Even if the opening game of the 2016 Basketball Aid international tour is 72 hours old, memories of that game for players and fans will be on their mind radar for a while as fans will relive the alley-oop put backs by Mike Morrison and amazing unending talent of 16 year old Isaac Bonga where not the sky, but space seems to be the limit and especially for Americans Mike Morrison and Quantez Robertson being on American solid and trying to find their home state flags of Florida and Ohio in t... [read more]
Even if the opening game of the 2016 Basketball Aid international tour is 72 hours old, memories of that game for players and fans will be on their mind radar for a while as fans will relive the alley-oop put backs by Mike Morrison and amazing unending talent of 16 year old Isaac Bonga where not the sky, but space seems to be the limit and especially for Americans Mike Morrison and Quantez Robertson being on American solid and trying to find their home state flags of Florida and Ohio in the beautiful cozy state of the art Clay Kaserne gym for everyone to swoon at. However even if the tour has moved on rapidly in the last days having gone to Luxemburg where their national team battled German Pro A team Dresden Titans and on Sunday still with the Luxemburg national team on board moved to German city Hanau which is 25 kilometers east of Frankfurt, the term that still had a tiny effect was the Frankfurt Skyliners. If Luxemburg national team head coach Ken Diederich who as a player was a nine time Luxemburg all-star and four time league champion with AB Contern, had done his homework the last days, he would have found out that both head coaches that he faced with Steven Clauss of Dresden and Simon Cote of Hanau had been coaches with the Fraport Skyliners within the last 10 years. However on Sunday in game three of the 2016 Basketball Aid international tour, the name Frankfurt Skyliners wasn't on the menu, but instead good European basketball with an always international flair and not too forgot the Basketball Aid cause always as the main focus as that was what the players were really playing for. As always Basketball Aid international tour chairman Hans Beth who was head coach of the Hanau organization four years ago was present and running around shaking hands and making sure that everything was running along smoothly and as always was pleased with another well-made production that benefited the basketball aid charity as well as bringing fans the best possible preseason basketball action as high scoring was on the menu as the Hebeisen White Wings delighted their fans with a nasty 109-66 spanking of the Luxemburg national team. 'I am very happy how everything went in Hanau. It was well organized and the fans saw a good game. Hanau had a very good shooting game. For Luxemburg it was a good test for their upcoming Euro qualifying games. They played against a very physical team with Hanau and that will help them for their upcoming Euro qualifying schedule'. explained 2016 Basketball Aid international tour chairman Hans Beth.
With it being one of the hottest days of the summer in the Frankfurt region, there was no difference in Hanau either as it felt like a desert outside and when one arrived in the Main-Kinzig arena, it felt even worse, like one was locked away in a sticky sauna with the door was slammed shut in your face. It wasn't the best conditions for the players, but every single player knew that there was a special meaning behind the game with the Basketball Aid charity as always as the main feature. Finding a player who hasn't in some way been effected by the cancer disease would be about as difficult as guessing the real mistress count that Wilt Chamberlain had back in the day, because cancer just seems to be everywhere. Ex TBB Trier player Samy Picard who played 52 BBL games and played catch with current NBA player Chris Copeland with his former German team took a deep breath when he had to recount how cancer had effected his family. 'The mother of my wife died a few years ago on cancer. It was a very difficult time for her. It is important to support basketball aid. We all love basketball and to be able to play for a good cause is excellent. I don't know if we will ever be able to beat cancer, but we have to try it', stressed Samy Picard. 'I lost my uncle and grandmother to cancer. Playing the game is only a small part, but it is most important to help fight cancer in any way. I will always do what I can to help', expressed Hebeisen White Wing guard Eugene Harris.
The Hebeisen White Wings had had some tough test against BBL teams like Giessen and Wurzburg where they had had some very close games and then had another game against the MHP Riesen Ludwigsburg where they were spanked in a bad way losing by 40 points. They came into the game knowing that the Luxemburg national team wasn't of BBL caliber, but remained focused and just shot the lights out shooting 49%, controlling the boards and just playing unselfish basketball. 'We went into the game with some goals and we improved our rebounding, ball movement and competing well for 40 minutes. I liked our style in the game and we know that no matter who we play, we play unselfish', stressed ex Davidson (NCAA) guard Brian Sullivan (180-PG-93, college: Davidson). Ex High Point (NCAA) standout Eugene Harris was also pleased by the effort of the Hebeisen White Wings and felt despite having a blow out, the self confidence was vital for the team. 'Key in this win was competing with ourselves. This was a game to get better at executing on offense and defense and getting myself in the right spots to get my teammates to be their best. This win also helped the self confidence of our new German guys', added Eugene Harris. After losing to the Dresden Titans 48 hours ago by only 10 points, they had a more difficult time with the Hebeisen White Wings as the intensive heat cloud in the arena coupled with the opponents hot shooting did them in all night long. 'We could use the excuse and say that we had a 4 hour bus drive and then had to play in this heat, but Hanau also had to play against the heat. Hanau just shot extremely well. We tried everything on defense to shake them up, but nothing worked', expressed Luxemburg national player Samy Picard.
The Luxemburg national team was without star Tom Schumacher who was at home waiting for the birth of a child while Rueben Spoden of Hanau was still nursing an injury, but is expected back ready at the start of the season. There wasn't total domination by the Hebeisen White Wings from the get go, but rather the usual feeling out of both teams as the game was tight in the early going. It was the work horse Kuize Pinkins who got going early establishing good position and just getting easy buckets as he scored twice giving the Hebesien White Wings the early 6-4 advantage. This in turn kept sparking the Hanau offense as they continued to get easy baskets inside and on transition as Harris scored on transition and Pinkins made an offensive rebound and easy put back for the12-6 Hanau lead. German Tili Joscha Joenke was also very important in the early going doing an excellent job at the point pushing the ball forward whenever possible and organizing the Hanau offense well and just getting them rolling. After a Dean Gindt lay up who has won three Luxemburg league titles, Hanau started to switch up their offense and started hitting from downtown as Harris and Sullivan hit back to back trey's for the 18-10 Hanau advantage. Samy Picard ceased this sudden Hanau offensive onslaught with two big buckets inside, but Hanau put the ultimate dagger in the comeback heart of Luxemburg burying two further back to back three's from Sullivan and Christian Von Fintel. After one quarter, the Hebeisen White Wings had the comfortable 26-14 lead. The Hebeisen White Wings were shooting 53% from the field and 50% from outside while the Luxemburg national team was shooting 40% from the field and 20% from outside. Hanau had the 12-5 rebound edge, but three turnovers while Luxemburg only had two turnovers.
In the second quarter the Hebeisen White Wings continued to execute at ease and continued their hot shooting from the parking lot. The two Hanau Americans Sullivan and Harris were sprouting with immense zeal and self-confidence and just wanted the ball at all times and were successful as Sullivan hit a jumper and then nailed a three followed by a Harris trey which extended the Hanau lead to 36-19. Luxemburg didn't have any massive offensive threats down low so they relied on their shooting which was mediocre or here and there sneaking inside as 23 year old Alex Laurent did showing why he won the 2016 Luxemburg allstar slam dunk contest with a hard dunk. However the Hebeisen White Wings always had an answer and just continued to shoot shoot shoot and hit hit hit as ex Kirchheim Knight Jordan Wild hit twice and Joenke and Sullivan again and before Luxemburg head coach Ken Diederich could wipe his brow for the 25th time getting rid of the nasty sweat, Hanau was leading 48-26. Luxemburg closed out the second quarter with a mini 4-0 run as Laurent hit four free throws. At halftime the Hebeisen White Wings were leading 48-30. The Hebeisen White Wings were shooting 44% from the field and 50% from the three point line while the Luxemburg national team was shooting 43% from the field and 22% from the three point line. Hanau had the 21-12 rebound edge and both clubs had seven turnovers a piece.
The Hebeisen continued to dominate the game in the third quarter as they continued to shoot out the lights while the Luxemburg national team mixed up their defensive formations with different zone's as well as man to man, but they couldn't put a rattle into the sound Hanau offense. Hanau didn't waste any time jumping out on a quick 7-2 run as Joenke nailed another three pointer while Pinkins showed his unique inside out game scoring inside where he really makes it look like he is on a stroll in a park and then nailed a three pointer as the Hebeisen White Wings led 56-32. The three pointer is something Pinks wants to develop further this season as he came in as a rookie last season having shot 39% as a senior at USF, but only 20% last season with Hanau. Luxemburg got another dunk from Laurent who was the most consistent player for them, but Hanau had production from every player as the success of the American guard combo of Sullivan and Harris seemed to rub off on German Von Fintel as he scored in bunches with a trey and lay in to extend the Hanau lead to 63-38. Luxemburg then got a rare 5-0 run as Picard buried a trey and Bob Melcher who plays for Amicale Steinsil since 2010 scored inside as Hanau suffered a defensive breakdown cutting the Hanau lead to 63-43. Sullivan had already lite up the Main-Kinzig arena in the first half and didn't hear any Sulliiiiiiiiiiiiii chants yet as he did in the Belk arena at Davidson the last years whenever he demonstrated his shooting art, but the Hanau fans might catch on in the next games, but the Ohio native showed also a strong separation between knowing when to score and when to display his playmaking abilities. On back to back plays, Sullivan showed his explosiveness as an offensive player as he first found ex Essen forward Paul Albrecht with a bullet pass inside and then caught Von Fintel back door for the reverse lay up and then stroked home another three pointer giving Hanau the huge 70-43 lead. 'Luxemburg played much zone so we drove and kicked and that opened me up much more for shots which got me in rhythm. I think that my shooting and playmaking feed off each other. I am not a one dimensional player. My goal is always to get my team the best shot', warned Brian Sullivan (180-PG-93, college: Davidson). Teammate Eugene Harris is happy that he has Sullivan in the back court with him. 'Sullivan can really shoot the heck out of the ball and it is vital that he can spread the floor. He also is a very good defender', stressed Eugene Harris. Hanau continued to supply the pressure pffensively as Sullivan connected for another trey and ex Nordlingen big man Josef Eicher scored inside and also made free throws. Harris also made a beautiful step back three from the corner that a Steph Curry couldn't have done better. After three quarter, the Hebeisen Whi+te Wings had the commanding 85-57 advantage. The Hebeisen White Wings were shooting 51% from the field and 48% from the parking lot while the Luxemburg national team was shooting 47% from the field and 33% from the parking lot. Hanau had the overwhelming 33-16 rebound edge, but 11 turnovers while Luxemburg had nine turnovers.
The Hebeisen White Wings had their best defensive quarter in the fourth keeping Luxemburg to nine points, but the question for the fans was how many point would Hanau get at the end? The Hebeisen White Wings seemed to want to get that 100 points quickly as they cruised out on a massive 12-2 run as they got three consecutive three's from Harris, Albrecht and ex Tuebingen German Julian Albus, Eichler also scored using some baby steps to confuse his defender. After 22 year old 200cm forward Yann Wolf made an off balance jumper, Hanau went on a 7-0 run to eclipse the 100 point mark. Pinkins started the run with an unbelievable off balance shot from the corner with an angle that only NBA legend Larry Bird could of made in the day, but the Hanau forward saw nothing but net an d then Von Fintel nailed a three and Albrecht hit free throws as the Hebeisen White Wings led 104-61. With a few minutes remaining, Luxemburg got some production from Pit Koster and a three from Gindt while Hanau got a fascinating shot clock buzzer beater from Von Fintel as he nailed the three over Delgado and he ended the game with free throws. The Hebeisen White Wings continue to prepare for the regular season while Luxemburg now will compete in the 2016 Euro qualifying tournament. ''We start with three road games, so it will be tough. We will have to sell ourselves as best as we can. I think we will have the best chance against Hungary. We have nothing to lose and seemingly no pressure, but there is always that pressure not to lose by 30 or 40 points', stated Luxemburg national player Samy Picard. The Hebeisen White Wings were led by Brian Sullivan (180-PG-93, college: Davidson) and Christian Von Fintel who scored 22 points a piece. Kruize Pinks chipped in with 15 points and nine rebounds and Eugen Harris added 14 points and 10 assists. Josef Eichler contributed 10 points. The Luxemburg national team was led by Alex Laurent with 14 points. Samy Picard and Bob Melcher added 11 points a piece. The Hebeisen White Wings shot 49% from the field and 45% from outside while Luxemburg shot 43% from the field and 27% from outside. Hanau had the massive 47-23 rebound advantage and both teams had 13 turnovers a piece. The 2016 Basketball Aid Tour resumes on Tuesday in Mainz as the Giessen 46ers meet Pro A team Gotha.
Usually professional teams start carving out their new roster for the upcomng season by first giving contract extensions, but sometimes that gets reversed as in the case of Jason Boone (200-F/C-85, college: New York U., agency: Three Eye Sports) who got rewarded very late in the transfer market phase by being able to call Ludwigsburg home for a second season as he will remain until 2017. Boone is a 30 year old 200cm power forward/center that tips at 116 Kilo's on the scale and will go int... [read more]
Usually professional teams start carving out their new roster for the upcomng season by first giving contract extensions, but sometimes that gets reversed as in the case of Jason Boone (200-F/C-85, college: New York U., agency: Three Eye Sports) who got rewarded very late in the transfer market phase by being able to call Ludwigsburg home for a second season as he will remain until 2017. Boone is a 30 year old 200cm power forward/center that tips at 116 Kilo's on the scale and will go into his ninth season in Germany after playing one season in Turkey.In Ludwigsburg, The Suguar Loaf, New York native is a fan favorite and even in Frankfurt last season, he was known as being that sixth man in the stands supporting his friend John Little on many occassions last season, but if he will make the trip to Frankfurt in street clothes this season is more than unlikely as his friend left, but on the court he will as usual create havoc in the paint area. Last season for the MHP RIESEN Ludwigsburg (Germany-BBL), he played 33 games averaging 6.0ppg, 3.8rpg, FGP-1 (71.6%), FT: 51.9%; Eurocup: 16 games: 5.7ppg, 2.6rpg, FGP: 61.8%, FT: 56.1%. "It is always a good feeling to return. I feel at home here and am ready for the new season. It is still early in the preseason, but we are playing together at the moment. That will be important in the next weeks. The guys are working hard. I feel I can take the role in as a veteran and guy that gives experience", stated Jason Boone (200-F/C-85, college: New York U., agency: Three Eye Sports).
Jordan Talbert (198-F-91, college: Missouri So.) is a 25 year old 198cm forward from Little Rock, Arkansas that will be playing his third professional season and first with the PS Karlsruhe Lions. He came to Germany as a rookie in 2014 and played with the Giants TSV 1861 Noerdlingen (Germany-Regionalliga) playing 26 games: 21.6ppg, 9.6rpg, 3.2apg, 2.0spg, Blocks-4 (1.5bpg), FGP: 51.7%, 3PT: 28.9%, FT: 78.4%. He played his college career at Missouri SO (NCAA2) from 2010-2014 and as a senio... [read more]
Jordan Talbert (198-F-91, college: Missouri So.) is a 25 year old 198cm forward from Little Rock, Arkansas that will be playing his third professional season and first with the PS Karlsruhe Lions. He came to Germany as a rookie in 2014 and played with the Giants TSV 1861 Noerdlingen (Germany-Regionalliga) playing 26 games: 21.6ppg, 9.6rpg, 3.2apg, 2.0spg, Blocks-4 (1.5bpg), FGP: 51.7%, 3PT: 28.9%, FT: 78.4%. He played his college career at Missouri SO (NCAA2) from 2010-2014 and as a senior played 31 games averaging 11.7ppg, 7.4rpg, 2.9apg, 1.1spg, 1.7bpg, FGP: 44.8%, 3PT: 37.0%, FT: 70.1%. Last season with Nordlingen he tore up the Pro B averaging 17.5ppg, Reb-1 (11.0rpg), 2.4apg, 1.7spg, Blocks-5 (1.5bpg), FGP: 48.5%, 3PT: 27.5%, FT: 73.4%. He spoke to eurobasket about his new adventure with PS Karlsruhe.
Jordan thanks for talking to eurobasket.com. Where are you at the moment and how has your summer been? No problem, my summer was great and fulfilling. I really enjoyed my time back in the states with family and friends. At the moment I'm in Karlsruhe preparing for the upcoming season.
Congrats on signing with PS Karlsruhe. How was the summer transfer period for you? You signed rather late. Did you have a good share of offers that made your decision making tougher? No the decision was fairly easy for me. And to my knowledge I didn't have many offers to choose from but I'm happy that PS Karlsruhe had enough interest in me to bring me in.
There were some of your colleagues from last season like Elijah Allen and Julian Scott that made thr jump to the Pro A. I would have thought that you would be a sure shot. Did you have Pro A offers that just didn't fit your situation? No I didn't have any pro A offers. I guess I wasn't what any of the teams were looking for or they found better options than me which is understandable. I'm very happy for those guys that were able to make the transition and wish them much success.
Last season with Nordlingen you averaged 17,5ppg and led the league with 11rpg. Is Jordan Talbert (198-F-91, college: Missouri So.) a Pro A caliber player playing in the Pro B at this point? I really don't know what caliber player I am. I know that I'm a competitor that's going to give 100% each game and at each practice to be the best player I can be. Anything other than that is out of my control, and anything that's out of my control are things that I don't worry about.
What were the main reasons for joining PS Karlsruhe? What sold you on their program most? The club is up and coming, and very hungry from what I can tell. Me already being a very motivated and driven player it's like adding fuel to a fire when everyone else around you is just as ambitious and prepared to put in the necessary work. I've felt right at home from the first day.
After two seasons with the Giants Nordlingen what is your personal goal this season?
Perhaps the most logical helping PS Karlsruhe move up to the Pro A? My personal goal is to win as many games as possible. I like to not have any expectations going in but we have a lot potential and I plan on doing everything in my power to make sure we maximize it.
The club just moved up from the Regionaliga and are very focused to keep their winning ways alive. The club has hauled in many German players. Do you see having the same type of role as last season in Nordlingen were you were the main scoring option?
It's still very early to determine each players role from game to game. I think that's apart of team chemistry building. My intent is to come in and do whatever is needed for us to win rebounding, defense, or scoring.
The club has talented forwards with German Bill Borekambi and Croatian Dino Jakolis. Will not necessarily having to carry that' scoring load like in Karlsruhe like you did in Nordlingen be welcoming to you? We definitely have talented guys here that are able to do a lot of things. In Nordlingen much of the season and for most of the playoffs we only had a 7 or 8 man rotation. So playing 35+ minutes a night and doing all the things I had to last season for us to have a chance won't be necessary. But if coach asks that of me I will be prepared to deliver at any moments notice.
How excited are you to be playing in a city that has another team with BG Karlsruhe? In New York they call the Yankees-Mets series the subway series and in Karlsruhe they could call it the cross town series. Being from another country I was definitely unfamiliar with the rivalry but just in week I think everyone has caught me up on the history. Personally I'm looking forward to it. Those games are always the best games because it means just a little bit more to everyone which raises the competition level. The energy for that game is building day by day and I know that we're going to come prepared to battle that day.
You had a very strong season last season in Nordlingen. How did you keep the hunger alive this summer and keep working on parts of your game that you aren't happy with? Motivation has never been a problem for me. My ambitions and work ethic are the only reasons I'm still playing right now. I wasn't happy at all with my shooting percentages last season and with how my body felt towards the end of the season. So I really focused on things I could do to improve in those areas.
How did a summer work out session look like for Jordan Talbert (198-F-91, college: Missouri So.) on and off the court? My day would start at 4AM with a good healthy breakfast and meditation. I would make it to gym at 5 and stay until 8 with some weight lifting and shooting. Then from 6PM to 830PM I was strictly on the court working on my craft. Off the court I had a strict diet. Cut out chocolate in particular which has always been an Achilles heel of mine. I would do this 5 times a week which now has me in the best shape of my life I believe.
Are you catching the 2016 Summer Olympics. What events besides Basketball do you enjoy watching? Yes I'm definitely keeping up with the Olympics. I enjoy track and field, swimming, gymnastics, and women's soccer. I just love watching people compete. As an athlete I know how much this moment means to them and what's not to love about watching someone put their heart and soul on the line for any event. It's inspiring.
Is Australia a dark horse for a medal? They beat France by 21 points in the opening game and have a pretty motivated team with 4 NBA players? When it comes to basketball I'm not sure nor do I care who the silver and bronze go to as long as USA brings home the gold.
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