German BBL round 12 best performance: Deon Thompson - Dec 11, 2012
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American forward Deon Thompson (203-F-88) put on an amazing game in the last round for ALBA, receiving a Eurobasket.com Player of the Week award for round 12. The 24-year old player had a double-double of 14 points and 10 rebounds, while his team beat LTi 46ers (#18, 2-10) 71-61. ALBA is placed at 3rd position in German BBL. They are still close to the very top. ALBA would have been even better if they kept winning the games like in the last round. They have a solid 8-2 record. Thompson turned to be ALBA's top player in his first season with the team. Former University of North Carolina star has very solid stats this year. Thompson is in league's top in points (4th best: 15.3ppg) and averages impressive 53.4% FGP.
The second best player in last round's games was 30-year old Cape Verdean Ryan Gomes (201-F-82) of Art.Dragons. Gomes had a very good evening with a double-double of 19 points and 12 rebounds. Bad luck as Art.Dragons was edged by the lower-ranked MBC (#15, 5-8) 87-83. This loss caused Art.Dragons to drop to 6th position in the standings. His team lost some distance to top teams. But 7-5 record is not bad and everything may still change. Gomes is a newcomer at Art.Dragons, but is already one of team's top players.
Third on the list of top players last round was American guard Reggie Redding (196-G-88) of Walter Tigers (#10). Redding showcased his all-around game by recording 17 points, seven rebounds and four assists in the last round. He was a key player of Walter Tigers, leading his team to a 83-72 win against the lower-ranked Bremerhaven (#14, 5-7). The chances of Walter Tigers ranking at the top of the league, however are very questionable as they have already lost 6 games, recording just five victories. With bigger assistance of his teammates, Redding could help Walter Tigers to bring them higher in the standings. Redding has a great season in Germany. After 11 games, he made it on the list of the league's leaders in points with 14.0ppg (9th best) and assists with 3.9apg (5th best).
Other top performing players last week: 4. John Bryant (208-C-87) of Ratiopharm - 22 points and 8 rebounds 5. Adam Chubb (208-F/C-81) of EWE Baskets - 13 points, 12 rebounds and 2 assists 6. Jared Jordan (188-PG-84) of Telekom Baskets - 8 points, 4 rebounds and 10 assists 7. Kenny Frease (213-C-89) of Walter Tigers - 19 points, 8 rebounds and 2 assists 8. Bostjan Nachbar (207-F-80) of Brose Bask. - 19 points and 2 rebounds 9. Lawrence Roberts (206-F/C-82) of B.Muenchen - 11 points and 10 rebounds 10. Kelly Beidler (199-F-88) of MBC - 10 points, 7 rebounds and 3 assists
The Player of the week is choosen based on efficiency calculation, but also including game result, importance of the game, if played recorded double-double/triple-double, etc. The efficiency formula is a combination of various formulas used by different basketball organizations/leagues. We got involved many basketball scouts and journalists to assure it's accuracy. The formula: 1.5*PTS + 3*(REB+AST+ST+BL-TO) - 2*BSAG - 4*PF + 3*PFRV + 4*(2FGPM+3FGPM) + 1.5*FTM - 3*(2FGPA-2FGPM) - 3*(3FGPA-3FGPM) - (FTA-FTM)
Last year was a season to forget for the Dragons Rhondorf as they finished dead last in the German Pro A and were regulated back to the Pro B, a place where they had played many seasons against the Fraport Skyliners Juniors. Two seasons ago, both teams split as the Dragons Rhondorf lost an exciting spectacular game in Frankfurt 77-75 as Kyle Fossmann won the game with his bread and butter the deep three from the parking lot and teammate Johannes Richter was in monster mode under the board... [read more]
Last year was a season to forget for the Dragons Rhondorf as they finished dead last in the German Pro A and were regulated back to the Pro B, a place where they had played many seasons against the Fraport Skyliners Juniors. Two seasons ago, both teams split as the Dragons Rhondorf lost an exciting spectacular game in Frankfurt 77-75 as Kyle Fossmann won the game with his bread and butter the deep three from the parking lot and teammate Johannes Richter was in monster mode under the boards netting 22 points and grabbing 17 rebounds. In the return game in Rhondorf, fans witnessed the total opposite as the Dragons Rhondorf destroyed the Fraport Skyliners Juniors 119-65 as they had five players score in double figures led by American Justin Smith with 26 points and Germans Tim Schonborn had 21 points and Fabian Thuelig contributed 20 points. A little more than two years later the two teams met again as the eighth place Dragons Rhondorf with a record of 4-6 faced the Fraport Skyliners Juniors with a record of 3-7 and resting in tenth place. Only a hand-full players from two seasons ago remained with Viktor Frankel-Maus and Sascha Tratnjek while Frankfurt could only offer Lenny Okeke. The Fraport Sklyiners Juniors now had to contend with the beast Aaron Nelson who carried 23 and 13 stats into game and Frankfurt head coach Eric Detlev wished that he could of had a Johannes Richter on board, but then again didn't need him because he had Mahir Agva who came on the train with teammate Stefan Ilzhoefer from Braunschweig after helping beat the Basket Lowen Braunschweig the night before with the Fraport Skyliners and helped the Pro B team overcome a Rhondorf come back in the second half and beat them 74-69. After the loss, a dejected Dragons Rhondorf point guard Viktor Frankl-Maus reflected on the loss and buzzer beater from two seasons again. 'I remember that buzzer beater as I was just coming back from an injury. I warmed up before the game, but didn't play. That was an up and down game with less points. I thought that we could get back and possibly win this game tonight with a last shot. It is hard to believe that we couldn't win despite having 22 offensive rebounds. Usually you should score 80-90 points when you get that much. We didn't shoot well, but our defense was ok except for the second quarter', explained German Viktor Frankl-Maus. After the win, Agva was stretching and when confronted with the notion that he had been responsible for the team turnaround after his return where he produced 30 points and the game winner against Leverkusen a week ago and 15 points in Rhondorf, he just innocently sighed and took the winning feeling all in stride. 'I try to be the team leader and do what the team needs from me with scoring and rebounding. We were lucky to win this game. Usually when you get 22 offensive rebounds you win. We had big plays at the end and made our free throws. But that is how basketball works sometimes. Our defense was key at the end as well. I am glad that we are winning and I think that we are on a good way', stressed Fraport Skyliner Mahir Agva.
It was another new home coming for Fraport Skyliners head coach eric Detlev who worked 11 years for the Dragons Rhondorf starting as an assistant coach and getting the head coaching job in 2009 and leading the club to the Pro B title in 2010 and then moved to Frankfurt in 2012. Before the game he felt like he shook 15 hands as well as hugs from many well-wishers from back in the day. When the last well-wisher traded his own anecdote with Detlev, the game finally began which saw the guests get out in a big way leading 6-2 quickly as Alaska native Travis Thompson (185-G-91, college: Alaska-Anch.) who tested his 64% three point percentage and ex Ludwigsburg guard Stefan Ilzhoefer dropped consecutive three pointers. However Rhondorf got into the game quickly as they set the tone early on the offensive glass demonstrating their aggressiveness and never ending desire to rule on the rim as they got some easy buckets inside from Illinois native Aaron Nelson and German Florian Wendeler made an offensive rebound and put back dunk and then dunked on the pick and roll with Frankl-Maus as the game was tied at 10-10. Both teams then would trade buckets twice as Ilzhoefer and Thompson scored while Rhondorf countered with a Nelson lay in and Thomas Michel off balance shot to tie the game at 14-14. The Canadian sensation Mike Lucier than muscled down an offensive rebound and made the put back for the first Dragons lead of the day. However 17 year old German sensation Isaac Bonga rammed home an extra athletic exclamation mark as he saw daylight and flew down the lane with a thunderous one hand dunk which silenced the Dragon dome ending the first quarter 16-16. 'We did a good job getting second chance opportunities and points. We also played with a lot of heart against the physical defense of Frankfurt', stressed Dragons Rhondorf CEO Boris Kaminski. The Fraport Skyliners Juniors were shooting 50% from the field and from outside while the Dragons Rhondorf were shooting 39% from the field and 0% from outside. Rhonndorf had the 13-5 rebound edge, but five turnovers while Frankfurt had three turnovers.
In the second quarter, Frankfurt gave an early sign that they were in the mood of breaking away, but Rhondorf withstood a few tries, until they wilted halfway through as the guests would break open the game and lead by double digits. The Fraport Skyliners Juniors took control right away going on a 8-3 run to lead 24-19 as ex Bremerhaven guard Garai Zeeb connected on back to back three pointers and young German Armin Trtovac hit a pretty 20 footer. Rhondorf came back getting buckets from New York native Will Trawick and German Bastian Winterhalter who made a running hook shot to cut the Frankfurt lead to 26-24. Then came the turning point of the second quarter as the Fraport Skyliners Juniors exploded for a 14-2 run to go into halftime with the comfortable 40-26 advantage. In the run, Frankfurt dominated the paint area as there was no big body to serve as a wall as Nelson was on the bench. Frankfurt got two tough buckets in traffic from Ilzhoefer and Thompson and then the Alaska native rushed by two Rhondorf defenders for another easy basket. Agva got to the free throw line twice, but connected only twice while Bonga made a runner. Agva really put a dagger through Rhondorf's heart in the last seconds as he nailed a trey with his usual high rainbow. 'Not having Nelson in hurt us in the paint area as Frankfurt got many easy baskets. Our back up point guard Patrick Reusch couldn't play to add stability when Frankl-Maus was out. It really hurt us when he wasn't in. We started to lose confidence and had doubt after a few missed shots', added Dragons Rhondorf CEO Boris Kaminski. The Fraport Skyliners Juniors were shooting 60% from the field and 56% from the three point line while the Dragons Rhondorf were shooting 31% from the field and 0% from the three point line. Frankfurt did a better job on the boards narrowing the Rhondorf rebound advantage to 18-17. Rhondorf had six turnovers and Frankfurt had five turnovers.
In the third quarter, the Dragons Rhondorf staged a fierce comeback carving down the Frankfurt lead to 52-50 after 30 minutes. The Fraport Skyliners started off the third quarter with a beautiful play as Ilzhoefer found Bonga back door, but instead of making the lay up chose to distribute the no look pass to the better positioned Agva who made the bucket for the 42-26 advantage. Bonga once again demsonstarted his unselfish play something which can be credited to his early beginings in Koblenz. Rhondorf got some production from Frankl-Maus making free throws and from Nelson getting another easy basket inside to cut the Frankfurt lead to 44-32. Zeeb and Ilzhoefer then made free throws extending the Frankfurt lead to 46-32. Then came the Dragons run of 18-6 which shocked Frankfurt and got the home team back into the life and brought life back into the quieter Dragon Dome. American Will Trawick started the big run with a trey ending the Rhondorf three point drought. Rhondorf just kept chipping way looking for Nelson inside for easy buckets and Frankl-Maus also scored inside showing how well he can help lead a team under pressure. Michel also made a big bucket converting on a trey to cut the Frankfurt advantage to 48-42. Frankfurt got an important basket from 17 year old ex TV Langen guard German Niklas Pons who helped them get some production in this Rhondorf dominated time, but Nelson simply continued to be too much scoring from anywhere as he dropped a 20 footer and then converted an offensive rebound into a put back and Wendeler secured free throws as Frankfurt led by only 52-50 after 30 minutes. 'We didn't play good offense. We all made mistakes including myself. Rhondorf got the momentum and the gym got loud which helped them', stressed Mahir Agva. 'We played a lot better and that showed with our bod language and intensity on the court. We worked from stop to stop and did all the small things better like rebounding and getting loose balls. We also did a good job keeping the Frankfurt defense under pressure', added Viktor Frankl-Maus. The Fraport Skyliners Juniors were shooting 50% from the field and 36% from the parking lot while the Dragons Rhondorf were shooting 35% from the field and 14% from the parking lot. Rhondorf rebounded a lot better again having the 34-24 edge and both teams had eight turnovers a piece.
In the fourth quarter, the Fraport Skyliners executed on another huge run, but the Dragons Rhondorf exhibited heart again not letting their heads hang and fought back a last time. Nelson got Rhondorf on the board first with a lay in over the Frankfurt double team to dead lock the game at 52-52. Frankfurt then burst out on a 12-0 run to claim the comfortable 64-52 lead. In the run, they got continued solid production from Agva who connected on another mid distance shot and rocked home an off balance shot. Bonga also scored on an off balance shot, Ilzhoefer and Thompson connected on free throws and Zeeb poured home a deep three on transition rounding out the run. Frankfurt had the momentum again displaying how quickly their offense can get going and played more rigid defense not letting Rhondorf get good shots. Rhondorf still had some energy in their tank and kept their composure and rode out on a 13-4 run to cut the Frankfurt lead to 68-65. In the run, Rhondorf got some much needed support from downtown as Nelson and Trawick connected, but also got vital production in the paint from Wendeler with a lay in and Frankl-Maus showcasing his immense speed once again not getting contested by Bonga. Nelson nailed a baby hook shot over Agva and all of a sudden the Dragon Dome was loud again and Rhondorf down by only 68-65. Bonga and Frankl-Maus then traded free throws as Frankfurt still led 70-67. Despite the youth of Frankfurt as they average only 18 years per player, they stayed very calm in the last minute and a half and gave the reigns to Travis Thompson who drove the Fraport Skyliners Juniors to the win with a very difficult drive form the base line in traffic and connected off the glass for the 72-67 Frankfurt lead. Frankl-Maus then made free throws as did Thompson for the 74-69 lead. Ilzhoefer doused the last attempt by the Dragons Rhondorf with a steal ending the game. 'We were a bit tired at the end, but we can't take that as an excuse. I think that not having Reus today hurt as impulses from him were missing. We played good defense on Thompson and he made a tough shot', stressed Viktor Frankl-Maus. 'They were tired at the end, but so were we. We were the better team mentally and wanted to win the game more', expressed Mahir Agva.
The Fraport Skyliners Juniors were led by Travis Thompson with 21 points. Mahir Agva added 15 points and seven rebounds. Stefan Ilzhoefer produced 12 points while Garai Zeeb contributed 11 points and six assists while Isaac Bonga had 10 points, five rebounds and four assists. The Dragons Rhondorf were led by Aaron nelson with 27 points and 10 rebounds. Viktor Frankl-Maus produced 15 points, five rebounds and eight assists. The Fraport Skyliners Juniors shot 52% from the field and 38% from outside while the Dragons Rhondorf shot 37% from the field and 22% from outside. Rhondorf had the 43-31 rebound edge including the massive 22-3 offensive rebound edge and both teams coughed up the ball 10 times a piece.
Openjobmetis Varese (Serie A) signed 29-year old American shooting guard Dominique Johnson (192-88kg-87, college: Azusa Pacific, agency: Higher Vision Sports). He already started the season at ALBA Berlin in German BBL league. In 11 games he had 8.6ppg, 2.8rpg and 1.9apg this season. Johnson also played 6 games in Eurocup where he recorded very impressive stats: 15.2ppg, 3.0rpg, 2.5apg and 1.7spg. The last season he played at Banvit in Turkish BSL. In 32 games he averaged 13.5ppg, 1.9rpg,... [read more]
Openjobmetis Varese (Serie A) signed 29-year old American shooting guard Dominique Johnson (192-88kg-87, college: Azusa Pacific, agency: Higher Vision Sports). He already started the season at ALBA Berlin in German BBL league. In 11 games he had 8.6ppg, 2.8rpg and 1.9apg this season. Johnson also played 6 games in Eurocup where he recorded very impressive stats: 15.2ppg, 3.0rpg, 2.5apg and 1.7spg. The last season he played at Banvit in Turkish BSL. In 32 games he averaged 13.5ppg, 1.9rpg, 2.3apg and 1.3spg. Johnson helped them to make it to the Turkish Cup Semifinals. He also played 18 games in Eurocup where he got 14.6ppg, 3.1rpg, 2.0apg and 1.2spg. In 2010 Johnson was drafted by Idaho Stampede (D-League) in third round (16th overall). The former Azusa Pacific University (NCAA Div.II) standoutis in his seventh season in pro basketball. Johnson has tried to make it to the NBA and played in the NBA Pro Summer League in 2012. He was voted All-NAIA D1 1st Team back in 2010 at his college time. Johnson is quite experienced player. He has played also professionally in Israel (Maccabi Rishon), Poland (Slask and Stabill), D-League (Sioux Falls Skyforce, Salt Lake City Stars, Texas Legends and Canton Charge) and NBA (Minnesota Timberwolves). Johnson could be described:
Dominique is an athletic 6'5" combo guard with a strong body and great ability to score and defend. He is an outstanding teammate and personality, a smart player who is better suited in Europe as a scorer and a top defender. Dominique could easily become one of the top players in Europe even at the Euroleague level.
Vance Hall(193-PG-91, college: Bellarmine) is a 25 year old 193cm point guard from Frankfort, Kentucky that is playing his second professional season and first with the MLP Academics Heidelberg (Germany-ProA). Last season as a rookie he played for Thor Thorl (Iceland-Dominos League) playing 26 games: 23.6ppg, 6.8rpg, 4.5apg, 1.6spg, FGP: 48.3%, 3PT: 37.9%, FT: 86.8%. He started his basketball career in 2010 with Wright St. (NCAA) where he played until 2010 playing a total of 55 NCAA games. [read more]
Vance Hall (193-PG-91, college: Bellarmine) is a 25 year old 193cm point guard from Frankfort, Kentucky that is playing his second professional season and first with the MLP Academics Heidelberg (Germany-ProA). Last season as a rookie he played for Thor Thorl (Iceland-Dominos League) playing 26 games: 23.6ppg, 6.8rpg, 4.5apg, 1.6spg, FGP: 48.3%, 3PT: 37.9%, FT: 86.8%. He started his basketball career in 2010 with Wright St. (NCAA) where he played until 2010 playing a total of 55 NCAA games. In 2012 he moved to Bellarmine (NCAA2) playing 32 games: 14.9ppg, 3.7rpg, 2.4apg, 1.0spg, FGP: 55.0%, 3PT: 45.9%, FT: 91.4%. As a senior for Bellarmine (NCAA2) he played 31 games: 14.7ppg, 4.6rpg, 4.7apg, 1.1spg, FGP: 49.2%, 3PT: 41.4%. He spoke to eurobasket after the 64-49 win against Nurnberg.
Vance thanks for talking to eurobasket.com. Congrats on the big 64-49 win against Nurnberg. Coming into the game Heidelberg had lost three of four games. How important was getting the win and is this the start of a longer winning streak? Losing 3 out of 4 games is very tough but I hope we learned from each of those games. It was very crucial that we went to Nurnberg to handle business and get back on the winning side of things. Hopefully this is a start to a longer streak of wins
Last week Diante Watkins went off for 34 points. This time you held him to 14 points and six turnovers. How vital was it really making basketball life difficult for him for 40 minutes?
it was very important for us to limit him in that game and we did so by team defense. That was one of our goals for the game
You held Nurnberg to the lowest point total of the season with 49 points. Was this the best defensive team effort of the season or was games against Chemnitz, Hamburg or Essen better?
I would say this was definitely one of the top three defensive performances from us this year. Not sure which is the first
Heidelberg is the best defensive team in the German Pro A giving up 69 points per game. How have you seen the progression of the defense from game one?
We are starting to communicate a lot better with each other out there on the court. You need good communication to have a good defense and we have improved I think every game with that
What is the secret to the success of the stellar defensive play? Is it effort coupled with trust? Definitely trusting your teammates. Trusting your teammates is one of the most important things on both sides of the ball. Offense and defense
Your playing your first season in the Pro A and as a rookie played with Thor Thorl (Iceland-Dominos League)26 games: 23.6ppg, 6.8rpg, 4.5apg, 1.6spg, FGP: 48.3%, 3PT: 37.9%, FT: 86.8%. What has been the biggest adjustment coming to the Pro A from Iceland? The biggest adjustment would really just be learning new teammates and what style of basketball they play. This league is a step up too so competition is better
The team has many scoring options, but you are one of the most consistent scorers on the team. What is your role on the team? My role on the team is to do whatever it is possible to help us get to our next win. Some nights that may consist of scoring the ball and some nights that may mean I need to play more defense in certain areas or make hustle plays to get us going
You have meshed very well with experienced Hrvoje Kovacevic. How have you benefited most from his basketball mind? Kova has been a great teammate. He is always there to lend a helping hand of knowledge when it is needed. He has been a very big asset to our team in the season so far
You are a guy that can fill the stat sheet, but what would you say is a hidden strength in your game that doesn't always get noticed right away on the court? I take pride in making toughness plays. There might be that one loose ball that gets us that extra possession and I want that for my team
What was your wake up call to being a rookie in Iceland last season where you knew that you were very far away from Kentucky?
The first night I laid my head down on the pillow I thought where am I, but once I got to the basketball gym that was no foreign language to me. I knew I was there to work and get better with my team
After you finished at Bellarmine (NCAA2) in 2014, you didn't turn professional right away and then played in the Kentuckiana Pro Am (Team KPA #1) before going to Iceland. Were you not sure that you wanted to go the professional route after school? I really wanted to go play professional basketball for sure but there was no reason for not going right away, I just put it in Gods hands and it wound up turning out for the best for me
After not playing much at Wright State (NCAA) you transferred to Bellarmine (NCAA2) and had two strong seasons there shooting over 40% from downtown. How do you feel did you grow as a player in your last two seasons? I feel I did great in my last two seasons. I loved the location I was in and to be a part of the Bellarmine basketball program was something special to me
You came to Bellarmine after Braydon Hobbs had left and he has had a stellar career moving up the basketball ladder step by step. Is he like a role model for you in that you want to follow in his footsteps as a professional and be successful? Of course Braydon is a role model to me. We keep in touch often and see each other at times in the summer. He's a great guy and I hope he keeps his trail of success continuing
As a freshman at Wright State (NCAA) you were teammates with Vaughn Duggins for one season before he went overseas and has had a great career in Germany and France. What memories do you have of him? What were you able to learn from him that has helped you throughout your career?
I learned a lot from Vaughn being a freshman at Wright State. Going up against him and other elite guards every day definitely helped shape me into the guard I am today.
How did head coach Scott Davenport groom and prepare you best for a professional basketball career at Wright State?
Coach Davenport taught us many things at Bellarmine. How to present ourselves on and off the court. He was a very big part in helping me take my game to the next level at Bellarmine and I have nothing but thanks for him
Who won a one on one you or Vaughn Duggins? I'm not sure haha I think I could give him a run for his money
What have you learned to appreciate most about Germany? You live in a very nice area and you can visit many nice places quickly? I love Germany and the location I am in. So many places to go and see right here in Heidelberg
Lebron finally brought an NBA title to the Cavs. Where does he stand at the moment in the never ending debate with where he stands as the best of all-time? I think he is definitely one of the best of all time. I'm not sure who is number one but he is definitely in the conversation for number one
Where do you rank Kevin Garnett with the best power forwards that ever played the game?
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