Dragons Rhöndorf

KJ Sherrill (Dragons Rhondorf) Aaron Nelson is a great player, but I don’t feel pressured to follow in his footsteps

KJ Sherrill is a 26 year old 203cm forward from Cleveland,North Carolina that is embarking into his third professional season. He started his basketball career at Charlotte (NCAA) in 2009 where he played until 2012 playing a total of 75 NCAA games. He then moved to Augusta St. (NCAA2) and as a senior played 32 games averaging 14.7ppg, 6.2rpg, 1.4apg, FGP: 55.7%, 3PT: 22.2%, FT: 76.7%. He started his professional career with the Cuxhaven BasCats (Germany-ProA) playing 27 games averaging 7.9ppg, 4.3rpg, FGP: 48.0%, 3PT: 38.2%, FT: 60.8%. Last season he played with the  Hertener Loewen Basketball (Germany-Regionalliga) playing 18 games averaging 14.8ppg, 8.1rpg, 1.1apg, FGP: 53.3%, 3PT: 50.0%, FT: 68.4%. He spoke to German Hoops earlier in the summer about basketball.

KJ thanks for talking to German Hoops. Where are you at the moment and how is your summer going?

I am currently in Germany visiting my girlfriend; this summer has been pretty good so far.

You already have returned to Germany in early July shortly after July 4th. Usually Americans don´t return until training camp in August. Are you back early this season because you are extra focused on having a great third professional season with the Dragons Rhondorf?

I am back to Germany this early so that I and my girlfriend can take a few trips before I have to report to Rhöndorf. I am much focused as well to start my 3rd season with the Dragons.

Congrats on signing with the Dragons Rhondorf of the Pro B. How was this summer´s transfer period after having a very strong season with Herten. Was Rhondorf the best offer that you got?

The summer was a bit stressful not knowing which team I would sign with next. But I continued to work out daily and remain positive knowing that my agent would find me a good team, which he did. So I’m very thankful to be a part of the dragons.

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The Uni Riesen Leipzig Led By Cardell Mcfarland Live Another Day Escaping Rhondorf 85-73

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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.

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The Canadian Sensation Mike Lucier Leads Rhondorf to 80-78 Play Down Grind Out Win Over Nordlingen

If one had been away from the Dragon Dome the last few weeks concentrating more on the fabulous and always exciting March Madness in the States where a team like South Carolina stole the hearts of possibly even some loyal North Carolina Tar Heel fans or been outside enjoying the early spring weather and returned back to basketball in Rhondorf this last weekend, two major things would have caught the observer. The first most drastic item that one would not have seen cleaning up and dominating the paint area on both ends of the court would have been the big Dawg from Bloom Township, Illinois Aaron Nelson. He had abruptly departed from the club and returned back to the States listing homesickness as the reason. For many this may have been a true fact, but for others there seemed to be more behind the surface that just wasn´t communicated and for the club a very bitter event since now the club was missing 23 points and 12 rebounds a game and had to get more input from every other player under the boards. The other major development was not seeing a tall man in black, for some possibly a younger version of a Dirk Bauermann in attire as the GQ like figure of head coach Matthias Sonnenschein was missing as he had been dismissed by management and replaced by experienced Dutch man Thomas Roijakkers who´s name is familiar as his brother Johan coaches 2010 Eurochallenge winner BG Goettingen. Thomas Roijakkers last coached Pro B north team Stahnsdorf and gained further experience with Pro B team Recklingshausen from 2013-2015. He is known for his knowledge, work ethic and versatility. He is a specialist regarding digital video team and player scouting / analyzing. He also has a lot of experience in individual skill development and guidance of players. The Dragons Rhondorf had started off poorly in the play downs with a 0-2 record having lost to Lich and Leipzig and now were meeting the Giants Nordlingen who had a 1-1 record having beat Leipzig and lost to Lich. The only good news for Dragon fans was that they had their pro B basketball destiny in their own hands as they had two wins more than Leipzig and would fight for that last Pro B spot for next season as Lich is on it´s way to staying in the Pro B having two wins more than Rhondorf. After 40 minutes Aaron Nelson still wasn´t there, but new head coach Thomas Roijakkers still was and was very happy having been able to win his first game as Dragon head coach 80-78 over the Giants Nordlingen who´s come back attempt fell short in the last seconds.

Mike Lucier postgame interview

Postgame interview: Mike Lucier (left) and Miles Schmidt-Scheuber

After the victory game top scorer Mike Lucier who dropped 25 points and had 11 rebounds was thrilled about the win as well as relieved as the last weeks have been difficult with so much drama within the organization. “It has been tough as we didn´t want to be in this position now when the season started. We all have jobs to do and know that we have to win. I just try to stay focused and help the team win. I have a bigger role now. We started strong in the first and third quarters, but not in the second and fourth quarters where we were slowed down. We had too many break downs, but at the end of the day we needed a win and I am happy that we got it”, stressed Dragons Rhondorf forward Mike Lucier. The Giants Nordlingen had to fight back the whole game and could have won it at the end, but came up short. With all their bad luck this season, it seemed only normal that they wouldn´t grind out the win. “It was a tough battle and we fought until the end, but we just couldn´t get the win. We really wanted to stay in the league, but couldn´t make shots. I felt that we moved the ball well, hit open shots and adjusted well to their zone. We didn´t start well at all and at times played selfish which resulted in fast break baskets for them. They had too many runs that we couldn´t rebound from”, added Giants Nordlingen forward Adrein Coleman.

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No Early Valentines Day On Viktor Frankl-Maus´s Mind As He Slams Dagger Into TG s.Oliver Wurzburg´s Hearts Leading the Dragons Rhondorf To 84-77 Win

The expressions on the faces of the players of the Dragons Rhondorf and TG s.Oliver Wurzburg were like night and day last weekend as the two teams fighting for the right to play in the playoffs continued with the Dragons Rhondorf losing a bitter game in Frankfurt while the Bavarian team Wurzburg slapped the top ranked team PS Karlsruhe. After the 91-82 loss in Frankfurt, Rhondorf beast Aaron Nelson was lying on the floor in front of his own bench feeling as worn out as a antelope who has been chased around and beaten all day long by cheetah´s in the jungle. Nelson had had another typical day at the office scoring 33 points and securing nine rebounds, but still lost on the road in Frankfurt. About 120 kilometers away TG s.Oliver Wurzburg were having a serious slugfest with the top ranked Pro B team PS Karlsruhe and somehow managed a 89-86 win where they took apart the leagues number one defense scoring 53 points in the first half. In the fourth quarter, they showed real heart and discipline withstanding all PS Karlsruhe comebacks never letting them get the lead back and also showed their German consistency as they had the majority of the load scoring most points as the American tandem of Barksdale and Sanford produced only one bucket. Both teams need wins as the season is winding down with a month left and both teams are fighting for a playoff place as both have 14 points and identical 7-10 records, but Rhondorf currently has the eighth and last playoff spot while Wurzburg was in ninth place. The Dragons Rhondorf won the first meeting of the season on the road 81-71 as they had their problems rebounding and taking care of the ball, but the fact that Wurzburg connected only on two tries from downtown sealed their fate. TG s.Oliver Wurzburg took the court in Rhondorf wanting revenge for their loss at home while the Dragons wanted to take advantage of their home court and fans saw an exciting basketball game that was filled with runs and a massive comeback by the Bavarian team, but the home team Dragons Rhondorf had nerves of steel in crunch-time overcoming TG s.Oliver Wurzburg 84-77.

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After the win, a thrilled Mike Lucier who hit the last four free throws of the game explained the secret to sweeping TG s.Oliver Wurzburg. “We both needed the win and we knew that they would come out and play well. They fought well and made a nice run at the end, but we did a good job not losing control and closing out the game strong. Viktor Frankl-Maus was huge at the end, getting the steal, basket and making the no look pass to Wendeler for the basket. He has been doing it all season long and we can always count on him when he has the ball in his hands”, stressed Dragons Rhondorf forward Mike Lucier. After the contest a disappointed Vincent Sanford was trying to analyze why they lost and also found some positives. “We had problems executing and finishing around the basket. We didn´t do a good job handling their runs and had bad phases on defense. I thought we played defense as hard as we could and did a pretty good job on Aaron Nelson”, stressed ex Georgetown guard Vincent Sanford. “This was a super win and I am very happy. We had some dumb mistakes, but tomorrow nobody will remember that. It was important that we won and stayed together without Aaron Nelson who left the game hurt”, stressed Dragons Rhondorf CEO Boris Kaminski.

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Travis Thompson Owns The Parkling Lot Charging The Fraport Skyliners Juniors Past The Dragons Rhondorf 92-81

In his short basketball career Rilwan Bakara has really gotten around the block as he was never comfortable playing at one school as he bounced around the States playing for schools like Columbus State Community College (NJCAA), Danville Area Community College (NJCAA), Campbellsville (NAIA) and Texas Wesleyan (NAIA) before turning professional two seasons ago. Now in his third professional season, the 26 year old 201cm forward that hails from Chicago is already playing with his fifth professional team with the Fraport Skyliners Juniors. After playing his rookie season in Germany with  TuS Breckerfeld (Germany-2.Regionalliga) where he played 18 games averaging 19.9ppg, and 10.5rpg where he was able to get a first feel for the European game, he moved to BK Iskra Svit (Slovakia-SBL) last season where he played 18 games averaging 11.2ppg, 6.8rpg, FGP: 57.8%, FT: 58.5% and demonstrated further that he was prepared for tasks in higher leagues. This season the big American has really been active as he started the season with Pernion Urheilijat Basket (Finland-1st Division playing 2 games averaging 20.0ppg, 11.0rpg, 1.0spg, in Oct.’16 moved to Union de Santa Fe (Argentina-TNA), where he played 17 games averaging 4.5ppg, 3.4rpg. Usually when you leave a misfortunate situation, you want to get back on the floor as quickly as possible and forget the last experience, but just doing that was a problem the last weeks as he wasn´t cleared to play for Frankfurt, so sitting around and watching the Frankfurt BBL team battle and new team Fraport Skyliners Juniors duel against opposing teams was a difficult matter for him to accept and adjust to, but last weekend he finally made his debut in Germany scoring four points and hauling down two rebounds in a bitter 80-74 loss at Weissenhorn. Bakare was ready to finally make his home debut, but had to match his skills with the top power forward in the Pro B and good buddy Aaron Nelson who was his teammate in high school in Illinois as both the Fraport Skyliners Juniors and Dragons Rhondorf were looking to rebound from loses and Frankfurt came away with the big 92-81 loss.

After the tough loss, Nelson was sitting on the floor looking as pooped as if Shaq had just run full speed around the court, but he still had a smile ready for his small daughter who had made the trip to watch big daddy play and was disappointed at the loss, but blessed that he could play against friend Rilwan Bakare. “It was fun playing against Rilwan. Who would have thought 7-8 years ago that we would both be playing in Germany one day. It has been a great experience for both of us in Germany. He has gotten stronger and I know his strength and weaknesses. Not only he made me tired today, but the whole Frankfurt team. Rilwan is a great player”, stressed Dragons Rhondorf forward Aaron Nelson. After making his home debut and winning, Bakare strolled over to a battered Nelson in front of the Dragons bench and the American looked a lot fresher than Nelson and was also blessed to finally play against his ex teammate. “I knew from day one when I arrived in Frankfurt where Aaron played and had marked this day on the calendar. When I was playing in Finland earlier this season, I always watched his games. I haven´t seen him play in 7-8 years, but he has gotten better, but is still the old Aaron Nelson in that he is still a dominant player. I like how Rhondorf gives him the freedom to shoot the ball”, stressed Chicago and Fraport Skyliners Junior Rilwan Bakare.

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Aaron Nelson Leads The Dragons Rhondorf Past The Uni-Riesen Leipzig 86-76

In the past years the Dragons Rohndorf have had some very tight games in the Pro B against the Giants Nordlingen and Hebeisen White Wings Hanau, but in two contests, the Dragons lost by one point in two exciting and tight affairs and in both games American Cardell Mcfarland was instruemental for leading his teams past the Dragons Rhondorf. Back in the 2013-2014 season, Mcfarland who was playing his second professional season after playing in Romania was tearing up the German pro B that led him to being second in scoring and assists after the season. Against Rhondorf, Mcfarland steered the Giants Nordlingen past Rhondorf 73-72 as the American hammered home 26 points and in the 2014-2015 season, the last time Mcfarland visited the Dragon Dome, he helped lead Hanau to a 65-64 victory as he had 13 points. Last season Mcfarland played in England for Bristol and started this season with the Sheffield Sharks on a short term contract and moved to the Uni-Riesen Leipzig with the hope of being their season savior. “I feel like I’m just the missing piece of the team. My main goal is to lead another team in Germany into the playoffs. Show my leader ship abilities no matter what situation I’m in I can win. Obviously if we win I will be a huge part of that and individually success will come. I also want help the younger guys on the team reach they full potential and hopefully the get better from me being around”, stressed Cardell Mcfarland. Mcfarland was back in Rhondorf a little more than two years after helping Hanau beat Rhondorf and was looking to up his career record against Rhondorf to 3-1 while the Dragons Rhondorf were looking to take their momentum from the big 87-63 win against FC Bayern Munich and continue to defend with a passion and play with character and start of 2017 with a bang and did winning their second game in a row holding off the Uni-Riesen Leipzig 86-76 who lost their second game in a row. Mcfarland was unable to find to his old lethal scoring ways in the Pro B finishing with 10 points and two assists and shot 40% from the field, but teammate Terrence Billups isn´t worried about the American breaking out and finding back to his old habits. “We had a seven man rotation which was tough, but we didn´t come to terms with their zone defense. Mcfarland is good for us. He is smart, experienced and controlled. He brings the toughness and game IQ that we need. It was only his first game with us, he will do just fine”, warned Terrence Billups. The team mentality of the Dragons Rhondorf seems to be on a healthy way again and the club showed against the Uni-Riesen Leipzig that when they play together on both ends of the court, they are able to beat anyone in the Pro B. The Dragons Rhondorf as usual had a big production day from Aaron “the big dawg” Nelson, but also got quality games from Michael Lucier and Viktor-Frankl-Maus as well as solid minutes from Patrick Reus and Anton Geretzki. “We played hard and focused. In the past games where we were struggling, we were thinking too much, but tonight we played hard, had fun and made the right decisions. We knew that Mcfarland is a good player and that he could change the game. We stayed focused on him for 40 minutes and didn´t give him anything easy”, stated Canadian Michael Lucier.

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Cory Remekun (Helios Suns Domzale) Quantez Robertson Is Usually Always In The Right Spot Defensively

Cory Remekun is a 25 year old 203cm forward from Mesquite, Texas playing his fourth professional season and first with Helios Suns Domzale (Slovenia-Liga NovaKBM). Last season he played with  Rogaska Crystal (Slovenia-Telemach League, starting five): 26 games: 11.6ppg, Reb-5(7.8rpg), Blocks-1(1.3bpg), FGP: 65.0%, FT: 64.6%. He started his basketball career in 2009 with St.Louis (NCAA) playing  a total of 133 NCAA games and as a senior played  33 games averaging 4.8ppg, 3.0rpg, 1.1bpg. He started his professional basketball career in 2013 with the Dragons Rhoendorf (Germany-ProB) playing 25 games averaging 13.4ppg, 8.1rpg, 1.4apg, 1.0spg, Blocks-1(2.6bpg), FGP: 52.9%, 3PT: 22.2%, FT: 74.2%. In the 2014-2015 season he played for AE Nea Kifisia Dimoulas Athens (Greece-A1): 10 games: 2.0ppg, 1.3rpg: 9 games: 2.2ppg, 1.4rpg, in Feb.’15 agreed terms with HKK Siroki Primorka (Bosnia-Division I): 21 games: 7.5ppg, Reb-1(8.2rpg), 1.0apg, Blocks-1(2.0bpg), FGP: 56.6%, FT: 49.2%. He spoke to German Hoops about basketball.

Thanks Cory for talking to German Hoops. It Christmas time and how is the holiday season different in Slovenia the last two years in comparison to the way it was in Germany, Greece and Bosnia where you played many years ago.

No problem, it’s real nice in the capital around this time of the year. I like the atmosphere, it’s pretty similar to some of the cities in Germany during Christmas time.

Welcome back to Germany. As a rookie you played for the Dragons Rhoendorf (Germany-ProB) playing 25 games averaging 13.4ppg, 8.1rpg, 1.4apg, 1.0spg, Blocks-1(2.6bpg), FGP: 52.9%, 3PT: 22.2%, FT: 74.2%. When you think of that experience, what is the first thing comes to mind when hearing the phrase Dragons Rhondorf?

Great organization and fans. They really look after you there. I really appreciated my teammates and coaches helping me adjust to Europe.

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