After the huge 89-86 win in Coburg where Kameron Taylor made himself immortal to Dragons Rhondorf fans with his amazing 35 point, 10 rebound and 12 assist masterpiece against Coburg in their own posh living room and made everybody there happy until the next game, their whole hard work of practice and hopes of continuing their winning streak to two games were crushed in Leverkusen as a seemingly comfortable 62-54 lead heading into the fourth quarter on the road was squashed. They relinquished an unacceptable 34-13 last quarter making the last weeks seem like an eternity as the club with the massive ambitious to move up to the Pro A have lost three of their last four games. The players escaped off the court in Leverkusen full with embarrassment and shame and were wishing that they could of somehow got back that fourth quarter and done it better. A week later, the Dragons Rhondorf returned back to their home court with a lot of question marks and did some real soul searching the last week, but knew that coming home is always positive since they are a very tough team to beat inside their own four walls. The club also knew that they had beat the Dresden Titans on the road holding their nerves 73-71 as their ex player Canadian Kevin Thomas had sealed the win with free throws. However this time both teams were a bit different as Dresden had hauled in three new players with Magnum, Debache and Hall and the Dragons had gotten Brandon Watkins. Kameron Taylor wanted to continue his stellar play at home and help lead his team to a new winning streak while the Dresden Titans wanted to continue their impressive defense after giving up only 52 points against FC Bayern Munich last weekend. Taylor came through again as he registered his second triple double in a row at home and second in three games lifting the Dragons Rhondorf to a convincing 91-74. Win. Despite his stellar game of 22 points, 14 rebounds and 12 assists, the club showed in the fourth quarter that they are a real team as they stepped up in a big way getting much scoring punch from various players while Taylor scored only one point. “We didn´t have that fire against Leverkusen, but did a good job maintaining it for the whole game against Dresden. We let down a bit in the second half, but played team basketball, rebounded well and made them take tough shots. We did get called for some fouls behind the three point line, but we rather play aggressive defense than play passive defense”, warned ex Ehingen guard Kameron Taylor. The Dresden Titans had a bad start and played catch up basketball for the whole game, staged a huge comeback in the third quarter, but couldn´t stay consistent on defense in the fourth quarter as their decreasing energy bit them in their own butt. “We were overrun at the start. We wanted to stop their transition, play good help defense and good set defense, but we didn´t do any of that tonight. We did a pretty good job against their zone press and came back, but ran out of energy in the fourth quarter. We had a bad break with the Sebastian Heck disqualification foul, but Rhondorf is a very good team, but we could of played a lot better”, warned ex American(NCAA) guard Janek Schmidtkunz. “We gave up too many transition baskets and rebounded badly, but we never gave up and fought until the end”, added ex Easter Michigan(NCAA) guard Willie Mangum.
Steven Bennett is a 29 year old 173cm point guard from Los Angeles that is playing his sixth professional basketball season and first with the Dresden Titans. As a rookie he played for the Spot Up Medium Baskets Braunschweig. With Braunschweig he played 10 games averaging 22.7ppg, 4.1rpg, 5.1apg, 2.4spg, 2FGP: 57.5%, 3FGP: 34.2%, FT: 76.6% He is one of the few special players that has a tenacity and will to win that is unmatched; it is impossible to judge him based upon height alone because he can compete with anyone in the world. He has proven this in the Maui Invitational division I tournament in 2010, and was recognized as one of the top players (All-Maui Award) from a field of other top US point guards such as Kemba Walker, Kailin Lucas and Brandon Knight. Bennett is known for his great court vision and passing ability, and is able to get in the lane at will and finish against anyone with either left or right hand. Every team bases their defensive strategy around Bennett and is forced to take create his own shot and take his three point shots off the dribble. He is an excellent shooter, but wants to continue to improve his already respectable 40% three point percentage. Steven is known for having excellent leadership skills, and is highly respected by all of his peers and coaches. He played at Citrus JC (JUCO) from 2007-2009 and then played at Chaminade (NCAA2). In the summer of 2013 he also found experience playing for the Rockingham Flames (Australia-SBL) He played three games with 2013 NBA draft pick Dennis Schroeder as a rookie in the Pro B. In the 2013-2014 season he played for the LTi Giessen 46ers (Germany-ProA) playing 37 games averaging 11.1ppg, 3.0rpg, 3.4apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 44.4%, 3PT: 32.6%, FT: 66.7%. In the 2014-2015 season he played for CEZ Basketball Nymburk (Czech Republic-NBL) playing 5 games: 5.2ppg, 1.2rpg, 3.8apg, FGP: 31.3%, 3PT: 30.0%, FT: 87.5%; VTB United League: 1 game: 0pts, 1ast, left in Jan.’15, later that month moved to JBC MMCITE Brno (Czech Republic-NBL) playing 12 games averaging 14.0ppg, 3.7rpg, 3.7apg, 1.5spg, FGP: 50.7%, 3PT: 27.7%, FT: 74.1%. He last played in Germany for the Finke Baskets Paderborn (Germany-ProA) playing 13 games averaging 10.3ppg, 2.2rpg, 2.5apg, FGP: 41.8%, 3PT: 30.8%, FT: 71.8%He spoke to German Hoops about basketball.
Steven thanks for talking to German Hoops. Where are you at the moment and how has your summer been going?
I’m currently in Toronto, Canada. My summer has been great, just training and getting ready for the upcoming season.
Marqueze Coleman is a 23 year old 193cm guard from Mission Hills, California that completed his rookie season in Germany with the Dresden Titans (Germany-ProA) averaging 8,7ppg, 4,7rpg and 2,3apg. He played at Nevada (NCAA) from 2012-2016 playing a total of 120 NCAA games and as a senior played 33 games averaging 14.6ppg, 4.2rpg, 3.2apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 44.4%, 3PT: 30.9%, FT: 74.3%. He spoke to German Hoops after finishing his rookie season in Germany.
Marqueze thanks for talking to German HoopsI don´t want to start of an interview like this, but on one hand you can be very thankful of having landed 2 jobs here with Wurzburg and Dresden, but at the same time it hasn´t been the easiest rookie season after leaving Wurzburg, you were 0-7 with new team Dresden. Did you ever think your rookie season could go like this as you got off the plane last summer in Germany to play for Wurzburg?
Yeah I’m very thankful to have two great opportunities to play in Germany, it is such a great country to play in. Although it hasn’t been the ideal rookie season for me, I’m using it as a learning tool for myself and another obstacle for me to overcome. The experiences I’ve experienced my rookie year will not only make me a stronger professional basketball player throughout my career but a stronger individual aside from basketball.
Your rookie season has finally ended. You played 7 games for the Dresden Titans averaging 8,7ppg, 4,7rpg and 2,3apg. How would you summarize your short stay with this German team?
I definitely feel I could have done better with the Dresden Titans but with the circumstance given I thought I competed hard each game.
What did you learn from your rookie season that will help you in your continued path as a professional?
The style of play is one thing that will help me as I continue my professional playing career. There’s a lot of new things about the way the game is played in Europe that I will continue to use and get better at.
Jervon Pressley is a 21 year old 203cm forward from Charlotte, North Carolina that is playing his rookie season and started with the Dresden Titans playing 10 games averaging 10.3ppg, 6.3rpg, 2.0bpg, 2FGP: 51.4%, FT: 49.1%, but got released and joined MBK Lucenec (Slovakia-SBL). He started his basketball career in 2011 with Towson (NCAA) playing 31 games averaging 3.6ppg, 3.0rpg. In 2013 he moved to Hampton (NCAA) playing 21 games averaging 6.6ppg, 5.1rpg, 1.1bpg, FGP: 43.8%, FT: 56.9%. In his junior year he played 32 games averaging 6.1ppg, 4.8rpg, 1.4bpg, FGP: 44.3%, FT: 54.5%. As a senior he played 27 games averaging 6.6ppg, 5.8rpg, 1.7bpg, FGP: 46.7%, FT: 53.2%. He spoke to German Hoops recently about his time with the Dresden Titans and future with MBK Lucenec (Slovakia-SBL).
Jervon thanks for talking to German Hoops. You are back on your way back to the United States after being released from German Pro A team Dresden Titans. Were you able to wind down on the flight a bit or was the Dresden Titans season fiasco in your head?
I mentally moved on to getting myself prepared to help my next team and not dwell on the past. Short term memory. What’s done is done.
The Dresden Titans released you and American Randal. Do you feel it was the right decision to release it´s two best players so late in the season?
To the club it was the right decision to release the team’s two best players.
When you came out of training camp this season and somebody had told you on the eve of the first game that the team would only have 2 wins by late January and be the door mat of the league what would you have thought?
Randal Holt is a 25 year old 185cm point guard from Bedford, Ohio that is playing his third professional season, but was recently released by the Dresden Titans where he played 20 games averaging 16,0ppg, 3,0rpg and 4,5apg.He started his basketball career at Kent St. (NCAA) in 2009 and played 131 NCAA games until 2013 and as a senior played 33 games averaging 14.6ppg, 3.2rpg, 2.5apg, 1.3spg, FGP: 36.4%, 3PT: 38.6%, FT: 86.0%. As a rookie he played for Weissenhorn Youngstars (Germany-ProB) playing 25 games: 19.4ppg, 3.6rpg, 4.2apg, 1.8spg, FGP: 53.3%, 3PT: 38.2%, FT: 81.6%. Last season with the Dresden Titans he played 15 games: Score-3(21.7ppg), 4.3rpg, Assists-3(6.1apg), 1.8spg, FGP: 50.4%, 3PT: 40.5%, FT: 85.1%. He spoke to German Hoops after being relased by the Dresden Titans.
Randall thanks for talking to German Hoops. You are back on your way back to the United States after being released from German Pro A team Dresden Titans. Were you able to wind down on the flight a bit or was the Dresden Titans season fiasco in your head?
Hello Miles thank you for the interview. I was able to unwind on the flight and just focus on getting home safely and eager to see my family.
The Dresden Titans released you and American Jervon Pressley. Do you feel it was the right decision to release its two best players so late in the season?
Yes we were released from the team and it was a decision that came down from management who is in charge of those decisions so if they felt it was the right move for the team then I can’t argue that at all.
Jervon Pressley is a 21 year old 203cm forward from Charlotte, North Carolina that is playing his rookie season in Germany with the Dresden Titans. He started his basketball career in 2011 with Towson (NCAA) playing 31 games averaging 3.6ppg, 3.0rpg. In 2013 he moved to Hampton (NCAA) playing 21 games averaging 6.6ppg, 5.1rpg, 1.1bpg, FGP: 43.8%, FT: 56.9%. In his junior year he played 32 games averaging 6.1ppg, 4.8rpg, 1.4bpg, FGP: 44.3%, FT: 54.5%. As a senior he played 27 games averaging 6.6ppg, 5.8rpg, 1.7bpg, FGP: 46.7%, FT: 53.2%. He spoke to German Hoops about the first few months of his rookie season.
Jervon thanks for talking to German Hoops. Congrats on the big 75-61 win at home against the Hamburg Towers. How much of a release was it getting that 10 game losing streak monkey off your back?
It was a great release for the club and the long loyal supporting fans.
This was the best defensive performance of the season. Why do you feel did it take so long to defend consistently for 40 minutes?
I just feel as if everything is coming into play, we have a new coach and a new defensive philosophy, took time to adjust but everyone bought in so we could go into this break and new year with a win. “You are only as good as your last performance”.
David Sturner is a 206cm power forward/center playing his second season in Germany for Pro A team Dresden Titans He started his basketball career with Oregon State playing 13 NCAA games and then moved to S.Oregon (NAIA) and as a senior played 31 games: 14.6ppg, 9.2rpg, 1.2apg, 1.5bpg, FGP: 56.2%, 3PT: 36.4%, FT: 56.2%. He started his professional basketball career with the West Adelaide Bearcats (Australia-Central ABL) before coming to Germany. Last season for Dresden he played 27 games averaging 13.1ppg, 7.0rpg, 1.1apg, FGP: 54.7%, 3PT: 31.7%, FT: 65.4%. This season he is averaging 17,3ppg, 8,3rpg and 3,0apg. He spoke to German Hoops after the big 75-61 win against the Hamburg Towers.
David thanks for talking to German Hoops. Congrats on the big 75-61 win at home against the Hamburg Towers. How much of a release was it getting that 10 game losing streak monkey off your back?
My pleasure Miles, always great to talk with you! Thank you, I think it was very important for us to get that win going into the break. Not so much to end the losing streak, but to put us in the right direction heading into the second half of the season.
This was the best defensive performance of the season. Why do you feel did it take so long to defend consistently for 40 minutes?
I think we had focused a lot on pushing the tempo against teams and getting quick shots that often times put us in bad spots on defense. Since coach Flynn has been with us, our focus is defense, and we are now starting to trust each other and do the little things it takes to be a great defensive team.