The NBA star is on the three-point line. His eyes are focusing the basket. He is deeply concentrated and in the next moment, he will throw the 3 points. Suddenly, someone comes from the left. Dennis tries to react, but the ball is gone. Loud laughter is what follows.
The player from the world’s leading basketball league is home to visit Braunschweig and his boys. Despite his success, he still remembers where he came from.
„I always know where my roots are.“
Very likable. And for us, it is a good opportunity to head him off and chat a little.
He was 11 when he started to play basketball. At 14 he started to take it seriously. At 19 he plays in the Basketball Bundesliga (BBL, engl. Federal Basketball League). A short time later he joins the NBA. Within eight years, he did what millions dream of. But Dennis does not yet see himself at the end of his career but is actually just at the beginning. He would like to continuously evolve, and improve his skills every day a little more ... just like we are.
Dennis Schröder is likable, knows what he wants and has achieved a lot in his young years.
Dennis, please tell us how you came to play basketball:
„Oh, I was just as every kid having fun with a ball (laughing). I always played in school breaks with my friends, I think I was 11 when I started. But at 14 it really hit me and I became very ambitious and took playing basketball to another level. I joined a club for basketball and put out some feelers on it. I tasted blood and from then on played in several teams at the same time. That was a great time for me.“
When did you become a pro?
„I was about 19. I became a player at the BBL and was in the national under-20 team and ended up playing at the European finals in Slovenia.“
What happened from there?
„Well, what happened? Good question. In 2014, I was named best German junior player, became an offer from the Atlanta Hawks in the United States and suddenly I played in the NBA.“
With your height of 1,88 m (6″2) you are not one of the tallest guys in basketball, right?
How did you still manage to meet all those international NBA stars at eye level?
„What are you saying, do you want to call me short? No, jokes aside, if you are disciplined and work hard every day you just improve. That’s it. You have to know your weaknesses as well as your strengths and learn how to work with what you are given.“
Now the really important questions: Are you a fan of chewing gum?
„Of course, I am! I was chewing gum even before I was able to think and I do it definitely prior to every game. It gives me a good feeling and helps me to focus. And your brand of chewing gum I know by Andrej, of course. We know each other, how should it be otherwise, from basketball. Once in a while, he was my opponent on the court when I was still playing for the Braunschweiger Phantoms.“
Which flavor do you like most?
Seems to be a flavor for athletes.
Andrej’s favorite is also Elderflower-Mint. Crazy.
Dennis, thank you very much for your time and all the success in the world for you!