Lorne Jackson is a 25 year old 188cm point guard from Simi Valley, California playing his third professional season and first with the ScanPlus Baskets Elchingen (Germany-ProB). He played at Pepperdine (NCAA) from 2008-2013 playing a total of 125 NCAA games and as a senior he played 30 games averaging 13.6ppg, 3.7rpg, 2.8apg, 1.5spg, FGP: 49.7%, 3PT: 29.1%, FT: 78.6%. He started his professional career in 2013 with the Canton Charge (D-League) and last season played in Oman. He spoke to German Hoops before the game against the Fraport Skyliners Juniors.
Lorne thanks for talking to German Hoops. A tough 99-93 loss last weekend against Weissenhorn. The Scanplus Baskets gave up 13 points in the first quarter, but 86 points in the last three quarters. Why did the defense breakdown in the last 30 minutes?
We played a good game but we had a defensive let down in the second half giving away too many easy shots and too many offensive rebounds. To put it simply they just outworked us in the second half
How much does it annoy you that The Scanplus Baskets shot 55% combined from the field and outside, but you still lose the ball game?
Its tough that we shot well but still lost the game. We just didn’t make some of the plays that we needed to make in order to win the game.
You play with a handful of talented German guys and play against talented Germans every weekend, but where would you rate the game and skill of Joschka Ferner who put up 37 points and already played Eurocup with ratiopharm Ulm when he was 16 years old. How much potential does he have?
Didn’t really know who he was until we played against them.but I’m not going to lie he played a good game. He will have a good future if he continues to develop and shoot the ball like he did
Every week you battle against an American point guard. Last weekend it was Christopher Anderson who really filled up the stat sheet with 15 points and 14 assists. How challenging was it battling him and how did you come to terms with his speed?
I’ve known Chris and his family for a long time so it wasn’t my first time playing against him. We played against each other in college too so we are familiar with each others games. It was fun getting to play against him. He is going be a real good player throughout his career.
The Scanplus Baskets have made the playoffs, but how do you rate the regular season in general after a very good 5-1 start?
I think overall we have had a good season. For a team that is in its first year in pro B not many expected us to make the playoffs. Although we feel like we should have had a better overall record we are still in the playoffs and that’s all that we could really ask for.
Do you feel like the two bitter close loses to Lich and Dresden after the good start put a damper into the team self confidence at that point of the season?
I don’t think it hurt our teams self confidence but those two losses are ones that we definitely should have came out with the win. We lost those games in the last minute of each game and all we could do is learn from those mistakes and move on to the next game.
Did the Scanplus Baskets underachieve a bit as it had a very talented roster with a good mix of young and old?
I don’t think that Scanplus underachieved. We have had an alright season this year. Having new players come in and out having half the team out with injury or stop playing midseason was a little tough to adjust to at first.
The team has averaged giving up 74 points a game. Do you feel as if the team potential on the defensive side still hasn´t been realized?
Yes I think that we still have a lot more work to do on the defensive end and that is something that we will be focusing on more heading into the playoffs.
With Germans Brian Butler and Filmore Beck, you have two very talented German veterans. How important have they been to the team success and what do you appreciate most about their games?
They have been huge for our team´s success. Brian’s athleticism and ability to play multiple positions has helped us tremendously. He started the season out playing the 4 but more recently has been playing the small forward where he was able to have some of the best games of the season. And Filmore has helped us as well. He is without a doubt one of the best shooters in Pro B and has shown that in a few games this season. Its good having him on the court because he is a player that is able to score no matter where he is on the floor.
You are the team leader and leading scorer. Have you been more a vocal leader, leader by example or a bit of both?
I would say that I am definitely more of a leader by example and I always have been the type to lead by example rather than to be the outright outspoken leader. My actions on the floor best help me to try and motivate my team to try and win games
You are a scoring point guard, but also belong to the top defenders in the German Pro B. What do you feel is a hidden strength in your game that still doesn´t get noticed the way it should?
I think that my ability to rebound the ball is a hidden strength of mine. I have had some games where I was in the double digits rebounding along with other games where I was close to that mark. Me being a bigger point guard I am able to fight off players who are typically bigger than me.
You average 2,6 turnovers a game. Is this the biggest building block in your game that you need to improve?
I think my turnovers are something that will be a focus for me moving on in my career. Not only that but also trying to increase my assist number to get the best out of the team that I possibly can.
The last regular season game is against the Fraport Skyliners Juniors on the road. What memories do you have of the 85-75 win earlier in the regular season?
I just remember us coming together as a team and pulling out the win even though we struggled with our shooting percentage pretty much the entire game.
The Scanplus Baskets had 30 rebounds more than Frankfurt. Was that the best rebounding game of the season?
It would probably be the best rebounding game of the season. I cant think of a game where the rebound numbers were that much in our favor.
In this game both teams will be motivated to get a win and go with confidence into the playoffs. Frankfurt was without big men Johannes Richter and Tim Oldenburg who should play this time around. Will controlling the boards and shooting better than 11% be they keys to winning?
Controlkling the boards will definitely be a key for us to winning this game coming up. Limiting there offensive rebounds and trying to get out in transition is what is big for us. And of course we are going to have to shoot pretty decent from the field as a team if we want to win.
Last season you played in Oman. What kind of experience was that for you and did you sleep in any palaces?
It was just an overall good experience for me. I was able to play with some good veterans out there and just got to experience what ball was like in the Middle East. We also won that championship while I was out there so that was big for me in starting out my first entire season as a pro.
As a rookie you were on the roster of the Canton Charge, but never played a minute. How tough was your rookie season and moving on and moving forward in your career?
My rookie season in the D League was definitely tough. Seeing how many talented players were just on my team alone let alone in the league it opens your eyes to help you realize how hard you actually have to work. The D League is definitely a very competitive league though.
In 2013 you played at the NBA Pro Summer League in Las Vegas (Washington Wizards): 2 games: 1.5rpg, 1.0apg, 1.5spg. What things did you notice when playing against the other young players that you still needed to develop in your game to make the next jump as a professional?
One thing that I realized I needed to work on was that I needed to be able to shoot better at the NBA 3. Its very different from the college 3 which was what I was pretty much only used to at the time. What I also felt I needed to develop was to just think of the game as an NBA player. It’s a little bit different than that of Europe or pretty much anywhere else. You are treated and therefore expected to perform to that close of the typical NBA player.
You played at Pepperdine from 2007-2012. You had some talented teams, but never made any noise come tournament time. What do you believe was missing from the teams for further success?
I don’t know exactly what was missing. Like you said we has some very very talented teams while I was at Pepperdine. I think the only thing that I can say we were missing is a few more important parts in the depth of our front court.
You played under Tom Ashbury and Marty Wilson. How did these two coaches groom and prepare you best for a professional career?
I learned a lot from both of those coaches. Coach Asbury was of course more old fashioned than any other coach that I had played for before so I got used to a lot having to be patient when it comes to running a team. When it comes to Asbury I only was able to play for him for one year while he was head coach but under him he really helped me in learning the keys to becoming a good point guard not only in college but also as a pro because he also played the point in his playing days.
When you were a senior center Brendan Lane had to sit out due to transfer rules. He didn´t play much at UCLA, but flourished at Pepperdine and now is one of top five centers in German Beko BBL. Did you notice then in practices that he was a special player?
Yes I knew from back when Brendan was at UCLA that he was a special player. I was close with all the UCLA guys so I knew him a little bit before he came to Pepperdine. But he is a very talented player, it would have been very special if I would have been able to suit up with him when he was eligible to play at Pepp
Your ex teammate Mychel Thompson has had some short stints in the NBA and currently is playing in the D-league with Santa Cruz. Do you see him becoming a regular NBA player down the road?
I definitely think that Mychel can become a regular NBA player down the road. Not only can he shoot the ball but his athleticism not many people know about. Along with that he is a player that I am sure no coaches have a problem in coaching.
You had many memorable games with Pepperdine, but where do you rank the 58-56 win against Washington State your senior year where you hit two three´s at the end of regulation and a lay in with 12 seconds to go?
The Washington State game definitely ranks in my top 3 games in my Pepperdine career not only because I hit the game winner but because at the time we were having a battle with the Pac 12 conference versus the West Coast conference and we were one of the only teams in out conference to beat one of the teams from the Pac 12
Who was the toughest player that you battled in the NCAA that is in the NBA today?
The toughest player I had to play against would have to be a tie between Patty Mills when he played at St. Marys along with Jimmer Fredette when he was at BYU.
Recently ESPN made a top 100 greatest NBA players of alltime poll putting Lebron at #3 before legends Larry Bird, Magic Johnson and BIll Russell. Do you see that as being justified?
I don’t see that being justified at all. I don’t know how you can put Lebron before Magic Johnson and Bill Russell period. Two of the greatest winners in sports history.
What was the last movie that you saw?
That last movie I saw was The Hateful Eight and it was a pretty dam good movie.
Thanks Lorne for the chat.