After Three Years Playing In The Canadian NBL League Jarryn Skeete Is Ready To Make The Jump Overseas

Jarryn Skeete is a 26 year old 190cm guard from Canada that has three years of professional experience having played in the Canadian NBL league with teams Cape Breton Highlanders averaging 7.0ppg, 2.4rpg, 2.6apg, FGP: 44.0%, 3PT: 39.6%, FT: 86.2%, the Windsor Express averaging 5.1ppg, 1.5rpg, 1.9apg, FGP: 45.6%, 3PT: 40.6%, FT: 73.0% and the St. John’s Edge averaging 4.7ppg, 1.7rpg, 1.9apg. He began his basketball career at Wasatch Academy an dthen played 122 NCAA games with The University of Buffalo (NCAA) from 2012-2016. In his senior year he played 35 games averaging 7.9ppg, 3.2rpg, 2.2apg, FGP: 28.9%, 3PT: 33.0%, FT: 70.2%. He spoke to about his basketball career. 

Thanks Jarryn for talking to Where are you at the moment and how is 

I’m at a good place in life. I’m at home spending time with family. This is the first time in years where I’ve been able to enjoy the festivities with my loved ones and people I care about. Life is treating me pretty good because I don’t have any complaints.

Christmas is around the corner. Will you be doing anything special for Christmas and what is your fondest X-mas memory?

Just planning to hangout and catch up with friends and family that I haven’t been able to see over the past few years, since I’ve been so heavily involved with basketball. My fondest Christmas memory would have to be two years ago, when I started playing pro, and I was able to take the money that I was paid and buy everyone Christmas gifts. It felt good to spend my own money on the people I care about.

You have played three professional years in Canada and currently are without a team. What do you feel has hindered you at the moment of being without a team. Was it more a lack of offers or just not the right situation?

I would definitely say that the right opportunity hasn’t presented itself this year. I had a few offers but timing is everything and I know that I’ll find the right team. 

How tough has it been the last months not playing and seeing your friends all playing somewhere. What has kept you most positive?

It’s never tough. Everybody has their own situations and I’m always happy for my friends and former teammates to be doing their thing. I’m a very happy and motivated person and still go to the gym everyday to stay ready for when my opportunity presents itself. I’ve been able to stay positive because I know that there are so many different platforms, leagues and avenues out there to keep playing the game I love, and I believe everything happens for a reason.

Is there any particular reason why you played in Canada in your first three professional seasons? Did you attempt to land a team overseas?

Fresh out of college I had an opportunity to play in Serbia but it didn’t make sense at the time. What did make sense was being able to stay home, play in my home country, be able to spend time with my daughter and develop myself so that when the right opportunity presents itself, I’m ready to make that jump overseas.

You didn’t put up staggering stats in your first two professional seasons due to a lack of minutes on winning teams. However, when you received minutes, you always produced. Do you believe like that may have had an effect on you getting proper options?

I definitely feel like that’s part of it, because a big part of the game is stat based. However, I’m a proven winner, I’m consistent and whenever I’m given the minutes and the chance to show what I can do, I step up where my team needs me. 

Let’s talk about your game. How would you describe your game and if you had to compare your game to an NBA player, who would best fit the description?

I think I’m a versatile combo guard, who can shoot and stretch the defense. But, at the same time, I use my point-guard IQ to get my teammates open and run the game at my pace. The NBA player I would compare myself most to is a mix of Jason Kidd and D Will because my ability to read the floor and keep defenses honest with my ability to shoot from anywhere.

You haven’t averaged double figures as a professional yet, but once you received consistent minutes you were able to do so. Talk a little about your strengths as a player and on what areas of your game that you continue to work on?

My biggest strength is my IQ for the game, my size for my position, my leadership skills in getting everyone involved in the game, and my ability to shoot/score when my team needs me. I feel like there are always new things that need to be worked on, but the most important to me at this time is getting stronger and pushing myself to play outside of my comfort zone. 

Talk a little about the NBL league. It seems to have continued to develop well in the last 10 years as very talented guys play in the league. The scores almost seem higher than in the NBA. How important is defense in this league?

I think this league has a tremendous amount of potential due to the high level of import players. You don’t see many leagues that have that many Americans coming from such high levels of basketball backgrounds. The scores are definitely high but I feel like that’s due to the skill of the players and the length of the quarters since it’s NBA style 4, 12-minute quarters. Defense is very important but I think the physicality of the players is what separates most teams from one another.

Last season you played for the St. John’s Edge (NBL Canada) reaching the league final playing 49 games: In the finals you received more minutes averaging 13.5ppg, 5rpg, 3apg. 42% 3pt 50% Fg How special was this season playing for a strong club and how did it feel to finally get more minutes and play well, but not get the team result you wanted? 

St. John’s was a very special club to play for in a very special city. I definitely enjoyed the way the fans embraced the team and supported us night in and night out. Of course it’s always fun to win, but even more fun when you’re playing with a group of guys who like each other. Losing the finals wasn’t something I enjoyed but it was a learning experience and I was happy to be able to play well when given the opportunity to show what I could do. 

How special were games 5 and 6 against the KW Titans in the semi-Finals? You had two very strong games in game 5 (21 13 & 5 ast ) and 6 (13 9 & 9).

Both games were a lot of fun and I love playing in game that mean something with that type of playoff atmosphere. Like I mentioned, I was very happy when I was given the opportunity and I could seize the moment. My teammates and my coach believed in me and I was able to go out there and do my thing. I feel like with my size and my position, I’m able to impact the game in many different ways. This series made me realize that grabbing defensive rebounds can help me get myself going.

You had limited minutes in the first half of the season, but they really increased in the second half especially in the last 18 games. Talk a little about the season and why your minutes were so up and down.

When you’re playing on a winning team with veterans, sometimes it’s hard to get the minutes you want. But that’s where you become a good teammate, be happy for others’ success, stay positive, and be ready for when your number is called on so that you make the most of your opportunity when you get it.

How cool was it playing with big baby Glen Davis who didn’t play professional basketball from 2014-2018? How much of the old big baby is he still?

It was a great experience. I definitely learned a lot of things playing with an NBA champion, which is something most people may not get the opportunity to do. That said, I soaked up as much knowledge as I could over the season. Him being close with a point-guard like Rondo, he was able to teach me a lot of different things about aspects of the game I’d never thought of as much. I think he’s pretty much the same, he’s just aged a little bit. But his basketball IQ is through the roof! 

What did you appreciate most about his presence and did he tell any stories from his old days with the Boston Celtics?

I appreciated how genuine he was, his willingness to teach and his confidence in us. He told me many stories, not just from the Boston Celtics, but from his entire NBA career.

What kind of relationship did you have with Desmond Lee who you were teammates for both years? He is a guy that began in JUCO and is still looking to work his way up to higher leagues. Was he like a role model for you?

Dez and I still have a great relationship. We immediately got along and understood each other very well. We’ve both helped each other grow as players and he’s like a big brother to me.

In your second professional season you played with the St Johns Edge (NBL Canada) playing 45 games averaging 5.1ppg, 1.5rpg, 1.9apg, FGP: 45.6%, 3PT: 40.6%, FT: 73.0%, but your numbers increased when you started the last 12 games of the season going into the playoffs. You played with two real old veterans with Carl English and Ransford Brempong. How vital were these two guys for your early development?

I became close with both Carl and Ransford and respect them not only as athletes but as former national players who represent our country on the Olympic stage. They both told me believe in yourself, confidence and taking care of your body will take you a long way.

Both of those guys had long careers in Europe. How hungry are you to get over to Europe. Your game could take on a very different development once you play in structured leagues where defense is played. 

Yes, they both had impressionable careers in Europe. I’m very hungry, but I know my game will fit the European style. Yes, I’m always open to new development in my game. I know it’s a lot harder to score in Europe but I know my shot can help stretch the defense, which will open the floor for myself and teammates.

In your rookie season you played with the : Cape Breton Highlanders (NBL) playing 22 games averaging 7.0ppg, 2.4rpg, 2.6apg, FGP: 44.0%, 3PT: 39.6%, FT: 86.2%. You seem to come out of your shell in the second half of the season. What was the biggest adjustment you had to make coming from the NCAA?

My biggest adjustment was the speed and physicality of the game, and realizing that you have to always be professional and sometimes wait until your number is called. 

You began your career in 2012 with the university of Buffalo and played until 2016 playing a total of 122 NCAA games. Please talk how key it was for your game playing for 3 different coaches and how each coach helped you?

It was a very interesting experience. Every coach had a different way of shaping me as a player and my knowledge for the game. I’m very grateful to have been able to play in so many games. Coach Hurley really helped me develop and sharpen my guard skills, and showed me what it takes to win at the college level. 

You had many special NCAA games, but how special was your 18 point game against Akron that broke their 18 game winning streak?

It was very special. Not only because I performed well as a freshman but because we got the win and beat our rival in the process.

As a sophomore you moved to shooting guard. How did this season help your game and become a more versatile guard?

It helped me expand my game to not only score when I’m playing point guard, but to find ways to score off the ball and use my shot to space the floor and get teammates open.

You won the MAC tournament in 2015 and 2016. Which title was the sweetest?

There’s nothing sweeter than the first time. But number two was a lot of fun because it was my senior year.

In your junior year you lost to powerhouse Kentucky 71-52, but led all scorers playing against future NBA players like Devin Booker, Tyler Ulis, Dakari Johnson, Karl Anthony Towns, the Harrison brothers, Willy Cauley-Stein and Trey Lyles. When you look back at that do you feel like you can play with anyone?

Yes, I feel like I can play with anyone but that comes from the work you put in when no ones watching and respecting your opponent.

Early in your career you were teammates with Tony Watson and Corey Raley-Ross who both played in Germany. What memories do you have of these two players. How much influence did their overall presence have on your early development?

I have too many memories to name but they were both great teammates and like older brothers to me. They definitely had an influence on my early development and showed me the ropes when coming in as a freshman.

Who won a one on one in practice you or Shannon Evans?

We never kept track. But we battled every day and made each other better. We’re still close to this day and I’m so happy to see him doing well.

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

I played against many different players who are now in the NBA, but I’d have to say Devin Booker, Brandon Ingram or Alex Caruso.

Please name your 5 best teammates of all-time?

Naz Long, Carl English, Andrew Wiggins, Anthony Bennett and Tyler Ennis.

If you had to construct your very own NBA Rushmore which 4 heads past or present would you take?

MJ, Lebron James, Shaq and Magic. 

What is your personal opinion of the never ending debate of who is the greatest of all-time Michael Jordan or Lebron James?

I hope one day he passes him, but I have to go with Michael. 

What was the last movie that you saw?

The Joker.

Thanks Jarryn for the chat. 

Cameron Jackson(MHP Riesen Ludwigsburg) Is A Player That Can Affect The Game In Any Way

Cameron Jackson is a 23 year old 203cm forward from Winchester, Virginia that is playing his rookie season in Germany. He began the season with the Syntainics MBC where he averaged 7,6ppg, 3,4rpg,1,0apg and 1,3spg. He recently joined the MHP Riesen Luudwigsburg. He began his basketball career at John Handley High School and then played at Wofford (NCAA) from 2014-2019 playing a total of 137 games and as a senior played 35 games averaging 14.5ppg, 7.6rpg, 2.8apg, 1.5spg, 1.0bpg, FGP: 58.4%, 3PT: 40.0%, FT: 61.6%. He spoke to about basketball last summer before joining the Syntainics MBC.

Cameron thanks for talking to How did you experience your first transfer summer? Did you have sufficient offers coming out of school?

Yes, I received plenty of offers but I was happy with the Deal that MBC gave me and was excited to sign with them.

You signed your first professional contract with BBL team Syntainics MBC. What do you know in general about the country Germany and it’s basketball? Have you had friends or former opponents play here?

There is one player that is from Wofford that I know of that has played in the BBL. I took German classes in school so I have some basic knowledge of the country.

How blessed do you feel having this rookie opportunity with the Syntainics? Only a few Wofford players have played in Germany and only two guys in the BBL with Mike Lenzly and Brad Loesing. Did you talk to any of these guys to get some feedback about what will be awaiting you?

I am extremely appreciative of the opportunity that I have been given by Syntainitcs. I can’t wait to get over there. To be in this league my first year is a dream come true. I have not talked to either of the former Wofford players but I have met some people on my travels this summer and they have given me some insight. 

Your only the second player from your home town Winchester to have made it as a professional player in Europe. The other is ex NBA player Erik Green. Is he like a role model for you and have you met him before in the gym or playground?

Yes, he has set the bar very high and I have looked at his career in college and the pros. I actually ran into him at the gym a week ago and he gave me some advice about what it’s like being a pro. I plan to reach out to him a little more as I go

It is a huge compliment when an easyCRedit BBL team takes a rookie. The Syntainics are very high on your abilities especially head coach Wojceich Kaminsky. What was the deciding factor that allowed you to sign with this team?

I was honored by the interest that they gave me. After talking to coach Kaminsky, it seemed like he knew my game well and thought that I could help his team win games. It is also like you said too as a rookie there is no way that I could refuse an offer like this.

Let’s talk about your game. You’re a 203cm forward that can do a lot on the court. If you had to compare your game to an NBA player who would best fit the description best?

I like to watch a lot of Al Horford and Paul Millsap. They both do a lot of great things for their respective teams. They are mobile skilled guys that I have tried to watch for some years.

You’re a forward, but it seems like the German club has you penciled in as the center. Did you play much center at Wofford? How much of a challenge is this for you?

I played the Center at Wofford so it’s nothing that I’m not used to. I usually guard the other teams center so this will be a lot like that, obviously the competition will be much better though.

You’re a very ambitious and aggressive defender. It seemed like you really picked up your defensive game in your fourth season at Wofford. How much pride do you take on the defensive end and what do you need to still do to be able to make the next step as a defender at the professional level?

I need to be a smarter defender at the next level, my ambition sometimes got the best of me and that cannot happen at the next level. As far as at Wofford, defense is a huge part of what the coaches put a lot of importance on defense

You only took 27 three’s in your five years at Wofford. Do you see developing your three more in the next years as a professional player?

Yes, I plan to shoot more if my team needs and wants it. I didn’t shoot a lot mainly because my team was surrounded with shooters so there was never much need for me to do that. It is a part of my game that I am taking very serious though in trying to improve into a good enough shooter to help any team that I am on to use that part of my game.

You’re a guy that can fill the stat sheet with ease, but what do you feel is a hidden strength in your game that doesn’t get noticed right away?

I feel like it proves that I can help a team in many ways. I like to try to affect the game in any way possible and I believe that this is easy to be looked over when a lot of times people look at points only.

On what aspects of your game are you working on this summer to be fully prepared for your rookie season in Germany?

I am working on being as mobile as possible for this season and being as healthy as possible for when I get there. I don’t know much but I know that I have to take care of my body as much as possible.

You played at Wofford (NCAA) from 2014-2019. How vital was it in your basketball development to have had the Wofford experience for five years instead of four years?

Wofford was super important for me they helped me to find out how hard you have to play at the college level to be successful and to push through it all to get what I need out of each season.

You won the SoCon tournament as a freshman and as a fifth year senior. Talk about both titles and how special and different each one was for you?

They felt extremely different though both are extremely cool to be a part of. My first year I was a role player and a freshman as the team was led by some great players. My last season I was one of the upperclassmen so it meant a little bit more to me than the first one.

As a freshman you lost 85-54 to Duke (NCAA) scoring 4 points and 3 rebounds in 7 minutes. Do you have any memories of that game? Duke had a starting 5 of guys that all would go to the NBA like Jahlil Okafor, Tyus Jones, Justise Winslow, Quinn Cook and Amile Jefferson. Were you in awe of playing against Duke or did you have your emotions under control?

I had my emotions completely under control but. I did notice how good Jahlil was. He made the game look pretty easy as he was a freshman. It is cool to see where those guys are now in their careers now.

How special was the 2019 NCAA run? Talk about playing powerhouse Kentucky and giving all you had and just being nipped 62-56. What should the team have done better in the last minutes?

This season was extremely special because this team loved to be around each other and just about every minute of the season was fun. As far as the Kentucky game I think if a couple of shots fell then we would have one the game. The ball didn’t bounce our way though and that is just how it happens some time.

How do you have the battle with Reid Travis in your game in the NCAA in your memories. Does being able to compete with him give you added self confidence that you go up the basketball ladder I the next years and be able to compete at even higher levels than where you are now?

It was cool to play against Reid Travis for a second time in my career. The first time we played he absolutely dominated the matchup. This time I feel like I held my own though. So, it was cool to see how far I had come in 5 years. Things like that help me to see where was and can get to as I continue to progress as a player.

How did head coach Mike Young prepare and groom you best for a professional basketball career?

He taught me what it means to work hard and to never give up. He allowed me to play a game that I am comfortable with at Wofford to propel me into success.

Who won a one on one in practice you or Chevez Goodwin?

Chevy and I battled in practice but most days we didn’t even guard each other. He had a lot of growth over this past season though. He’ll have a great season next year.

Who was the toughest opponent that you played in the NCAA that is in the NBA or in Europe now

I think that the best player that I’ve played against is Marcus Thornton

Please list your five best teammates of all-time?

Fletcher Magee
Lee Skinner
Karl Cochran
Eric Garcia
Keve Aluma

Please name your personal own NBA Rushmore. Which four heads would you pick past or present for your list?

Shaq, MJ, Kobe, Dr J

What is your personal opinion of the never ending debate of who is the greatest of all-time Michael Jordan or Lebron James?

I think that is hard for me because I was not able to see MJ play as much as Lebron but I do think that MJ is better. I’m not a big fan of this debate though because they are in different eras.

What was the last movie that you saw?

Spiderman Far from Home

Thanks Cameron for the chat.

Kendale Mccullum(Uni Baskets) Is Focusing On Shooting Three´s Off The Bounce To Bring His Game To Another Level

Kendale McCullum is a 185cm guard from Elgin, Illinois that is playing his rookie season in Germany with the Uni Baskets Paderborn (Germany-ProA). The Uni Baskets Paderborn have had many very talented point guards in the last years, but none better than Kendale Muccullum. At the moment he is averaging 17,5ppg, 5,6rpg, 6,9apg and 3,0spg and flirting with a playoff spot. He has had an enormous impact on the success of the club as he is fourth best scorer in the league and leading the league in assists and steals.He also is shooting a very respectable 40% from outside. He registered a rare triple double against Schwenningen with 22 points, 10 rebounds and 13 assists. He began his basketball career at Larkin High School and then played three seasons at Wisconsin Parkside (NCAA2) playing 73 games. In his last two seasons there he averaged 15.0ppg, 5.0rpg, 5.1apg, 2.1spg, FGP: 49.6%, 3PT: 41.1%, FT: 76.7% and 15.5ppg, 4.9rpg, 6.2apg, 2.7spg, FGP: 53.3%, 3PT: 30.4%, FT: 76.4%. He played his last season of college ball at Lewis (NCAA2) playing 31 games averaging 16.4ppg, 5.5rpg, 6.3apg, 2.8spg, FGP: 52.1%, 3PT: 40.5%, FT: 80.2%. He spoke to eurobasket about his basketball career before he signed with the club last summer. 

Congrats Kendale on signing with German Pro A team Uni Baskets Paderborn. How did you experience your first summer transfer period. How blessed are you about having Heinrich Sports represent you? It isn’t so common that a D-2 player reach the Pro A?

Heinrich believed in my game from the beginning. He knew he could get me in a really good league where I could showcase my skill. 

What do you know in general about the country Germany and it’s basketball? Have you had ex teamamtes or friends play here besides the big man Zygimantas Riauka?

I’ve done a decent amount of research and I’ve talked to some guys who played in Germany. They all loved it. Said the people were amazing, fans were cheering loud at games, food is amazing and etc. I haven’t talked to Ziggy much since he left Parkside. But one guy I talk to a lot was Andy Mazurczak. He talked to me about how it was when he played in this league and that’s it’s a really good start for my rookie season. 

How excited are you to be playing Adam Eberhard this season who is playing for the MLP Academics. Is there some revenge on your mind or did the exciting two wins with Lewis in your senior year erase that?

Adam and I became really good friends our senior year. He’s a really good dude and a competitor. So am I! We talk almost everyday and we’re both excited for each other and can’t wait to go against each other. So, there’s no revenge at all, more just having fun, competing with your brother and having bragging rights. 

You have a connection to another guy from Elgin where you come from. His name is Marcus Smallwood who played many years in Germany including the Pro A and belonged to the best big men. He lives in Chicago now, but over the years did you ever hear about him? Now that your playing in the Pro A, could a guy like that be like a role model for you?

I actually never heard of him before.. which is surprising to me. One of my role models is Andy Mazurczak! He taught me a lot the two years we spent together at Parkside. So, I reached out to him about the Pro A league. Also, had some conversations with Milosh Pulo! He played 11 years in this league. 

The Uni Baskets Paderborn are an ambitious Pro A team that once played in the BBL and haven’t reached the playoffs in a while. How focused and ready are you to lead this team to the playoffs?

We’re just going take it day by day and game by game and see what happens. I believe we have some really good talent on our team, we have a new coaching staff coming in. So we have the potential to be a threat in this league. There’s also other teams in the league with great talent and good coaching staff. So, we’ll see what happens. 

The Uni Baskets management is very convinced of your abilities especially head coach Steve Esterkamp who once helped Paderborn reach the BBL with 50 wins in a row 14 years ago. What were the main reasons for joining this club?

I met with coach Esterkamp and we had a great dialogue. We both dissected my game and he sees what I see. He also speaks really good English so that’s good for me. I related this club to Parkside! To whereas I like playing for teams that get no respect because it makes you play harder every game and when you accomplish things people don’t think you can is an amazing feeling. I heard the city of Paderborn isn’t too big but isn’t too small. Which is what I like, think it will help me adjust faster in a smaller city! It’s a really good league to start my career in, especially if I want to move up. 

Let’s talk about your game. You’re an aggressive 185cm point guard that can fill up the stat sheet like a Russell Westbrook. If you had to compare your game to an NBA player who would best fit the description?

I would say my stats are more like Russell but I think my game is very similar to Kyrie Irving! I study film on him every day and try his moves when I’m training and in games. 

Coach Steve Esterkamp really likes your will and determination. Are these qualities something that have been developed and grown on account of having played in the NCAA 2? How big is your chip on your shoulder to keep proving yourself that you are a lot better player than in the division you played at?

People don’t understand how good D2 basketball is. Some schools could beat some low major D1 schools. I think every D2 player plays with a chip on the shoulder. I think playing D2 did have an positive impact on me having that will and determination. But it also, started back in high school and during AAU season. A lot of politics with recruiting but it’s whatever. I know I could’ve been a mid-major d1 player, others coaches know that, my teammates know that and etc. but I’m glad I got to play D2 because I’m still playing Pro basketball at the end of the day and got my degree so that’s all that matters. Just a different route for me to get here. 

You can score, rebound, get assists and get steals. What other qualities do you have in your game that fans in Germany will see this season?

I think the passion and energy that i play with the fans will love! Sprinting over to pick up at teammate and those types of literally things. 

Getting steals isn’t everything about being a great defender. What other qualities do you have on the defensive end that don’t make you an above average defender, but a very good defender?

I play defense with pride! So, I’m playing a game with myself in my head. I never try to be that guy who gets beat every time. It happens because I’m usually guarding the best player but I never let someone bully me or say they ‘killed me’. I think having that mentality of ‘okay, I’m not letting you get by me’ is what helps me be an above average defender. 

You were so close to achieving a few triple doubles in your NCAA 2 career and as always filled up the stat sheet, but what do you feel has been missing for you to gain one?

I never really looked or asked during games about my stats. Only stat that I checked for were Turnovers. There were a few times where someone would say ‘hey you need 2 more rebounds to have a triple double’ and I would try too hard and not get them haha.. other times we were usually up by a lot and games would get a little out of hand and I’d tell coach to pull me. 

You shot over 40% twice from outside in the NCAA 2? How content are you with your shot and what are your goals to continuing to be a dangerous shooter at the pro ranks?

The biggest thing with me is having confidence. I know I can shoot the ball. I just have to take the shots and have confidence when shooting. I put the work in everyday, just got to knock them down with confidence. One thing I’m focusing more on is shooting 3’s off the bounce. I think once I get the hang of that, my game will be at another level. 

You’re a player that can do so many things on the court, but what do you feel is a hidden strength in your game that still is off the radar for many?

I think my leadership of my game is still of the radar a little bit. My team knows I’m a good leader, but I don’t think others see that yet. Which is fine! I would also say, my shooting ability. Like I shot 52%FG and 40%3pt. But this year people will see that ability. 

You played three years at Wisconsin Parkside (NCAA2). You had a tough freshman season where you averaged 4.7ppg, 2.7rpg, 1.8apg, 1.3spg in 14 minutes and in your sophomore season averaged 15.0ppg, 5.0rpg, 5.1apg, 2.1spg, FGP: 49.6%, 3PT: 41.1%, FT: 76.7% in 31 minutes. Despite not playing much as a freshman, how important was that season for your game getting a feel for the NCAA 2?

I knew coming in my freshman year I wasn’t going to play much. It was going to be just getting my feet wet and next season adding more to my plate. I was playing behind Andy who was one of the best guards in the league. Having Andy helped me through my freshman year of the rough times. I learned a lot from him that year by watching and seeing how he controlled the tempo of the game. How he was a leader and more. That helped me make an impact my sophomore season. 

You played together with the double double beast Zygimantas Riauka as a freshman. What memories do you have of him as a player? What was your fondest memory with him?

My freshman year, he was like my big brother. We were together a lot off the court. He sprained his ankle the day before a game. And he played the next day on a sprained ankle and still got a double double. Guy is a true beast and competitor. 

You had two very good season at Wisconsin-Parkside, but then left for Lewis. What were the main reasons for making his change?

Main reasons for the change was because of all the violations the athletic department were receiving! I didn’t want any part of it! Also, talked to some people and said it would be best for me to leave. I think it worked out. Trost allowed me to have freedom and do what I wanted. If I messed up, of course I would get yelled at and that’s how it should be. The Lewis offense was my type of play style, all ball screens and a 4 out 1 in constant motion. At Parkside, it was more a system there. We were successful with it don’t get me wrong. We won a lot of games, conference champs and made the tournament. But it wasn’t truly my play style. 

You had many great games at Wisconsin-Parkkside, but how memorable was your 30/7/5/5 game in the 107-106 victory over Quincy?

That whole weekend was memorable! But that Quincy game I’d never forget. We where not supposed to win that game. Quincy missed 6 or 7 free throws down the stretch and it allowed us to take them to overtime. That’s when Andy and I took over. But at that moment, I knew I had a chance to really be good in this league and play professional basketball. 

How tough was it losing to top school Bellarmine twice in your last two games at Wisconsin-Parkside) What will you remember most from that weekend?

I did not expect that to be my last game at Parkside. We were so close and then we’d make a mistake and they would go on a run. I was telling the guys ‘we’re going get them next year’. I mean that next year they did beat them at Parkside. So I wasn’t wrong, just wasn’t a part of it. 

You had another strong season with Lewis (NCAA2) averaging 31 games: 16.4ppg, 5.5rpg, 6.3apg, 2.8spg, FGP: 52.1%, 3PT: 40.5%, FT: 80.2%. How do you feel did your game develop further as a senior?

I think having that year off to expand my game, get stronger and rest my body had a big impact on it. I think me being in a system where my skill can be shown helped as well. All my stats and percentages went it up. And it showed with all the accolades I received and the team achievements. 

How did Lewis head coach Scott Trost give you that last push in helping you be groomed and prepared for a professional basketball career?

Trost saw me play once when I was at Parkside and we went against each other. But once he saw me every day in practice and in games, he knew I could play pro and he helped me prepare for that. Every day, I was working on things I’d have to do professionally. Some things I may not be able to get away with. He pushed me every day to be the best player in the gym. During practice and in games. And I thank him for that. 

Who won a one on one in practice you of Adam Pischke?

Not going to lie, but the kid is a walking bucket. He’s not the biggest kid on the court but he’s going to guard you and he’s going to score on you. We never played one on one. Unless it was during a one on one drill in practice. He’d score on me, I’d score on him. We never kept track. I only play One on one with Anthony D’Avanzo because he thinks he can guard me. We’re actually tied 5-5 in the series

Who has been the toughest player that you battled in the NCAA that is in the NBA or in Europe?

Jordan Loyd was a bucket machine. He dominated us every time we played them. 

Please list your five best teammates of all-time?

I have to give you six haha Andy Mazurczak, Chip Flanigan, Adam Pischke, Anthony D’Avanzo, Frank Vukaj and Donovan Oliver

Please name your personal own NBA Rushmore. Which four heads would you pick past or present for your list?

This is tough! I’m picking LeBron James, Luka Doncic, Wilt Chamberlain, Kobe Bryant 

What is your personal opinion of the never ending debate of who is the greatest of all-time Michael Jordan or Lebron James?

I think they both are phenomenal players and glad to see the LeBron James Era. I never saw the MJ era so I can’t pick. Based off the sports analysis and what I’ve seen LeBron James do on the court, I’m picking LeBron James. 

What was the last movie that you saw?

Netflix original, it’s called Point Blank. Fantastic movie, highly recommend it. Especially, if you like action movies. 

Thanks Kendale for the chat.

The Miles Basketball Minute: The Fraport Skyliners Are A Lot Better Than Their Record And Finally Need To Produce Wins

It is December 24th Christmas Eve in the States and in Germany it´s the night to open the presents something that Americans that have balled in Europe for years have either gotten used to or not. Just how festive this Christmas will be for Adam Waleskowski will depend how quickly he can get the last tough Frankfurt loss of his mind. It has been less than 48 hours since the bitter 82-81 loss of the Fraport Skyliners against the Basketball Lowen Braunschweig and any loss is difficult to digest, but obviously the tight ones are harder than others. There were a few tragic hero´s in this 45 minute battle, but none more unfortunate than Adam Waleskowski. After the heartbreaking loss, I was ready to give my usual post game interview with him, but he actually denied me. At first I was perplexed, but then I remembered the last seconds of the game and understood. But after about 5 minutes and a few photos with sponsors, he returned a bit more up beat and answered my questions, but I knew deep down this would be a tough loss to forget. It is no secret that dog´s need to have their walks and with Waleskowski´s dog Barry it´s no different, but it would be interesting to know just how many times he had to get out in the last two days to just think and reflect on the last loss. With 13 seconds remaining in overtime and the Fraport Skyliners down 82-81, they had the opportunity to win the game just like in regular time, but couldn´t pull it out. Frankfurt had two golden chances and surprisingly missed. Waleskowski had a left handed hook shot. He was so close to the basket, it seemed like he was almost sitting on the rim, but the shot just didn´t want to fall. The ball then squirmed out to Richard Freudenberg who was the other tragic hero and he missed an off balance open three and the game ended with another loss for the 2016 Fiba Europe Cup winner. “I had no idea how much time was left. I rushed myself. I make that shot 9/10 times. I couldn´t hit anything today”, expressed Adam Waleskowski. Even a guy like new Skyliner Joe Rahon who has been with the team only a few weeks had that 100% confidence in both guys making the shots and was perplexed after the loss. “You would think that when Waleskowski gets a left handed hook shot near the basket and Freudenberg gets an open three that at least one would fall”, warned Joe Rahon. But that has been the story of the Fraport Skyliners this season. They are a lot better than their record, but finally need to produce wins.

            One thing that has really surprised me has been the early negativity and criticism that has been set upon the Fraport Skyliners. If I look at the standings, I see an unsatisfying 4-7 record and 13 place, but so what. The team is only two wins away from the last playoff spot. I wonder what would be going on in the Frankfurt basketball world, if Frankfurt had the Telekom Baskets Bonn 15th spot and 2-8 record. Ok even for me that means nothing. The whole league is so tight from 6-18 that I am sure there will still be some big surprises this season and come May 2020 there will be a lot of juggling having happened in the BBL standings. I have discussed this fact before this season and will repeat myself, but I have to because the wins that should have been and didn´t happen just continue to arise. The Fraport Skyliners should have won in Bonn, should have upset FC Bayern Munich at home, should have beat Wurzburg on the road and won at home against Braunschweig. If that had happened where would the club be now? They would have an 8-3 record and be in fourth place and all would be normal and happy in Frankfurt Mainhatten. But that is how basketball works. A team doesn´t always get the breaks. A missed rebound, loose ball, shot or foul can cost a club a game and that has been crucial for the team not having the success they should have had. But you can´t look back on these tough losses, but stay positive and look ahead and just continue to work hard and get better. That is what Gordon Herbert has always said and he proved in the past that when his club started off slow, he was mostly able to get the best from his players the rest of the way and get better. This has to be a big focus of head coach Sebastian Gleim, but he knows that.

            On paper the Fraport Skyliners are a playoff team and I feel that on the court they can and will be. Obviously they have had a lot of misfortune with injuries and the departure of Anthony Hickey who was on a good way in pre-season making the transition to the regular season and then got injured. Where would the club be today had he not gotten injured? I honestly feel that they would have had at least 2 wins more. Akeem Vargas has missed two games and that lock down defender was so much needed in the game against Braunschweig. How successful would Trevor Releford have been had Vargas defended him on a regular basis? Releford had a great game, but also had some uncontested shots. And one aspect that is known, but really not mentioned enough is the Niklas Kiel misfortune. The poor guy was on a good way in his development, but then experienced one of three concussions and now his career seems in doubt. If the club had had Kiel last season healthy and strong, they probably would have made the playoffs and this season wouldn´t be in 13th place. So many what if´s something that is usually mentioned when a team is losing.

            Just when looking at the current roster, you have a 12 man roster that can compete with many other teams that are currently in the playoff race. Lamont Jones is a deadly scorer and when he is on a top 5 scorer in the BBL, Leon Kratzer is another one of countless German players that have developed extremely well with the Skyliners and one of the top German big men in the BBL at this moment. He still misses to much at close range, but when he really refines that, he will be truly scary. No disrespect to the real Mr Skyliner Pascal Roeller, but the current Mr Skyliner is the future BBL legend Quantez Robertson. With Tez you know what you get. 40 minutes of his personal hell on the court filling the stat sheet and being able to make an instant impact at both ends of the court. He may not be in his prime anymore, but he is still a damn good player that any BBL team would love to have on their team. Richard Freudenberg has been the sunny boy that maybe had too much sun and forgot his sunglasses which has hindered his play and development in the first two seasons, but this season he stayed away from the sun and his game has been getting better. He has scored in double figures in 4 of the last 6 games and is shooting 50% from the parking lot. His game confidence is growing and he will continue to be an important piece to the puzzle and success in the next months. Only his 48% free throw percentage remains a mystery. Akeem Vargas has offensively been reborn. Coming into this season the highest he ever averaged in scoring in a BBL season was 5,4ppg in the 2014-2015 season with Alba Berlin. Currently he is averaging 9,3ppg and shooting an impressive 44% from downtown and has scored in double figures in 5 of 9 games. With him healthy the rest of the way this club is a playoff team.

            Shaquille Hines hasn´t been great or bad, but maybe played a bit under expectations. But sometimes that adjustment period takes longer than for other players. He showed that he could score in double figures in the NCAA, Greece and Sweden and at 7/4 in points and rebounds not as far from his 8/4 stats from Braunschweig last season. He could be more of a defensive factor, but important now will be that he gets healthy and returns back with vengence so he can make an impact on the court. I was really excited when the Skyliners got Adam Waleskowski. After covering him for 10 years with teams like BG Goettingen and the MHP Riesen Ludwigsburg, I would finally get to see him play live on a regular basis. The only problem is I´m seeing him play, but honestly not enough. I´m sure he isn´t happy about his 10 minutes per game. I personally would like to see him play somewhere in the vicinity of 15-20 minutes. The Ohio native still has game at age 37 and is giving the team good minutes. Obviously the Braunschweig game wasn´t a good one, but I´m sure he won´t have a game like that again. He will continue to be a fighter on the court and important mentor for guys like Freudenberg and Mcquaid. I have been a big fan of Matt Mcquaid from the start, but he hasn´t become that player that the club hoped he would yet. I have a lot of confidence in this kid. I love his game. He can shoot, play tough hard noised defense, has an incredible IQ and has athleticism in him. When you only get 13 minutes per game, you have to be very efficient and it´s tough to really stick out. He has his break out game against Bamberg and had 11 points against MBC and showed flashes of brilliance with 6 points in the loss against Braunschweig. I am confident that he will get more consistent. He needs the trust from coach Sebastian Gleim and build on his self confidence.

            Ex Bamberg Guard Daniel Schmidt and Marco Voeller have been little factors for the club. Schmidt who has won more BBL titles than the rest of the team has averaged only 6,8mpg while Voeller only 3,2mpg. Schmidt is capable of being a solid back up point guard, but really has produced below expectations while Voeller just hasn´t seen enough minutes to really be a factor. I would have liked to have seen young German Bruno Vrcic get into more than 3 games, but it has been refreshing to have seen 17 year old talented guard Len Schoormann already play 3 BBL games and slowly get adjusted to the BBL game. These two Germans have a big future ahead and the more experience that they get already this season the better. I believe Schoormann will have some more exciting moments this season as he continues to slowly make more of a name for himself in the German basketball community. That´s the Fraport Skyliners roster or is it? Oh I forgot a player. How could I forget Joe Rahon? He will be the key in the end if the Fraport Skyliners make the playoffs or not. I don´t say this often after seeing a guy play live only twice, but I love this guys game. He had a very good game against Braunschweig with 16 points, 4 rebounds, 7 dimes and 2 steals. It is amazing to see how quickly this guy has been integrated and really is playing as if he has been there from the start. But he is a true professional and a real floor general. He has a keen sense when to finish and when to find the open man. He showed in the NCAA that he could average 10,0ppg at two different schools Boston College and St Marys, but hasn´t at the pro level averaging 6,0ppg in Belgium and with Braunschweig. Frankfurt has enough potential scorers with Jones, Kratzer, Freudenberg, Mcquaid, Waleskowski, but the consistency with some guys just hasn´t been there. Rahon can be a scorer for this team if he has to, but being that dependable playmaker is more important which could get this team over the hump in the next months. I said it before the season that the Fraport Skyliners would reach the playoffs and still believe it now. Bearing any more crucial injuries to key players, I feel this goal can be reached. Obviously the defense continues to be a work in progress, but the club has defended a lot better in 3 of the last 4 games and just have to continue to get better in the Herbert manner. It isn´t the best of times currently for the Fraport Skyliners, but ending 2019 with a big win in Ludwigsburg could be the real turnaround for the team. Of course this is easier said than done. John Patrick has built a real winning culture this season, but it is a known fact in the BBL that no matter what season it is, clubs hate playing the Fraport Skyliners at home or on the road. Frankfurt will come back from the holiday season and give a spirited effort in Ludwigsburg. Waleskowski will return back to an old stomping ground and be gunning for a win and definitely wants good thoughts on his new year´s walk with dog Barry.

Jequan Lewis´s(PAOK Thessaloniki) Goal Is To Be Consistent And Lead His Team To Greater Heights

Jequan Lewis is a 24 year old 185cm point guard form Tennessee playing his third professional season and first with PAOK Thessaloniki (Greece-A1). Last season he played with the Goyang Orions (Korea-KBL) playing 16 games averaging 16.2ppg, 2.6rpg, 5.8apg, 1.4spg, 2FGP: 48.2%, 3FGP: 34.7%, FT: 80.6%, in Dec.’18 moved to GS Kymis (Greece-A1) playing 16 games averaging 12.8ppg, 2.3rpg, Assists-2 (5.7apg), Steals-3 (1.4spg), FGP: 48.9%, 3PT: 34.8%, FT: 78.9%. In his rookie season he played with the Wisconsin Herd (NBA G League) playing 49 games averaging 9.2ppg, 2.3rpg, 4.5apg, 1.5spg, FGP: 48.9%, 3PT: 39.4%, FT: 85.0%. He began his basketball career at Dickson County High School and then played at Virginia Commonwealth University (NCAA) from 2013-2017 playing a total of 141 NCAA games. In his senior campaign he played 35 games averaging 15.1ppg, 2.8rpg, 4.5apg, 1.7spg, FGP: 51.8%, 3PT: 36.7%, FT: 81.8%. He spoke to after a 85-83 Basketball Champions League win over the Telekom Baskets Bonn where he contributed 12 points, 5 rebounds and 8 assists.

Jequan thanks for talking to Is this your first time in Germany? What do you know in general about the country Germany and it’s basketball? 

Yes this is my first time here and I’ve always heard they had really good basketball here. 

Have you had any friends, former teammates or opponents ball in Germany? 

My teammate Aaron Best has played in Germany before and from a basketball stand point he loved it.

Your playing your first season with PAOK has been struggling in the Greek A league as well as in the Basketball Champions League. How much of an effect has the fact been that all 5 imports are new to the team? 

Were getting better and better each day, we’ve been through a lot so far this year but we getting it together! I expect big things from us!

What kind of experience has it been playing with PAOK that hasn’t won a title since 1999? For many they have the best basketball fans in Greece. What have you learned to appreciate the most from the experience? 

PAOK has the best fans I’ve seen in a while hands down, very passionate organization. 

How enjoyable has it been playing together with Adam Smith? Your both guards that are very good at creating for others and scoring. How do you compliment each other best? 

That’s my guy, he’s my shooter, we feed off of each other’s energy!

Even if you have been a professional now for some years how beneficial is it having an experienced veteran like Antwaine Wiggins? What do you believe has been the most important thing that you have picked up from his presence so far on and off the court? 

Wiggins is a great guy an great player on an off the court, he helps me with just the mental part of being overseas. 

You have played twice against Panathinaikos losing both times, but scored 12 points in your first ever game. Could those two teams that you played against have beat an NBA team? 

They are a great organization and I feel like they can compete in any league in the world 

Let’s talk about your game. You’re a 185cm point guard that can do very much on the court. If you had to compare your game to an NBA player who would best fit the description?

I try to play an get up an down like Westbrook 

You had a very good first season in Greece with GS Kymis (Greece-A1) playing 16 games averaging 12.8ppg, 2.3rpg, Assists-2 (5.7apg), Steals-3 (1.4spg), FGP: 48.9%, 3PT: 34.8%, FT: 78.9%. What is your personal goal for your game this season? Do you feel pressure to have to top that?

My goal is to just be consistent and lead my team to greater heights, a lot of doubters out there but I believe in my troops and what we can do! 

You have always been a good outside shooter. Where are you in your development as a shooter? Do you believe like you can be a 40% shooter from downtown? 

Absolutely, I will be 40% or maybe higher just have to take more and make more!

On what things are you working on most on your game as you continue to work yourself up the basketball ladder? 

Just reading the game in different ways, learning to pick my spots, and controlling tempo 

You began last season with the Goyang Orions (Korea-KBL) playing 16 games averaging 16.2ppg, 2.6rpg, 5.8apg, 1.4spg, 2FGP: 48.2%, 3FGP: 34.7%, FT: 80.6%. What was your wake up call to being a rookie overseas where you knew that you were very far away from home? 

Just realizing that it’s just basketball, no matter where I’m at just have to remember that I’m getting to play the sport I love which is basketball 

It really doesn’t matter who I talk with but anyone that has ever played with Darryl Monroe have had nothing but good things to say. In your first game there he just missed a triple double getting 9 assists. Is he a guy that you will remember in 10 years? 

Yea Darryl is my big bro forever

How key was your first season in Greece? You came in in mid season and despite the team not winning that much were able to make the best out of it?

It was big time to just get a glimpse of how it was playing Europe basketball. 

As a rookie you played with the Wisconsin Herd (NBA G League) playing 49 games averaging 9.2ppg, 2.3rpg, 4.5apg, 1.5spg, FGP: 48.9%, 3PT: 39.4%, FT: 85.0%. What kind of experience was it getting that first taste of how the NBA works?

It was fun and it just showed me what I needed to work on to get to the high levels! 

You had very solid stats as a senior at VCU and there have been guys in the past that have made the NBA with stats like yours or worse A good example is your ex teammate at VCU Briante Webber. Do you feel like you could play at the NBA level now with the added experience in Europe?

Yea I will definitely make it one day!

You had a massive 32 points in a G-League game against Long Island. Do you feel like you can get noticed like that o do you have to score something like 50 to have one or the other NBA GM take note? 

You just have to do what you do consistently and you will get noticed, not all about scoring. 

You had a stellar career at VCU. What was your fondest moment? Winning the Atlantic 10 title as a sophomore or reaching the NCAA tournament?

Definitely winning a championship! And of course advancing in the NCAA tournament 

Was beating Fordham, Richmond, Davidson and Dayton the best 4 days in your NCAA time?

It was probably the hardest 4 days, back to backs against great teams were tough 

You won a huge duel over Davidson and Jack Gibbs as you both scored 27 points. Where do rate that game as your most enjoyable in the NCAA? 

It was definitely one of the funniest, Jack was a great player and great match up! Very fun to compete against 

You played for two coaches at VCU with Shaka Smart and Will Wade. How did these two coaches groom and prepare you best for a professional basketball career?

Both played a huge role, Wade recruited me there before he left and Smart helped me grow as a point guard, much respect for both of them 

Who won a one on one in practice you or Briante Webber?

I lost count lol we went at it every single day! Going against him made it easy come game time 

Who is the toughest player that you battled in the NCAA that is in the NBA now or was? 

Probably Buddy Hield or Deandre Bembry, both really great players an hard match ups 

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

I tell you like I tell everyone else, they both dominated there eras!

Luka Doncic is tearing up the NBA at the moment. Is he a top 3 best player in the league now?

He is definitely top 5

What was the last movie that you saw?

Coach Carter

Thanks Dequan for the chat.

The Miles Basketball Christmas Minute With Curtis Hollis Volume 14

Curtis Hollis a 21 year old 198cm forward from Arlington, Texas that is playing his first season overseas and first in Germany with the Dragons Rhondorf currently averaging 22,0ppg,8,4rpg,3,8apg and 3,2spg. He began his career at Mansfield Summit High School. In 2017-2018 he played with Hutchinson CC (JUCO) playing 34 games averaging 6.9ppg, 3.3rpg, 1.4apg, FGP: 50.0%, 3PT: 27.0%, FT: 66.3%. In 2018 he played in Lavar Ball’s new league with the Houston Ballers (JBL) playing 7 games: Score-5 (29.3ppg), 11.3rpg, 5.3apg, 2.6spg, FGP: 46.0%, 3PT: 21.2%, FT: 71.8%. He and I team up every week to talk basketball in the Miles basketball minute. This week it was a special Christmas edition.

Curtis thanks for talking to What does Christmas mean to you? What is the most important part of Christmas for you?

Christmas means a lot to me. Tied for my favorite holiday so it’s special!

You will be home for Christmas this season. How did you experience the pre Christmas experience in Germany?

I just got to chill with my teammates so that’s how I spent it.

Did you find any special presents for your family in Germany or will you do your x-Mas shopping at home?

My game jersey and my mom told me she wanted me to do something for her so that was cool!

On what particular thing are you looking most forward to Christmas this time as you are home with family and not in Germany?

Just being with my family is the most important thing. Hanging out with a few of my homies before I have to come back and get to work.

How does the Hollis family spend Christmas? Are there any special rituals that happen or is it just what other families also do?

Usually open up presents with each other then go to a family members house and hang there!

When you were a kid what was one of your first Christmas memories that is still with you today?

Honestly probably all of them. I always loved just being with my family, eating, & opening gifts.

What was your favorite toy as a child and are there any special presents that you are craving for this Christmas?

Man probably a power ranger thing. I use to love those haha.

If you had had the chance as a little kid to have sat on the lap of Shaq who was dressed as a Santa Claus what would you have wished for?

Probably to be in the NBA like him!

On what Christmas food will you indulge most on and what Christmas food did you love as a kid?

Macaroni, chicken, all those are major for me.

What is your favorite Christmas movie?

The polar express!

Thanks for the Christmas chat! Merry Christmas Curtis!

Trevor Releford Powers The Basketball Lowen Braunschweig Past The Fraport Skyliners 82-81

You can never make it right for any player when it comes to just how many games a team should play per week. Euroleague teams will have 2-3 games per week, while teams playing in the other international competitions mostly 2 games. Players of these teams will complain that it´s too much and not enough recovery time, but then again teams that didn´t make the playoffs the season before will mostly not play more than one game per week, which adds up to 4 per month. NBA players at least can travel in style in private jets and live in the best hotels, but they also have the tear and wear of playing12-16 games per month. But what happens in a player´s mind when they played only 1 game in the whole month? Well the player either totally gets sick of practice or gets used to the little competition. Well this happened to the Fraport Skyliners. With the way their schedule worked this season, they had one game from the period of November 23rd to December 22nd. “It´s tough having to always practice and stay focused for just 1 game. In practice it is always the same competition”, added ex BG Goettingen forward Adam Waleskowski. The good news for the 4-6 team was that they made the most of it and played a strong game 2 weeks ago defeating the Crailsheim Merlins that surprisingly began the season on fire winning their first 5 games in a row. Even with Skyliner legend Quantez Robertson being the ultimate warrior and competitor who would play 40 minutes each game if he could, surely didn´t mind the down time for his body. It was finally time to get back on the floor against the Basketball Lowen Braunschweig who also started the season with a bang winning four of their first five games, but since were riding a bitter 4 game losing streak. The guests also had a new meeting with ex player Joe Rahon who had played with them last season and recently joined the Fraport Skyliners. It was another one of those exciting games that went down to the wire with the game tied, Frankfurt had it in their hands, but 2 misses in the last seconds cost them the win losing 82-81. After the bitter loss new Skyliner Joe Rahon who had a strong game scoring 16 points and organizing the Frankfurt game well reflected on the tough loss. “We knew that they were a good offensive team. We played good defense allowing only 27 points in the first half. But in the second half, they started to make shots, Eatherton got going and their zone hurt us. This was a heart breaker loss. It will hurt for a few days, but we will bounce back”, stated Fraport Skyliner guard Joe Rahon. The Basketball Lowen Braunschweig needed a win badly after 4 loses and new player Jarius Lyles was jubilant after the win, but warned that they still can play better. “We still aren´t playing our best basketball. Our zone worked very well in the second half. But the most important aspect was that we fought, stuck together and came up with the win”, added Jarius Lyles.

Miles Schmidt-Scheuber with Jarius Lyles after the 82-81 win in Frankfurt

When you haven´t seen the Fraport Skyliners play at home for a month, then the yearning to see them grows and even brings out extra fans as 5,002 people were in the Fraport arena. The Fraport Skyliners didn´t look rusty having played only 1 game in a month making 3 Braunschweig stops on defense and gave an early indication that they could dominate in the paint as Joe Rahon made a left hand lay in and ex Ludwigsburg guard Lamont Jones also scored on the penetration. Braunschweig finally got on the board going on their own mini 4-0 run as Karm Jallow scored on a hard one hand dunk and ex MBC guard Trevor Releford hit a step back jumper to dead lock the contest at 4-4. Braunschweig would take the 6-5 lead with a Jarius Lyles free throw, but Frankfurt quickly grabbed back the lead wit two Leon Kratzer shots. Braunschweig stuck to doubling dangerous scorer Lamont Jones which opened up the floor for Frankfurt to look for many offensive options and execute. After Waleskowski free throws, Austrian national player Thomas Klepeisz hit a tough off balance trey to cut the Frankfurt lead to 12-10. After another Jones double team session, Frankfurt got a trey from wide open ex Michigan State sniper Matt Mcquaid as the Fraport Skyliners led 15-11 after 10 minutes. “It was a slow start for us, but expected after a 2 week break. But we played solid defense”, stated Adam Waleskowski. The Fraport Skyliners shot 40 % from the two point range and 20% from outside and had 7 rebounds and 4 turnovers while the Basketball Lowen Braunschweig shot 29% from the field and 33% from outside and had 9 rebounds and 7 turnovers.

In the second quarter the Fraport Skyliners took control of the game and except for a minor Braunschweig run halfway through the quarter, the home team led by double digits at the break.  Frankfurt went on a 6-2 run to begin the second quarter to extend their lead to 21-13. In the run, Leon Kratzer scored on a hook shot, Quantez Robertson scored inside with his left hand and Rahon made a runner while Releford nailed a pull up jumper. After the Frankfurt run, it was Braunschweig that reacted going on a 5-0 run to cut Frankfurt´s lead to only 21-18. In the run ex BG Goettingen center Scott Eatherton scored all 5 points and was nursing 2 fouls. Frankfurt had lost some intensity in this phase, but it didn´t take them long to buckle down on defense again and go on their next run of 9-2 to extend their lead to 21-18. In the run, German forward Richard Freudenberg connected on a trey, Kratzer had an easy hook shot as there was little resistance from Eatherton who had 2 fouls,  and two lay ins from Jones and Robertson who had little trouble breaking into the zone and scoring. Braunschweig didn´t look good in this phase allowing many easy baskets as there was little communication on defense and no help defense either. In the last few minutes of the first half, Braunschweig did a good job getting to the free throw line, but didn´t execute as well and got 4 points from 27 year old 3 time Belgium cup winner Aleksandar Marelja. Frankfurt continued to control the paint getting two lay in´s from Rahon and one from Robertson as the Fraport Skyliners led 37-27 at half-time. “We ran our plays well on offense and continued to play solid defense. Jones did a good job attacking inside and we got Eatherton in foul trouble”, stated Adam Waleskowski. The Fraport Skyliners shot 59% from the two point range and 22% from the three point line and had 19 rebounds and 7 turnovers while the Basketball Lowen Braunschweig shot 32% from the two point range and 29% from the three point line and had 17 rebounds and 8 turnovers.

Miles Schmidt-Scheuber and Adam Waleskowski in the post game interview after the loss

In the third quarter it looked like the Fraport Skyliners would wrap up the win early leading by as much as 17 points, but the invincible Trevor Releford would take matters into his own hands and get his team back into the game. The Fraport Skyliners got another rapid start going on a 6-2 run to extend their lead to 43-29. Frankfurt continued to attack the weak zone of Braunschweig getting easy buckets from Rahon, Jones and Kratzer. Jones continued to hurt Braunschweig with his quick intelligent passes out of the double team to produce easy baskets. Braunschweig got some key three´s from Klepeisz and ex Alba Berlin guard Lucca Staiger, but Frankfurt just had too much offensive power to contain. Robertson scored inside, but Frankfurt also let the long ball fly as Freudenberg and Mcquaid connected for the Frankfurt 52-35 advantage. But then all of a sudden the Frankfurt offense was slowed down as it became Releford time. The ex Alabama(NCAA) guard got on fire  and led Braunschweig on a 16-4 run to trail only 56-51 after 30 minutes. The American scored 15 points on three three´s, 2 lay in´s and a free throw. “I took what the defense gave me and I was more aggressive. I just tried to help my team as much as possible”, stressed Trevor Releford. “Releford single-handedly got them back into the game. He was hitting shots left and right. They shot the ball and moved the ball better”, added Adam Waleskowski. “Releford is the leader of the team. He hits big big shots and held us on his back. His play shows the commitment and work ethic that he has. He never quits”, stated Jarius Lyles. The Fraport Skyliners shot 63% from the two point range and 29% from the parking lot and had 28 rebounds and 11 turnovers while the Basketball Lowen Braunschweig shot 36% from the two point range and 41% from the parking lot and had 25 rebounds and 9 turnovers.

The fourth quarter proved to be a real dog fight as the Fraport Skyliners couldn´t shake the Basketball Lowen Braunschweig as they were forced into overtime. The Basketball Lowen Braunschweig came into the fourth quarter down, but not out and kept chipping away getting to the free throw line and got a key trey from Karim Jallow. While Frankfurt held the slim lead getting good offensive production from Freudenberg with a 2 handed dunk and trey for the 65-59 Frankfurt lead, but Frankfurt also picked up their fifth team foul at the 5,07 minute mark. Braunschweig continued to play with a lot of self-confidence and rattled Frankfurt with a swift 10-2 run to regain the lead again 69-67 something they hadn´t had since the first quarter. Releford continued to be an annoying menace scoring twice in the paint while Klepeisz hit another trey and Eatherton made a lay in for the lead. Whenever Frankfurt gave a punch with a basket with a Jones three, Braunschweig quietly countered with a swifter punch as Jallow was standing all alone inside getting the bullet pass from Staiger to tie the game at 71-71. The rapid punches continued as Robertson and Releford traded basket as the game was deadlocked at 74-74 with 23 seconds to go. Frankfurt had one last attempt to win the game as Jones penetrated and his runner was blocked, but Freudenberg anticapted well where he ball was and tipped it in, but not in time as the buzzer had sounded. “We continued to trade baskets and just stuck together at the end to force overtime”, stated Jarius Lyles. “The end was so close. Both teams hit big shots. We just came up short at the end”, stressed Adam Waleskwski.

Miles Schmidt-Scheuber and Trevor Releford who dropped 28 points in the victory

Jallow began the overtime period with a lay in while Joe Rahon once again cracked the defense and scored an easy lay up to tie the game at 76-76. It was an outstanding home debut for Rahon who finished with 16 points shooting 58% from the field, had 4 rebounds, 7 assists and 2 steals. After the bitter loss he explained his mind set during the game concerning his role. “I wanted to be aggressive myself as well as be aggressive to make a play. I took what the defense gave me. I scored some easy baskets on transition and found my spots”, added Joe Rahon. Even with the game tight, the Fraport Skyliners looked to be in control with their body language and executed twice well in the paint getting buckets from Kratzer and Jones for the 81-77 advantage with 1,19 to play. Now Frankfurt seemed to be in the driver seat. But Frankfurt would never score again. Braunschweig struck back with a key three from Staiger to cut the Frankfurt lead down to 81-80 with 58 seconds to go. Braunschweig then got a stop on Jones and came back and Releford hit 2 clutch free throws for the 82-81 lead. Frankfurt had 13 seconds left to win the game. In the last seconds they had two good looks from Waleskowski and Freudenberg, but were denied. Waleskowski missed a left handed hook shot while Freudenberg missed an off balance three that was uncontested. “They made their shots at the end. Mcquaid made a good pass to Waleskowski for a shot attempt and Freudenberg had a little more time then he thought. You would think that when Waleskowski gets a left handed hook near the basket and Freudenebrg gets an open three that at least one would fall”, stressed Joe Rahon. “I had no idea how much time was left. I rushed myself. I make that shot 9/10 times. I couldn´t hit anything today”, expressed Adam waleskowski. “Staiger hit a big shot. That is what he does. He is a vocal leader on our team. We fought hard on the last play and did what we could to limit their chances of scoring”, stressed Jarius Lyles. The Basketball Lowen Braunschweig were led by Trevor Releford with 28 points. Thomas Klepcisz added 12 points, Scot Eatherton had 11 points and Karim Jallow contributed 10 points and 6 rebounds while the Fraport Skyliners were led by Joe Rahon and Leon Kratzer with 16 points a piece. Quantez Robertson and Richard Freudenberg added 14 points a piece. The Basketball Lowen Braunschweig shot 39% from the field and 41% from outside and had 35 rebounds and 11 turnovers while the Fraport Skyliners shot 48% from the field and 39% from outside and had 43 rebounds and 16 turnovers.