There is one thing you can´t take away from Vincent Sanford and that is his unending drive like a starved kitten who is shyly and timidly strolling down a city alley looking for any tiny scraps of food preferably tuna fish or it´s abandoned mother to keep chipping away at not only being the best player that he possibly can, but too also never lose that fierce desire to play at the best level even if it has been a slow process. He definitely doesn´t have the same route like a Malcolm Delaney or Brian Roberts who played at high levels like the easyCredit BBL and then made the jump to the NBA, but the American who lists Mr cross over Kemba Walker as his hardest opponent in the NCAA has had to toil in lower leagues in Europe, but now has reached the EasyCredit BBL in Germany. Sanford is a 26 year old 190cm guard from Lexington, Kentucky that has continued to battle the odds and now with possibly the help of a coaching change with s.Oliver Wurzburg and has reached one of the top leagues in Europe in Germany with the EasyCredit BBL by accident even if he has the talent. Four months ago, the basketball life of Vincent Sanford looked a lot different.
Miles Schmidt-Scheuber interviewing Uni Riesen Leipzig guard and leader Cardell Mcfarland after he dropped 20 points and led a fourth quarter charge beating the Dragons Rhondorf 85-73
If one was given a special helicopter ride as a 50th birthday present from your spouse and you could roam above the quant town of French Lick, Indiana and the tiny town of Rhondorf in Germany and have a nice birds eye view of the territory, one would come to the conclusion that there isn´t much difference between the two. Population wise, French lick boasts 1,941 persons, while Rhondorf has 2,327 people making their home there while from a nature standpoint, there is a lot of greenery to enjoy. The two biggest differences between the two places is that French Lick has no major body of water while Rhondorf sits on the scenic and famous Rhein river that displays historic castles and many boats while French Lick has for many oldschool basketball fans the best basketball player that ever graced the planet with Larry Bird who grew up there and still has a residence there. After the last bitter loss in Nordlingen in the Pro B playdowns where the Dragons Rhondorf shot a miserable 30% from the parking lot and got the big goose egg of 0/16 from outside from their top players Canadian Mike Lucier, American Will Trawick and German Viktor Frankl- Maus, one could of asked manager Boris Kaminski just how good his connections were in the NBA and if threr was any spare change to book the Bird man for some extra shooting practice last week leading up to the game against the Uni-Riesen Leipzig. The Uni-Riesen Leipzig entered the game having a 2-1 record against the Dragons Rhondorf this season, but had lost the game in Rhondorf earlier in the season. Rhondorf had a four point lead over Leipzig in the Playdowns in the fight to stay in the Pro B and with a victory could have booked their Pro B ticket for next season, but instead have to wait another week and play a do or die game in Lich to see their fate as they fell to the Uni-Riesen Leipzig 85-73. The score definitely didn´t tell the whole story as the Dragons Rhondorf dominated the boards with 15 offensive rebounds and forced their opponent to 24 turnovers and had 8 extra possessions, but that all didn´t matter as they were unable to produce when it counted most in crunch-time. “We really had our destiny in our own hands. We rebounded very well and defended very well also, but we couldn´t take care of the little things. Down by four points, we didn´t execute the game plan and a few of their scores and stops of us suddenly had us down by nine points. We fought really hard, but we were missing experience and a few missed lay ups and turnovers cost us the game”, stressed Viktor Frankl-Maus. After the win, Uni-Riesen Leipzig guard Cardell Mcfarland was very relaxed as if his furious fourth quarter outburst had been the most normal thing and he found the right words in victory. “This was a big game for both teams and we knew that they were a very strong team at home. We came out very focused. Our defense was key for getting the win. Our zone at the end really hurt them. We gave up too many turnovers and offensive rebounds, but in the end all that mattered was the win”, added ex Nordlingen guard Cardell Mcfarland. The game also displayed some BBL faces as Telekom Baskets Bonn players ex Giessen 46er Yorman Polas and ex Fraport Skyliner Johannes Richter took in the game on their free Staurday night. After the game, Richter Joked about the opportunity of having had a Larry Bird flown in for extra shooting practice. “I actually rather would have had Dirk Nowitzki´s shooting coach Holger Geschwindner. It was a very physical and hard fought game. Rhondorf had to win this game. I would have had liked to have seen Valentin Blass play more as he is very good on the pick and roll”, stated ex Bamberg center Johannes Richter.
D´Andre Bullard is a 24 year old 193cm guard from Apopka, Florida playing his second professional season and first with PS Karlsruhe. Last season as a rookie he played for the Leeds Force (United Kingdom-BBL) playing 30 games averaging 7.8ppg, 4.3rpg, 2.7apg, FGP: 39.6%, 3PT: 35.0%, FT: 61.1%. He started his basketball career in 2011 with Florida A&M (NCAA) where he played until 2014 playing a total of 83 NCAA games. In his senior year he played for Virginia Union (NCAA2) playing 18 games averaging 10.4ppg, 3.6rpg, 2.8apg, 1.6spg, FGP: 48.6%, 3PT: 34.5%, FT: 62.2%. He spoke to German Hoops about his basketball career.
D’Andre thanks for talking to German Hoops. Where are you at the moment and how is basketball life for you at the moment?
Hello, I’m Currently In Karlsruhe Germany. Basketball has been Great, I’m loving the city and the fans and Organization are all like one big family.
Your playing your second professional season in Germany with PS Karlsruhe 2 and recently was promoted to being able to play with the Pro B team. What kind of experience has it been playing in Germany this season?
I’ve enjoyed my experience here thus far, the German style of play is a bit different from the states in which I’ve learned a few things and being able to play with the Pro B to get a feel for that level was also enjoyable.
How mentally challenging and tough has this season been for you playing in the German Regionaliga 2 coming from the British BBL which is the first division. Has there been a day where you didn´t have to reassure yourself that you are a lot better than at the level your playing at?
I wouldn’t say it was as challenging because i’m always grateful for the opportunity to play the game I love despite the level. I know where I belong so I just use this season as motivation and try and take advantage of every opportunity that come’s my way so I can one day get to where I want to go.
You have been tearing up the German Regionaliga 2 and recently put up 44 points. Does it feel like you’re a man playing among boys?
My Job is to go out and compete at the highest level no matter who my opponents may be. I treat every game the same and play every game like it’s my last.
Jarvis Davis is a 25 year old 183cm guard from Columbia, South Carolina that completed his second professional season in Germany and first with the Rostock Seawolves averaging 20,4ppg, 4,4rpg and 3,8apg. As a rookie he played for AngraBasket/Vaquinha (Portugal-Proliga) averaging 25,2ppg, 7,5rpg and 2,9apg. He started his basketball career with Cent.Florida (NCAA) in 2010 an dthen moved to Gardner-Webb (NCAA) and as a senior played 35 games averaging 8.8ppg, 3.4rpg, 1.1spg, FGP: 52.4%, 3PT: 36.6%, FT: 87.1%. He spoke to German Hoops about basketball and his season with the RostockWolves
Jarvis thanks for talking to German Hoops. 2017 has come and we are already into April. Did you set any new years resolutions and if you did have to stayed faithful to them in the first few months?
I mean I wouldn’t call it a resolution. But I had a goal to work my hardest to get better every day individually to make myself better. I feel as if I did so. I did what I could control.
The Rostock SeaWolves closed out the regular season with a satisfying win against Recklingshausen 92-76. How important was it getting this win and going into the playoffs with confidence?
Super important. If we lost, we don’t make the playoffs. We win, we were in. So it was simple, WIN or GO HOME!
The club had their best span during the Christmas holidays having a 4 game winning streak, but since then were up and down having a 3-4 record. What do you believe were the positives and negatives in these 7 games?
We could’ve played better defense. I COULD’VE PLAYED BETTER DEFENSE. We could’ve played better offense, I could’ve been more efficient. But sometimes it not positives and negatives. Sometimes as a team, you just don’t have it. Sometimes you work hard that week, but that team is just better. Basketball isn’t rocket science. You win some, you lose some.
Kerry Carter is a 26 year old 188cm guard from West Covina, California that completed his second professional season and first with the Bayer Giants Leverkusen (Germany-ProB). Last season as a rookie he played for Iberostar Tenerife CB Canarias (Spain-Liga Endesa) playing 5 games: 3.2ppg. He started his basketball career with Citrus College and then moved to St.Mary’s, CA (NCAA) where he played 63 NCAA games and as senior played 31 games averaging 12.1ppg, 5.0rpg, 1.5apg, 1.5spg. He currently is tearing up the German Pro B league averaging 29,0ppg and spoke to eurobasket after being ousted by the Astrostars Bochum ending his season.
Kerry thanks for talking to German Hoops. You and the Bayer Giants Leverkusen were dismissed in the first round of the playoffs by Bochum. Are you back in the States or still in Germany? What did you do in your last days in Germany?
I’m still in Germany at the moment. I am not sure what’s next but I’m just training and staying sharp. The season ended too early for my liking, I’m not ready to go into offseason yet.
The Bayer Giants Leverkusen lost 2-1 against Bochum. How disappointing was this for you personally not being able to make a longer run in the Pro B playoffs?
Leverkusen had made it clear that the goal was to win the league and get promoted to Pro A, so losing was obviously a huge disappointment. No discredit to Bochum though, they brought more energy and they were the tougher team. A few plays could have changed the outcome of the series but that’s how it goes.
Courtney Belger is a 27 year old 187cm guard from St Louis that completed his fourth professional season and first with FC Schalke 04 (Germany-ProB). Last season he played with the Itzehoe Eagles (Germany-ProB): 24 games: 12.6ppg, 5.3rpg, 4.5apg, 1.7spg, FGP: 46.0%, 3PT: 20.0%, FT: 65.6% and Kalamunda Eastern Suns (Australia-SBL) playing 14 games: 21.1ppg, 6.3rpg, 4.1apg, Steals-4(3.1spg), FGP: 49.0%, 3PT: 22.4%, FT: 80.8%. He played his first two professional seasons with TV Ibbenbuehren (Germany-Regionalliga). He started his basketball career at Quincy (NCAA2) in 2008 where he played until 2012 playing a total of 113 NCAA 2 games. As a senior he played 27 games averaging 11.3ppg, 5.2rpg, 3.9apg, 1.8spg, FGP: 47.8%, 3PT: 10.5%, FT: 72.0%. He improved his scoring and rebounding average each season. He spoke to German Hoops after the playoff loss to the ScanPlus Baskets ending his season.
Courtney thanks for talking to German Hoops . FC Schalke lost a tough 3 game series to the ScanPlus Baskets. Are you still in Germany or are you already back in the States and how did you spend your last days in Germany?
I’m actually back in Australia with my lady and playing for the eastern suns. My family came to visit me my last week so we just hung out and went to eat etc. My team had a nice end of the year team gathering before we all took off. We had a good time.
How long did it take you to digest the end of the season? What was toughest for you losing game three by 30 points?
It probably took about three days and then will come back later. I’ll just use it for motivation like always. I’m very disappointed to have let the team down with that sad game three disappearing act I displayed.
FC Schalke held opponents to 78 points in the Pro B this season, but the ScanPlus Baskets averaged 83 points in the series. What was most difficult about keeping their offensive arsenal in check?
Not much. We just couldn’t score and execute on our end. When you turn the ball over so much and can’t score it’s easier for the opposition to get out on the fast break.
Matt Reid is a 33 year old 185cm guard that hast he German/American citizenship and recently completed his tenth professional season and first with the Artland Dragons. He started his career with Cerritos JC (NJCAA) and then played two seasons with Cameron (NCAA2) and as a senior played 26 games averaging 20.2ppg, 5.4rpg, 3.3apg, 2.2spg, FGP: 46.1%, 3TP: 36.0%, FT: 81.0%. He turned professional in 2007 and played for the Schwelmer Baskets (Germany-Regionalliga).He then played two seasons with Saarlouis before moving to SC Rasta Vechta where he played from 2010-2012. He then gained further experience with RSV Eintracht Stahnsdorf (Germany-ProB) and Herten(Pro B). He returned back to SC Rasta Vechta in 2014 where he played two more seasons before moving to Artland this season. He spoke to German Hoops after being ousted from the playoffs by Wurzburg.
Matt thanks for talking to German Hoops. The season has come to an end for you and the Artland Dragons. After finishing second in the Pro B north division behind Lok Bernau, how disappointing is it bowing out in the first round to Wurzburg?
It’s always disappointing for the season to end without winning the championship for any team but I am proud how my teammates worked hard all season and battled through injuries and adversity and was able to achieve 2nd place in the north this season.
After winning game one, the Artland Dragons lost game 2 and game 3 ending their season. You said a few months ago in an interview to me that confidence is always good, but too much can be deadly. Do you feel like you had too much confidence as a team heading into game 2?
Too much Confidence was not the problem why we lost game 2, we had a hard working week in practice and was totally focused on winning game 2 in Wurzburg.
You scored only seven points and had 9 assists and shot 1/5 from outside in the first two games. Do you feel like you let the team down a bit in game 2 not being aggressive enough?
I think me being in early foul trouble let my team down in Game 2 but me not being aggressive enough offensively was not a deciding factor for the lost, I was in foul trouble the whole game and 4 fouls in the 18th minute of me being on the court and recieved my 5th foul with 8 minutes to go in the 4th quarter. I thought I did well with not forcing plays and reading the defense well in the series. It was a 5 point game game with 7 minutes to go in the 4th but we had a 3 minute stretch where we struggled to execute in our offense and got outrebounded by 20 as a team and that in my opinion I think was the deciding factor to the game 2 lost.