered Quantez Robertson. But it wasn’t only the amazing wins and plays that he achieved on the court that will remain in his memory vault, but also things off the court. ‘I will never forget getting together with the guys at the end of the season and go paint balling. I also remember once early in my career riding go carts’, said Quantez Robertson. So what is the next step for Quantez Robertson after his playing days. He has been helping coach his kids in sports like Quantez Jr who is very talented at numerous sports, but now he could devote more time to his kids, but he could also imagine himself becoming a trainer or coach for others. But what about getting into entertainment? In 2018 I recommended to Tez and Mike Morrison to start a comedy show. I know they would excel at that. How often did I hear them joking around during Morrison’s 4 years in Frankfurt when I was waiting for them after games to talk basketball. The two jokesters shared a room on the road for four years and no matter if they were chilling in Russia, Estonia, Slovenia, Israel, Oldenburg or Bremerhaven, one can be sure that more practical jokes were done. A comical example of their good off court chemistry happened in the 2017-2018 season when Robertson was watching a Pro B playoff game of the Fraport Skyliners Juniors against Lok Bernau and watched a rare three by Frankfurt big man Tobias Jahn. The season before Morrison hit a big three against FC Bayern Munich in the playoffs and it had been the first in his professional career. ‘Tobias hasn’t taken many three’s this season. He played good offense and was getting rebounds. Morrison’s three was funnier. Jahn can shoot, but Mike can’t smiled Quantez Robertson. When Morrison heard of this comment by Tez, he was quick to reply. ‘Tez can say what he wants. The fact still remains that I have the highest 3 point percentage in the history of the BBL and when someone passes 100 percent let me know’, stressed Mike Morrison. So I brought up the Mo and Tez comedy show again to Tez in 2023. ‘That would be funny. We had our moments. We had wild and crazy times in the locker room, on the phone and on the road. We played a lot of cards’, remembered Quantez Robertson. I will keep pestering Tez and Mike Mo about that comedy show.

Tez, Miles Schmidt-Scheuber and MIke Morrison in the Fraport arena in 2019

I covered Quantez Robertson for 14 seasons. On the court I will always remember him as a diehard competitor who did everything to win. I loved watching his aggressive and relentless defense that annoyed team after team. He may always be remembered as a defensive stopper, but he was a very underrated passer and a guy that often enough helped out at point guard. Even if he wasn’t the greatest three point shooter, I liked watching his jump and release of his jump shot. Off the court, he was a real pleasant guy. We had a very good working relationship. He never refused an interview and I thank him for his professionalism. Especially in the last 3 years our player/reporter relationship grew. I had a lot of fun writing pieces on various topics and he was always a good sport to talk to me. I interviewed him hundreds of times after games as he gave me his insight about wins and losses. I looked back in my archive library and found that Tez made 67 titles of articles for eurobasket and German hoops in his 14 years. I gave him a lot of love and he is up at the top of players I have featured the most in my career. But how will the Skyliner legend remember me best?’ I answered every question you ever asked me Miles and it was many. No matter if I was in Germany or in the States you would call me. Even if I replied back late at times, I always answered you. You know I have a lot of love for you’, stressed Quantez Robertson. But is this the complete end of Miles and Tez and basketball articles? No it’s not. I’m not giving up on my Miles Basketball minutes with Quantez Robertson. He may not be playing anymore, but I will always find something interesting to talk with him about. If we don’t hear anything about the Mike Mo and Tez comedy show, then I will have to get the ball rolling. At the latest during the dog days of summer, I will check in with Tez and pester him with questions. But he is used to it and I’m sure we will talk again. Thanks Tez for 14 years of sweet basketball memories.

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