John Bynum is a 35 year old 191 cm guard from Visalia California that came out of a short retirement recently and played for New Energie Elephants Grevenbroich (Germany-Regionalliga) before leaving in January 2014. Last season he played for BV Chemnitz 99 (Germany-ProA): 21 games: 11.8ppg, 5.2rpg, 3.6apg, 1.5spg, FGP: 50.8%, 3PT: 15.4%, FT: 62.2%. with TBB Trier playing 32 games: 6.3ppg, 3.0rpg, 1.8apg, FGP: 39.9%, 3PT: 28.6%, FT: 63.6%. He played college basketball at College of the Sequoias Junior College:from 1996-1998 and then transferred to Metropolitan St. (NCAA2): and played there from 1998-2000. He started his professional basketball career in 2001 in the Uk for the Solent Stars (United Kingdom-NBLConf): 31 points, 8 rebounds and 7 assist. In 2002-2003, came his first tour of duty in Germany for BSG Grevenbroich (Germany-Regionalliga): 24.7ppg, 9.2rpg, 6.7apg, 3.5spg. In 2003-2004, he played for the Ulriken Eagles (Norway-BNLO): Regular Season: 14 games: 20,1ppg, 8,1rpg, 2,5apg, 2,9spg, 0,4bpg.In 2004-2005, he was back in Germany playing for BSG Grevenbroich (Germany-2. can Bundesliga): 30 games: Score-5(26.0ppg), 7.7rpg, Ast-4(5.4apg), 1.7spg, 2FGP: 55.5%, 3FGP: 33.3%, FT: 63.6%. In 2005-2006, he played for InterCollege Etha Engomis (Cyprus-A1): only pre-season, then joined COOCOON Baskets Weiden (Germany-2.Bundesliga, starting five): 8 games: 15.6ppg, 5.9rpg, 2.0apg, 1.6spg, 2FGP: 51%, left in Jan.’06 and later that month signed at Eisbaeren Bremerhaven (Germany-1.Bundesliga): 21 games: 7.8ppg, 2.6rpg, 1.8apg, 2FGP: 56.5%. In 2006-2007, he played for the Eisbaeren Bremerhaven (Germany-1.Bundesliga): 31 games: 5.7ppg, 2.0rpg, 2.2apg, 2FGP: 43.1%, 3FGP: 25.0%, FT: 55.9%. In 2007-2008, he played for USC Heidelberg (Germany-ProA, starting five): 14 games: 14.4ppg, 4.4rpg, Assists-5(4.6apg), 2.3spg, 2FGP: 54%, 3FGP: 27.3%, FT: 58.5%, left in Jan.’08 due to shoulder injury, in Feb.’08 moved to Digibu Baskets Paderborn (Germany-1.Bundesliga, starting five): 13 games: 6.3ppg, 3.0rpg, 2.4apg, 2FGP: 51.8%, 3PT: 14.3%, FT: 70.0%. In 2009-2010, he played in the PRO A for Proveo Merlins Crailsheim (Germany-ProA, starting five): 27 games: 16.9ppg, 7.1rpg, Assists-3(5.4apg), 1.1spg, FGP: 51.8%, 3PT: 25.0%, FT: 62.8%. He played for TBB Trier from 2010-2012. He spoke to German Hoops about his season in Grevenbrocih.
John thanks for talking to German Hoops. I wish it was under nicer circumstances, but every now and then it is correct to let a player to give his side of a story. You were recently released by Regionaliga team New Energie Elephants Grevenbroich. This a team where you started your career with in Germany in 2002. Was there ever a sign at the start that this season that you might not finish the season with the team?
I’m sure it was tough for both sides, I am mean it wasn’t as I had visioned it to be like. The last time I played there everything was very professional to practices, game preparations, as well of other things so it was very difficult for me. I am sure they had higher expectations as well, but at the same time when two sides can’t meet in the middle then someone has to go.
You were averaging 18 points, six rebounds and three assists, but as a player that has so much experience having played many seasons in the Beko BBl, you were recently released. Can you understand why a player of your stature could be released?
Well to be honest individually I wasn’t having a good season and they wanted more points from me, but in my eyes when a team is filled with two other guys who have first league experience, other guys who played at the pro A level as well then everyone’s numbers should be higher, but as the American I understand the business.
You showed your thanks to the city of Grevenbroich and your teammates, but were you back stabbed by the coach Hartmut Ohmen?
I wouldn’t call it back stabbed but I think there were a lot of dishonest things that got reported and a lot of things I had to take the blame because coming from a higher league I had higher expectations which is understandable. I mean when a coach comes to practice once a week, and when you have 6 players showing up to practice then how can you expect me or other players to perform on a high level. But Grevenbroich will always have a special place in my heart more so the time when we were successful with Ralphi Wilder
Was the relationship between you and him from the start. Was it strained at the start or did it get worse as the season went on?
My relationship off the court was decent, but on the court it was hard because of differences of opinions from him not showing up to practices, or even putting in systems to help us out in game situations. I mean it is difficult to win when your coach isn’t there at all practices and when you don’t know one´s system when the game starts.
According to eurobasket sources, he didn´t let you play your natural position of point guard and has bashed you in a fan forum. How would you like to respond to this and just give your side of the story?
Yea for sure it was tough not playing my position. I mean I played point guard my whole professional career and I had to get used to doing something new. I just don’t know many people that bring over an American know what he does well and ask him to do something else that he had never did. As far as the fan forum goes I just found it very unprofessional to talk about players and team information with fans on a public forum in which they voice their opinion about the team you manage and coach.
How much has this experienced hurt you since you had two great season early in your career in Grevenbroich and how has it made you stronger?
Like I said I know I had higher expectations because of what I accomplished in my career and that’s fine, but I think I was treated unfair especially with the situation that was in front of me and someone had to take the blame and it happened to be me. It has made me stronger and he made me realize who was actually a real person and who was always fake to my face.
You came out of retirement to help your ex team Grevenbroich with their aspirations of moving up to the Pro B. Is your professional basketball playing career now completely over?
Yea I did this as a favor and for the wrong reasons and yes I’m done playing for sure now lol. I know I pulled a Brett Favre before but this is it for sure.
You have spoken highly of German Farid Sadek. Is he a guy that will forever be your friend? How was the experience with him as teammates on and off the court enriching?
Farid is great on and off the court and is a very talented point guard who should be playing on a higher level. He was a stand up guy throughout this season and we will stay in contact for sure. My experience playing was great, he is a fierce competitor and I have nothing but love for him for sure.
Talented Nasir Robinson played at Pittsburgh(NCAA) and you got to see him play this season often. Is he a guy who should be in a higher league?
I have not saw him play but I read he went to a great university and I wish him all the success in Grevenbroich.
Grevenbroich has a record of 7-4 at the moment. Where do you see the club at the end of the season?
I think they have the players to finish in the top 4 and if they come out and play hard on both sides of the ball like they are capable of doing and play together then they should have a great rest of the season.
I hope very much that you will stay in Germany like many other ex players like Tyrone Mccoy or Calvin Oldham that went into coaching. Will coaching in Germany be one of your bigger priorities?
I would love to stay involved in coaching somewhere, but it is understood my reputation as a player isn’t the best. But I have a lot of knowledge of the game, I know the leagues after having played in Germany for 9 years but it is a business but I will be involved in basketball in America or in Europe some kind of way for sure.
How vivid is the 2011 Slam dunk contest in Trier still in your mind? What is your nicest memory of it?
Yes Trier will always have a special place in my heart. It was special that year for sure because the dunk contest happened that year in Trier and it was cool being part of the all star game festivities and putting on a show for the fans.
What is your opinion of the Beko BBL bringing in professional dunkers the last two seasons making it harder for Beko BBL players to win.
Honestly I don’t like that idea. I mean it is the all star day for a reason, allow the best Dunkers of the BBL to participate, I think when you allow professional Dunkers in there it takes away the significance of it being there as a player.
What was the last DVD movie that you saw?
The last DVD I saw was he got game with Ray Allen.
Thanks John for the chat.