A fireman is someone who saves lives and can also be defined as a member of a fire department who tries to extinguish fires. A fireman not only is vital to fighting fires and saving people, but the term fireman is also seen in professional sports. In the sport of baseball, a fireman is a relief pitcher who can protect a lead in the last inning or two of the game and with guys like Mariano Riveria or Francisco Rodriguez who could put out fires best in late innings getting out of a jam or just retiring the side with no men on base. Firemen have also been as usual in the German Bundesliga soccer league in the last years as head coaches like Peter Neururer, Jorg Berger or Rolf Schafstall coming to poor teams and saving them from rotting away in the cellar. The most well known fireman in Germansoccer has to be Hans Meyer who is like a nomad just seemingly waiting for that next job somewhere where a fire of balls are falling from the sky with no help in sight. Even the Beko BBL, there have been firemen even as players as Michael Hakim Jordan did it twice saving the Phoenix Hagen season and LTi Giessen 46ers season as his play, leadership and spirit helped the teams remain in the Beko BBL. A special mid season fireman recently also came to FC Bayern Munich with Svetislav Pesic (agency: Interperformances ). It is understood that FC Bayern is nowhere near the end of the standings, but the club had a record of 5-5 at the start of December 2012 which was like as if they were sinking in the Isar river as the traditional and most famous sports team is only used to winning and being at the top and there average record was keeping everyone affiliated and close to the team more than depressed. Pesic has come in and has had a more than immaculate record of 8-1. Since the 82-70 loss in Berlin, the team had a 7 game winning streak including winning four games in a row with 100 plus points. Pesic has turned the team around 180 degrees since taking over for the Greek Yannis Christopolous. Pesic that prides an organized defense is still looking for that consistency on the defensive end, but he cant be disappointed with the potent offense of his team as they have averaged 93 points per game since the arrival of Pesic. Pesic also has in a short time, got the roles untangled as the players are playing with ease and have accepted their responsibilities and come together as a team as the next months will be interesting to see how much more potent this team will get and if they will be able to challenge the Brose Baskets Bamberg for the title in June 2013. The team has scored well and the defense will also be come, but it takes time to grow. I believe FC Bayern Munich is a candidate for at least the semi final or final, warned basketball expert Steven Clauss.
For all those that were born after the first man stepped on the moon, a memory of FC Bayern Munich playing in the first German basketball league will be absent. The last time FC Bayern Munich won a German first division basketball title, the Green Bay Packers won Super Bowl 2, Martin Luther King was assassinated, famous American TV show 60 minutes made its debut on CBS and is still on today, Led Zeppelin make their first Live performance in England and famous Croatian basketball player Toni Kukoc was born as was lovable American actor who you talking about Willis Gary Coleman. The year was 1968 as Bayern Munich won their last title which was a cup. They were also Bundesliga champion in 1954 and 1955. Since the Bundesliga cup win, basketball has been in the shadow of the soccer team moving down and back up in 1974 and then going back to the second Bundesliga in 1982. They were back in the top division in 1987, but returned back down in 1989. Then in 1993, the team was in the Regionaliga. In 1995, 1999 and 2004, the team found itself back in the second Bundesliga, but they never were able to get back into the first Bundesliga as money and quality players were missing. In 2009-2010, 23,000 members from the club Bayern Munich voted and agreed that the basketball department had to be financially supported so that they could return back to the BEKO BBL. In the 2010-2011 PRO A season Bayern Munich plowed through the competition with new head coach Dirk Bauermann, German national players Steffen Hamann and Demond Greene and locker room motivation magnate Darius Hall.
Last season FC Bayern Munich not only brought in experienced basketball players, but with head coach Dirk Bauermann as the Beko BBL version of Phil Jackson who has won 9 Beko BBL titles, seven with Bayer Leverkusen and two with the Brose Baskets Bamberg. And one should not forget his experience that he brought with his coaching duty as German national coach from 2003-2011 leading Germany to a Silver medal at the 2005 European championships. With a budget of seven million Euro, Bauermann had that kid feeling of being able to go into Fao Schwartz in New York city and shop until he drops for the right players. Bauermann knew that he would have a new kind of pressure that he never felt before. There is nothing less accepted than success with FC Bayern Munich. We want to be in the top four teams. We want to play our best basketball when it counts. Titles arent won in October, warned Dirk Bauermann in his rookie season in Munich. The club did a good job not doing a total house cleaning, but keeping a core of guys from the 2011 PRO A championship team. German national players Steffen Hamann and Demond Greene were kept. They may not be the youngest, but still possess special Beko BBL quality. Aleksandar Nadjfeji is 35, but with four Beko BBL titles wanted to add some more with Munich, Darius Hall can still give that big smile and sneer to dazzle you and can give valuable minutes from the bench and young German Bastian Doreth who is being groomed to take over for Steffen Hamann down the road. The club added six top players with three German national players. Jan Jagla returns back to the Beko BBL after playing shortly for the Artland Dragons in 2005, Phillip Schwethelm continues to develop and shines with his defense and shooting and German wunder kind Robin Benzing who is looking to make a further step in the Beko BBL in his third season after not being drafted by the NBA. The team also added Je Kel Foster who is their best one on one player and can be explosive and is a very consistent and reliable player. Ben Hansborough is a Beko BBL rookie and should have some stories about his NBA brother Tyler Hansborough. Fc Bayern Munich already suffered some growing pains as ex NBA player Ruben Boumtje Boumtje declared his retirement on account of heart disease and Sharod Ford left the team because of personal reasons. However the team hauled in Chevon Mr chevy Troutman who didnt need much time to adjust as he belongs to the top centers in the league after only 8 games. We had a roster that could beat any team in Germany. Key was to form a team out of good individual players, warned FC Bayern Munich sport director Marko Pesic.
Last season, The club started off with a tough 80-76 loss in Bonn, but then found their rhythm winning four games in a row against some lesser teams, but were able to beat Braunschweig. The team lost two of the last three games against playoff aspiring teams Oldenburg and Artland Dragons before playing against the Fraport Skyliners in November. Bayern Munich averaged 81 points in the first eight games and held their opponents to 80 points. The offense seemed to be rocking, but not their defense yet. Their strength was shooting the ball. They have so many guys that can fill it up with Greene, Wallace, Schwethelm and Foster. Their defense is ok, but the best bet for a team is too run on them, because they have bigs that dont come back quick enough. They had problems with their pick and roll defense, but we played them before Chevon Troutman came, warned Josh Young. Even though Foster was out done in Overtime by David Holston in the loss at Artland, Foster belongs to the top players in the Beko BBL and lead FC Bayern Munich in tough times. Foster impressed me the most on that team. He is a smart and great shooter and solid on defense. He is just as tough as nails. You have to put Foster in the same trio of Brown, Wood and Holston, warned Josh Young. After the big 58-57 win against the Fraport Skyliners, that Frankfurt should have won, but let Foster get hot in the last minute, the team continued to be up and down into February having a 6-7 record. and their next meeting against the Fraport Skyliners in Frankfurt which they lost 68-49 and Jimmy Mckinney dropped 18 points in the win. The loss in Frankfurt was a huge wake up call as they came out storming in the last 11 games winning ten of the games. There only loss was in Berlin and they had huge wins against Artland, Wurzburg and Bamberg. The strong stretch run helped them reach a position of five with a record of 22-12. They lost a hard fought five games series against the Artland Dragons.
This season, the already high expectations got even greater as now a title is something that the big bosses want to see. The club has one of the biggest budgets in the league and anything but winning titles would be a major disappointment as one is seeing more and more that Uli Hoennes is slowly getting a basketball mentality to match his already huge soccer mentality that will never be surpassed by basketball. The team wanted to keep some of the team chemistry by keeping eight players. Five Germans were kept with captain Steffen Hamann who isnt getting younger, but is a back up player that any team would die for, Demond Greene who can still give a mean defensive presence, Robin Benzing who will strive under new coach Svetislav Pesic (agency: Interperformances ), Jan Jagla who also will strive more under father in law Sveitislav Pesic and young big man Bogdan Radosavljevic who will prosper from daily practices with the experienced players. The club also kept the inside duo of Jared Homan who might be the fiercest player in the league and Chevon Troutman who continues to dazzle with his athletic ability. The team also held Aleksandar Nadjfeji that will end his carrer in Munich. The team added 4 high class players starting with top Israel player Yotam Halperin who has such a versatile game and brings 140 Euroleague games to the table. Lawrence Roberts is an all around solid big man that played 88 games in the NBA. The team also hauled in top point guard Tyrese Rice who can decide a game at anytime and role player Brandon Thomas that could be a top scorer for almost any other team. Before any of these players had even played a minute in the new season, FC Bayern Munich showed their FC Hollywood face releasing a press release that might of even had an eskimo reading it in Alaska as they dismissed Dirk Bauermann. What exactly happened will never be known, but the timing couldnt have been more unusual or untimely. The team stuck with assistant coach Yannis Christopolous who didnt fare well shaping a team of stars. The team then got their wish candidate with Svetislav Pesic (agency: Interperformances ) that won 7 titles with Alba Berlin including the Korac Cup in 1995, the 1993 European championships with Germany and 2001 European championships with Yugoslavia and 2003 Euroleague with FC Barcelona. Pesic is a winner that preaches defense like Bauermann and likes a structured offense. He will bring chemistry to this team. The strength of the team is the deep rotation and that many players stayed form last season. They might also have the best three man inside trio with Homan, Roberts and Troutman and not too forget Jagla who also helps down low. There biggest enemy will be themselves. The pressure will continue to rise as soon as a losing streak rises, but there is no better coach than Pesic to douse the fire when Bayern Munich gets dark red.
Last season the two teams split the season series. FC Bayern Munich won in Munich 58-57 a game that the Fraport Skyliners had as good as won, but let Je Kel Foster get hot in crunch time securing the win. In the return date in Frankfurt, The Fraport Skyliners humiliated FC Bayern Munich 68-49 as they limited them to nine points in the first quarter and 22 points in the second half. Frankfurt showed a strong defensive performance for 40 minutes and was led by Jimmy Mckinney with 18 points and Jermareo Davidson chipped in with 12 points. Since Svetislav Pesic (agency: Interperformances ) took over the team it has a 7-2 record and early on averaged an amazing 109 points in four games. Pesic has quickly made FC Bayern Munich from an average team into an NBA type scoring team. He has given certain players the needed self confidence and needed freedom. The Fraport Skyliners will have to live off their bread and butter defense to have any chance, but steal add a few gears to their win against BBC Bayreuth. Their defense still needs improvement since they have given up 84 points in the five games under Pesic, but their scoring power is so potent, that they can afford to give up points at the moment. In the first game, FC Bayern Munich beta the Fraport Skyliners shortly before the new year 73-59. Frankfurt was down by five points at halftime, but FC Bayern kept pouring it on on offense never losing their rhythm while Frankfurt as so often in this season had big difficulty finding a groove on offense. FC Bayern Munich was led by Robin Benzing with 21 points and Tyrese Rice added 14 points. Peacock, Tez and Scott all hit in double figures and know that this time that they will have to find a rhythm on offense and rebound better. Munich is a big team. We have to outwork them and box out better an dhope for fast break points, warned Dawan Robinson. Frankfurt has brought in two LTi Giessen player with Ryan Brooks and Quantez Robertson friend Laquan Prowell to help with scoring punch. One Skyliner is looking forward to the game. I am looking forward to playing against my ex teammate Jared Homan. Key to winning will be defense, rotations and executing on offense. I have already been doing some trash talking with Homan, smiled Dwan Robinson. Munich knows that their strength isnt on individual defense at some positions, but their offense is so much stronger because they have the freedom and when a player finds an option right away then he is allowed to shoot. They play with the motto that offense is their best defense. If you want to stop Munich then you have to begin under the basket which is tough to do with their many talented individuals. You have to begin at the defensive end and control the boards. One can see that Svetislav Pesic (agency: Interperformances ) is playing the same style as in the German national team, stressed Telekom Baskets Bonn guard Andrej Mangold. Artland Dragon Bryce Taylor has sweet memories of the Audi dome winning a game on a buzzer beater an dhas the perfect three step plan of success for Frankfurt. Frankfurt has to focus on rebounding, play aggressive defense and knock down shots, warned Bryce Taylor.
FC Bayern Munich is led by Chevon Troutman is a 29 year old 202cm forward from Williamsport, Pennsylvania that is playing his second season in Munich. He is a tough, talented rebounder, athletic defender, tough offensive player and fierce competitor who plays with much passion. He has contributed primarily in the low-post but also can play on the perimeter. His high school coach also coached NBA star Allen Iverson. Troutman played at Pittsburgh (NCAA) from 2001-2005 where he reached the NCAA Sweet 16 three years in a row from 2002-2004. As a professional basketball player he has played three years in Italy and three years in France for Adecco ASVEL Lyon-Villeurbanne (France-ProA). He was a French All Star twice and won the cup in 2008 and was French PRO A champion in 2009. In 2010-2011, he played for Air Avellino (Italy-SerieA, starting five), injured in Jan.'11 and was off for 4 months: 16 games: 14.6ppg, Reb-3 (8.3rpg), Steals-3 (2.7spg), FGP: 61.1%, 3PT: 37.5%, FT: 69.0. Last season he played German League: 35 games: 13.5ppg, 7.0rpg, 1.1apg, FGP-3 (64.8%), 3PT: 40.0%, FT: 73.1%; EuroCup: 6 games: 13.7ppg, 6.8rpg, 1.2apg, 1.5spg, 1.0bpg, FGP: 59.6%, 3PT: 42.9%, FT: 70.8%. Tyrese Rice is a 25 year old 185cm point guard that is playing his second season in Germany and first with FC Bayern Munich. He played at Boston College form 2005-2009 playing a total of 132 NCAA games. In 2009-2010, he was a rookie playing for Panionios ON Telecoms Athens (Greece) averaging 11.7ppg, 2.3rpg, 2.4apg, 1.1spg, FGP: 48.8%, 3PT: 29.6%, FT: 81.4%. In 2010-2011 he played for the Artland Dragons Quakenbrueck (Germany-1.Bundesliga, starting five): EuroChallenge Qualifying Round: 2 games: 5.0ppg, 3.0rpg, 3.0apg; German League: 43 Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius (Lithuania-LKL, starting five): Lithuanian League: 25 games: 9.7ppg, 1.4rpg, Assists-3 (4.4apg), 1.0spg, FGP: 49.0%, 3PT: 38.0%, FT: 75.9%; VTB League: 21 games: 13.5ppg, 1.5rpg, 3.7apg, FGP: 48.8%, 3PT: 44.1%, FT: 79.8%; Euroleague Qualifying Round: 3 games: 14.3ppg, 1.0rpg, Assists-4 (5.3apg), FGP: 55.0%, 3PT: 27.3%, FT: 75.0%; EuroCup: 15 games: 11.1ppg, 1.5rpg, Assists-4 (4.7apg), 1.0spg, FGP: 42.6%, 3PT: 24.4%, FT: 87.9%; Baltic League: 4 games: 12.5ppg, 2.3rpg, 2.5apggames: Score-2 (17.2ppg), 2.8rpg, Assists-4 (5.1apg), FGP: 51.9%, 3PT: 36.4%, FT: 81.0%.
Jared Homan is a 29 year old 206cm center from Iowa that is a fierce competitor and battles inside and blocks shots and is playing his seventh professional season. He played at Iowa State from 2001-2005. The American has had a solid professional career having played in countries like Greece, Korea, Turkey, Croatia, Poland and Italy. He played at Canadian Solar Bologna (Italy-SerieA, starting five): 4 games: 15.3ppg, 10.0rpg, 1.0apg, 1.8spg; left in Nov.'11, later that month moved to FC Bayern Muenchen (Germany-1.Bundesliga, starting five): German League: 30 games: 14.5ppg, Reb-3 (7.8rpg), 1.9apg, Blocks-5 (1.5bpg), FGP: 46.4%, FT: 49.7%; EuroCup: 4 games: 12.0ppg, 5.5rpg, 1.8apg, 1.0spg. . Jan Jagla also returned back to the Beko BBL last season after playing in other countries for six years and is playing his second season for FC Bayern Munich. Jagla is a 31 year old 213cm forward from Berlin Germany. A seven-foot power forward with the skill set of a guard. Can post up and score inside and is a great three point shooter as well. Was compared too much times to Dirk Nowitzki at his teenage days, and this limited his maturation. He started his basketball career at Lichterfelde and then went to the States to play NCAA ball at Penn St. He then played for Panellinios Athens (Greece-A1): 3 games: 2.3ppg, 1.0rpg: released in Nov.'04 and joined Artland Dragons Quakenbrueck (1.Bundesliga): 26 games: 6.7ppg, 3.3rpg, 1.0bpg, 2FGP: 55.6%, 3FGP: 30.2%. In 2005-2006, he had a taste of the NBA playing with the Los Angeles Clippers (NBA), waived in Oct.'05, then signed at Drac Inca Mallorca (Spain-LEB, starting five): 28 games: 11.3ppg, Reb-5 (7.8rpg), 1.4bpg, 2FGP: 49.3%, 3PT: 34.2%, FT: 77.1%. From 2006-2011, he played for top tams in Europe including Turk Telekom Ankara, DKV Joventut Badalona (Spain-ACB,) from 2007-2009 where he played with Demond Mallet and Ricky Rubio and helped win the ULEB Cup in 2008. The last two years, he played for Polish Euroleague team Asseco Prokom Gdynia . He has played 40 Euroleague games and has been part of the German national team since 2006. In 2010-2011 he played for Asseco Prokom Gdynia (Poland-PLK, starting five): Polish League: 2 games: 4.0ppg, 5.0rpg; Polish League: Euroleague: 10 games: 5.6ppg, 5.4rpg, FGP: 40.7%, 3PT: 34.5%, FT: 66.7%; VTB League: 4 games: 11.0ppg, 8.5rpg, 1.0spg, FGP: 60.9%, 3PT: 33.3%, FT: 66.7%, in Dec.'10 moved to Turk Telekom Ankara (Turkey-TBL): 16 games: 4.5ppg, 2.4rpg. Currently, he is averaging 8,4ppg and 4,5rpg. Last season he played EuroCup: 6 games: 8.8ppg, 3.5rpg, FGP: 52.4%, 3PT: 70.0%; German League: 36 games: 5.0ppg, 2.8rpg. Brandon Thomas is a 27 year old 198 cm shooting guard/small that is playing his first season for FC Bayern. Even though, he only played sparingly at UMASS in his senior year averaging 4,0ppg and 1,1rpg in the 2006-2007 season, he came to Europe in 2007 and exploded in the leagues in Norway and Austria. In Norway, he led the league in scoring with Fog Naestved averaging 24,5ppg, 4,6rpg, 3,2apf, 2,0spg and 1,0bpg. He was the Danish player of the year in 2008 and was MVP of the 2008 Allstar game. In 2008-2009, in Austria, he played for Kraftwerk Wels averaging 20,2ppg, 3,2rpg, 2,5apg. He has a great basketball IQ, can defend anyone and likes to finish around the rim. In 2009-2010 for Braunschweig, he played 40 games: 10.6ppg, 2.7rpg, 1.2apg, FGP: 57.4%, 3PT: 34.8%, FT: 74.6%. In 2010-2011 for the Phantoms he played : 37 games: 14.3ppg, 4.6rpg, 2.0apg, 1.1spg, FGP: 60.5%, 3PT: 41.2%, FT: 78.7%. Last season he played for Vanoli-Braga Cremona (Italy-SerieA, starting five): 7 games: 4.1ppg, 2.7rpg; in Dec.'11 moved to Artland Dragons Quakenbrueck (Germany-BBL, starting five): German League: 31 games: 11.5ppg, 3.2rpg, 1.2apg, FGP: 62.1%, 3PT: 41.4%, FT: 71.1%; EuroChallenge: 9 games: 14.7ppg, 4.1rpg, 1.4apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 58.5%, 3PT: 41.0%, FT: 88.0%
Robin Benzing is playing his second season in Bavaria and is a 2 year old 208cm forward from Seeheim-Jugenheim south of Frankfurt, Germany. He is a big forward who can play in both positions (if he works on the physical department) as he has the size and the shooting skills too. His game looks like his country-mate Jan Jagla, he is a bit lighter than the German international, and is playing mostly within the wing. He is amazingly good ball handler for his size and he can attack the basket going both ways. He started his basketball career for TV Langen in 2004 and played there until 2009. He played for ratiopharm Ulm the last two seasons playing a total of 66 Beko BBL games. In 2010-2011 season, he was the top scoring German in the Beko BBL averaging 15.1ppg, 4.5rpg, 1.0apg, FGP: 41.7%, 3PT: 33.7%, FT: 77.2%. he also has been a member of the German national team since 2009 and played at the European Championships in Lithuania -11: 8 games: 9.1ppg, 1.4rpg, FGP: 57.1%, 3PT: 52.6%, FT: 78.6%. Last season he played EuroCup: 6 games: 8.8ppg, 3.5rpg, 1.2spg, FGP: 53.6%, 3PT: 22.2%, FT: 84.6%; German League: 35 games: 8.0ppg, 3.3rpg, FGP: 48.1%, 3PT: 35.2%, FT: 71.4%. Yotam Halperin is a 28 year old 193cm shooting guard that is a player with phenomenal personal abilities, although he bases much of his game on movement without the ball and team play. A great shot beyond the rim, fast, clever, good passer. Gifted drawer of fouls. H has great passing skills, knows how to move in traffic and how to draw fouls. He played his first league games for Macabbi Tel Aviv with 17 and Euroleague with 18. He was drafted by the NBA Seattle Supersonics in 2006 in the second round. He never played in the NBA, but continued to paly for Macabbi Tel Aviv and three seasons for Olympiacos S.F.P. Pireus (Greece-A1). He won five Israel league titles with Macabbi Tel Aviv and two Euroleague titles in 2004 and 2005. He also won two cups with Olympiacos S.F.P. Pireus (Greece-A1)and has been a member of the Israel national team for many years. Lawrence Roberts is a 30 year old 206cm power forward from Houston, Texas. He is fundamentally sound at every aspect of the game for his position. Not too many holes or weaknesses to speak of. A born leader and an excellent team player that is always looking to do what's best for the team. Great contributor on the boards. Averaged a double-double in his sophomore year at Baylor and his junior year at MSU. Possesses a good jump shot and solid post up moves. Hard worker that is constantly looking to improve his game. He played at Baylor from 2001-2003 and at Mississippi State from 2003-2005. He was drafted by the Seattle Supersonics in 2005. He played for the Memphis Grizzlies from 2005-2007. He came to Europe in 2007 and played in only three countries with Sebia, Turkey and Lithuania. Last season he played for Efes Pilsen Istanbul (Turkey-TBL), loaned to Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius (Lithuania-LKL, starting five): Lithuanian League: 25 games: 6.5ppg, 5.2rpg, 1.1apg, 1.3spg, FGP: 55.9%, 3PT: 21.6%, FT: 58.6%; VTB League: 21 games: 8.4ppg, 5.3rpg, 1.3apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 55.4%, 3PT: 25.0%, FT: 52.7%; Euroleague Qualifying Round: 3 games: 5.0ppg, 7.0rpg, 1.0apg; EuroCup: 16 games: 7.0ppg, Reb-4 (6.4rpg), 1.1spg, FGP: 40.5%, 3PT: 44.8%, FT: 59.1%; Baltic League: 3 games: 7.3ppg, 5.3rpg, 1.0apg, 1.0bpg.
Demond Greene is playing his third season for FC Bayern Munich and is a 33 year old 185cm guard that was born in Fort Hood Texas. He is spectacular point guard or shooting guard, great athlete, not very tall but he can jump and dunk, good shooter and is a former long-jumper. He started his career at TuS Aschaffenburg in 1996. He then played together with Dirk Nowirzki,Robert Garrett and Marvin Willoughby at DJK S.Oliver Wurzburg. Greene played for DJK S.Oliver Wurzburg from 1997 to 2002. He then played for Bayer 04 Giants Leverkusen from 2002-2005. He then played for ALBA Berlin from 2005-2007. He then played for the Brose Baskets Bamberg from 2007-2009. In 2009-2010, he played for Gymnastikos Olympia Larissas (Greece-A2). In 2010-2011, for FC Bayern Munich, he played 5 games: 6.0ppg, 2.0rpg, 2.6apg, FGP: 43.8%, 3PT: 26.7%, FT: 80.0%. Greene is a four time Beko BBL All Star, won the Beko BBL cup in 2006 with Alba Berlin and has been a member of the German national team in 2000-2001 and from 2004 until present winning the Silver at the 2005 European championships. Last season he played : EuroCup: 6 games: 2.0ppg, 1.0rpg; German League: 39 games: 4.9ppg, 1.6rpg, 1.0apg. German national player Steffen Hamann returns for a third season to Munich. Hamann is a 31 year old 194cm guard from Bamberg. He started his career at Bamberg in 1997 and played there until 2008. He was Beko BBL champion twice with Bamberg. He played for Alba Berlin from 2008-2010 winning the Beko BBL cup in 2009. In 2010-2011for FC Bayern Munich, he played 20 games: 10.3ppg, 1.8rpg, 4.3apg, 1.1spg, FGP: 58.8%, 3PT: 42.2%, FT: 85.9%. Before coming to Munich, he has played 88 FIBA international club games. He has been a member of the German national team since 2003 winning the silver at the 2005 European championships. Last season, he played : EuroCup: 6 games: 6.5ppg, 1.0rpg, 3.8apg, FGP: 56.3%, 3PT: 44.4%, FT: 90.0%; German League: 39 games: 7.4ppg, 1.9rpg, 4.5apg, FGP: 57.9%, 3PT: 28.6%, FT: 69.0%. Aleksandar Nadjfeji is playing his 11th season in the Beko BBL and third with FC Bayern Munich and is a 36 year old 203cm forward from Serbia that is has excellent athletic skills. Can run and jump. Very impressive dunker. Can shot. Also good defender. He played for The Telekom Baskets Bonn from 2001-2005 where he never averaged less than 13,8ppg a season in the German league. He then played for RheinEnergie Koln from 2005-2008 where he helped win the Beko BBL title in 2006 and helped win a cup. As Cologne was having problems financially, he went to Alba Berlin in the middle of the 2007-2008 season helping them win the championship in 2008 and cup in 2009. He then played for the Walter Tigers Tuebingen and in 2010-2011 season with FC Bayern Munich played 30 games: 12.9ppg, 4.4rpg, 2.0apg, FGP-3 (66.4%), 3PT: 18.8%, FT: 58.0%. Last season he played EuroCup: 6 games: 3.5ppg; German League: 35 games: 5.7ppg, 2.8rpg, 1.1apg, FGP: 54.6%, FT: 59.0%.
Will Cummings (188-G-92, college: Temple) is a 24 year old 188cm point guard from Jacksonville, Florida playing his second professional season and first with Aris Thessaloniki (Greece-A1) averaging 15,2ppg, 3,6rpg and 3,7apg in Champions League play. He played at Temple (NCAA) from 2011-2015 amassing a total of 111 NCAA games and as a senior played 36 games averaging 14.8ppg, 4.1rpg, 4.2apg, 1.9spg, FGP: 46.4%, 3PT: 22.9%, FT: 80.8%. As a rookie last season he played for the Houston Rocke... [read more]
Will Cummings (188-G-92, college: Temple) is a 24 year old 188cm point guard from Jacksonville, Florida playing his second professional season and first with Aris Thessaloniki (Greece-A1) averaging 15,2ppg, 3,6rpg and 3,7apg in Champions League play. He played at Temple (NCAA) from 2011-2015 amassing a total of 111 NCAA games and as a senior played 36 games averaging 14.8ppg, 4.1rpg, 4.2apg, 1.9spg, FGP: 46.4%, 3PT: 22.9%, FT: 80.8%. As a rookie last season he played for the Houston Rockets (NBA), released in Oct.'15, then moved to Rio Grande Valley Vipers (D-League): 52 games: 20.5ppg, 3.6rpg, 4.7apg, 2.0spg, 2FGP: 53.7%, 3FGP: 37.7%, FT: 78.5%, in Apr.'16 signed at Dolomiti Energia Trento (Italy-Serie A): 4 games: 9.5ppg, 2.3rpg, 1.3apg, 1.0spg. he spoke to eurobasket recently after Aris had beat the Fraport Skyliners in Germany in Champions League action.
Welcome to Germany Will. Is this your first time in Germany? What do you know about the country and it's basketball?
Yes that was my first time in Germany. I don't really know too much about their basketball since this is really my first year playing basketball overseas. I just know Germany has great cities to live in and visit.
Do you have any other friends currently playing in Germany besides TJ DiLeo? I think another former temple player Ryan Brooks might currently be playing in Germany. I know he has in the past.
Your playing your first complete season in Europe after being a rookie in the D-league last season and then played briefly with Dolomiti Energia Trento (Italy-Serie A): 4 games: 9.5ppg, 2.3rpg, 1.3apg, 1.0spg. What was your wake up call to being in Europe for the first time and playing professional ball?
I would say my wake up call was playing against Milan in the first round of the Italian playoffs. Jumping right into an important and high level situation for your first experience forces you to learn quickly.
This season you are playing for Aris Thessaloniki (Greece-A1). You are playing in a very strong league with many talented imports from around the world. As a point guard what do you believe has been the biggest adjustment for you getting accustomed to the European game? As a point guard I believe the biggest adjustment is learning the defenses that are being played in Europe. I played in the D league for a full season so you get accustomed to the amount of space on the court. In Europe everything is more compact so you have to find ways to still be affective with less space.
Currently the team is in sixth place in Greece and have a 8-4 record in the Champions League. What is the biggest difference for you in style and talent between the two leagues? I would say the biggest difference is the refs from European games and Greece games.
Your rocking in both competitions in the Greek league as well as in the Champions League. Just from the stats would it be fair to say that you a scoring point guard first and playmaker second?
I don't like to label myself. I leave that for other people evaluating my game. I just try to be affective and make plays in each game to help my team win.
When you were growing up who were your NBA role models and to what NBA player would you say does your game now resemble most?
Growing up my NBA role models were Allen Iverson and Chris Paul. I feel like I have a mixture of different players I resemble at different times. I feel like I have my own identity.
How valuable has your teammate Michael Jenkins been for in the first few months in terms of you getting accustomed to the league and life? Has he taken you a bit under your wing?
Mike has helped me a lot getting adjusted to life in Europe. Showing me the in and outs of just living on your own for a long period of time out of America.
How tough has it been with pronouncing the names of your teammates? Do you invent short nicknames for a guy like Vasilis Xanthopolous? But this name isn't even that difficult because many of the Greek names have that Thopolous on the end?
The names haven't been that difficult to pronounce but I have developed nicknames for all of them to eliminate me having to pronounce them.
How do you feel is your game improving on a daily basis when you go head to head each day with Xanthopolous in practice? Do you feel like your basketball IQ is at a different level than what it was before you came to Europe?
Going against Xanthopolous in practice has helped me because he has such a great feel for the game. He makes you figure out ways to try and out smart him. I do feel that I'm learning more.
As a rookie in 2015 you played NBA Summer League with the Houston Rockets and then was signed and played six pre season games before getting waived. Every player I talk with that has been in a NBA training camp has had their story, but how was it with you. How did you learn in this month experience that at the end of the day basketball will always be a business no matter how talented you are? NBA training camp was definitely and eye opener and showed me this basketball is business so it made me a lot stronger and mentally tougher to deal with my new lifestyle.
You were playing against a guy like Patrick Beverly who had played 5 years in Europe before making the jump to the NBA. When you compare your game to a guy like that what do you believe is still missing in your game to reach the NBA?
I don't believe anything is really missing from my game to be in the NBA. I would like to be a more consistent pull up shooter but opportunity just has to be given.
Last season as a rookie you had a very strong season with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers (D-League): 52 games: 20.5ppg, 3.6rpg, 4.7apg, 2.0spg, 2FGP: 53.7%, 3FGP: 37.7%, FT: 78.5%. For a talented guy like you not scoring in double figures in 35 minutes per game is hard, but you still showed immense consistency doing it in all 52 games. Did you feel like you had deserved an NBA call up?
I definitely believe I deserved an NBA call up.
Last summer you played NBA Summer League with the San Antonio Spurs. Is Europe a stepping stone for you to develop your game and continue to try for the NBA in the future? Yes Europe is a stepping stone to still try and make the NBA.
You played at Temple (NCAA) from 2011-2015. How did head coach Fran Dunphy groom and prepare you best for a professional basketball career? Fran Dunphy was the best thing that happened to my basketball career. He groomed me into a man and the tough player that I am today. I thank him for that.
You played two seasons with TJ DiLeo who is playing his 4th season in Germany. How annoying was his aggressive defense in practice every day and how do you believe did you profit from his presence on the floor?
I honestly can't really remember practices back. So much time has passed.
You surely had many memorable games at temple8NCAA), but where do the back to back wins against Uconn and Memphis rank towards the end of your senior season?
Those back to back wins get thought about a lot. They are high on my list because I thought those two wins secured us into the NCAA tournament but we were robbed. Also, beating UCONN was on senior night. Having my whole family there was memorable.
You played against many great players in the NCAA, but what player was your toughest opponent that is in the NBA now?
I didn't have any.
Who won a one on one in practice you or Devin Coleman?
Great question. I can't remember but I'm sure I did haha.
Jacksonville seems to be a city that grooms future NFL players with very few basketball people as the most notable are Otis Smith and Dee Brown. If you could have a dinner with Dee Brown what would you want to most about his basketball experience he had?
I would want to know most about his workout habits and what he did to take himself to another leve
If you had to construct your own NBA Rushmore, which 4 heads would you choose? Michael Jordan, Tim Duncan, Kobe, Kareem
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?
MJ is the GOAT.
Where do you rank Kevin Garnett with the best power forwards that ever played the game?
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According to eurobasket sources Chris Hill wil start his pofesional career in Europe in style joining the up and coming Pro A team Hamburg Towers. Hill is a 26 year old 23cm forward from Los Angeles, California that will be playing his fourth profesional season after toiling around mostly in the minor leagues in the United States and playing in South America. He recently played for the GIE Maile Matrix (UBA). Last season he had looks and workouts with the Oklahoma City Thunder, Dallas Mav... [read more]
According to eurobasket sources Chris Hill wil start his pofesional career in Europe in style joining the up and coming Pro A team Hamburg Towers. Hill is a 26 year old 23cm forward from Los Angeles, California that will be playing his fourth profesional season after toiling around mostly in the minor leagues in the United States and playing in South America. He recently played for the GIE Maile Matrix (UBA). Last season he had looks and workouts with the Oklahoma City Thunder, Dallas Mavericks, Minnesota Timberwolves and San Antonio Spurs. This past September he was with the Utah Jazz (NBA) in training camp. Last season Hill played for the La Salle-UPB Cochabamba (Bolivia-Libobasquet): 15 games: Score-4 (23.7ppg), 8.2rpg, 2.1apg, 2.3spg, 2.1bpg, FGP: 52.3%, 3PT: 39.0%, FT: 81.0% and in 2016 played for the Jose Horacio Rodriguez (Dominican Republic-Moca Reg.League): 10 games: 20.0ppg, 7.3rpg, 2.1apg, 1.0bpg, FGP: 51.3%, 3PT: 50.0%.
The American played college basketball at SW Missis.CC (JUCO) and as a senior played 20 games averaging 19.1ppg, 8.1rpg, 2.3apg, 1.3spg, FGP: 49.1%, 3PT: 35.0%, FT: 75.0%. He started his professional basketball career in 2012 with the South Carolina Warriors (ABA): 29 games: 24.4ppg, 9.3rpg, 5.0apg, FGP: 51.3%, 3PT: 43.3%, FT: 78.0%. He also played for the Johnston County Nighthawks (TRBL) playing 7 games: 29.1ppg, 5.4rpg, 2.7apg, 1.1spg, 2FGP: 64.2%, 3PT: 40.9%, FT: 80.4%. IN the 2013-2014 he moved to the Cary Invasion (TRBL) playing 18 games: 20.0ppg, 6.0rpg, 3.0apg, Blocks-1 (3.0bpg), FGP: 51.3%, 3PT: 50.0%. In 2014 he played for the Savage Inc. Basketball Team (A-League): 6 games: 20.2ppg, 5.5apg, 6.5rpg, 1.7spg, 1.5bpg, FGP: 50.2%, 3PT: 35.3%, FT: 85%. Achievements in his basketball career have been TRBL Eastern Conference Regular Season Champion -14, TRBL Finalist -14, and Bolivian Libobasquet All-Star Game -14