IC Q & A: RODL RESPONDS
* ... With a 91-69 win at Max Schmeling Arena in Berlin, Germany, on Saturday, ALBA Berlin head coach Henrik Rodl ('93) has his club on a three-game winning streak. Prior to that win to improve to 3-1 in the German League, the former Tar Heel replied to an e-mail from Inside Carolina's Tar Heel Pros News & Notes and answered several questions.
Tar Heel Pros News & Notes: Hello Coach Rodl, thanks for taking the time to answer some questions.
Henrik Rodl: Thank you for writing. It is always good to keep in touch with what is going on in Chapel Hill.
THP N&N: How is your associate head coach Calvin Oldham (Virginia Tech) doing? He told me last year he went to Berlin because he didn't want to miss a chance to work with you.
HR: Coach Oldham does remember you from last year and he and his family are doing well. I call myself lucky to have the opportunity to work with the same staff as last year.
THP N&N: Alba Berlin has a lot of Americans this year. How is your team coming along?
HR: The German League (BBL) has no limits on foreigners. We therefore have a lot of Americans here. Our team currently has six Americans. I believe it is very easy for them to adjust to the city because [Berlin] is so metropolitan and many things resemble [being back] home like restaurants or even movie centers that have movies in English.
We just started the regular season and had a very disappointing loss at home on our season-opening night. We recovered winning the next two on the road and play our next home game on Saturday.
THP N&N: What about ULEB Cup this year? You are in the "Tar Heel Group" (Group C) along with Ed Cota (Jerusalem), Joseph Forte (Siena) and Ademola Okulaja (Khimki, Moscow Region).
HR: We have a very hard group in the ULEB Cup and open up in two weeks (Oct. 30) in Siena, Italy, against Forte's team.
THP N&N: Randy Wiel (now coaching EiffelTowers Den Bosch in Holland) told me he talks to you a lot and that you visited Chapel Hill in the summer as he did. What was it like going back to UNC?
HR: I do keep in touch with Coach Wiel. He taught me a lot while I was still a Tar Heel and he is always a pleasure to catch up with. I again spent a few weeks in Chapel Hill with my family this summer and got a chance to catch up with the coaching staff and old friends.
THP N&N: How much do you miss being a player?
HR: I am very comfortable with my career as a player and have no regrets. Therefore, I feel free to give 100 percent to my new profession. I do love coaching and feel blessed to be able to have the job I have.
THP N&N: Your pro career has always been based in Berlin, Germany. Now in the third year as a coach after 11 years as a player. Do you think you will ever coach outside of Germany? What about In the U.S.?
HR: I feel very much at home in Berlin and hope to stay here many more years, but I also felt at home in Chapel Hill and can certainly imagine going back to the U.S.A. at some point in my life.
THP N&N: North Carolina is in the process of recruiting High School junior phenom Tyreke Evans. He was in Berlin during August at the adidas European Superstar Camp as you were (U.S. HS stars Michael Beasley and Nolan Smith were also there). What did you think about him and his style of play?
HR: Tyreke Evans certainly was impressive here at the camp and I am sure he will have a successful college career.
THP N&N: There is an ad campaign currently going on in Berlin that displays your photo on the waste disposal trucks of team-sponsor ALBA Group. Do you ever see those trucks around town? And what do you think when you see them?
HR: We do see the ALBA trucks going around town sometimes and my friends get a kick about telling me where they last saw me 'picking up trash.'
THP N&N: UNC grad Byron Sanders is playing his first year of pro ball in Hagen, Germany (BBL - 2nd Division, North). If your paths would happen to cross, I'm sure he would get a big thrill meeting you.
HR: Byron played against our farm team (TuS Lichterfelde) from Berlin last weekend in Hagen and he and his team (Phoenix Hagen) did very well. I hope to be in town when they play here (Feb. 3) and will certainly introduce myself.
TEAM LEBO CLAIMS 3-ON-3 TITLE
* ... The opening-night activities for Auburn basketball on Friday included head coach Jeff Lebo and his coaching staff taking part in the inaugural Jeff Lebo Late Night Classic 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament.
"It was a lot of fun and thank goodness it was only halfcourt," Lebo said, at the official team Web site. "My legs are still feeling it."
That was right after Lebo and his coaching staff won 12-8 over the tourney winners, a trio that included two former Auburn players.
Lebo, who recently turned 40, still has some of his old Carolina moves, according to the game recap. He dribbled into the lane and used a ball-fake before releasing a finger-roll layup. The former Tar Heel star also fired in a 15-footer from the left baseline to end the game.
NBA PRESEASON: A LOOK AHEAD
* ... Here's a look at this week's NBA preseason games that are likely to involve former Tar Heels ...
- Washington (Antawn Jamison and Brendan Haywood) @ Charlotte (Raymond Felton and Sean May) 10 a.m. ET
- Utah @ Detroit (Rasheed Wallace)
- Washington (Antawn Jamison Brendan Haywood) vs. Charlotte (Raymond Felton and Sean May) @ Chapel Hill 7 p.m. ET
- Atlanta (Marvin Willams) @ Orlando (Jackie Manuel)
- L.A. Clippers (Jawad Williams) @ Phoenix
- Sacramento vs. L.A. Lakers (Shammond Williams) @ Las Vegas, Nevada
- Houston @ Dallas (Jerry Stackhouse) at NO/Okla. City
- Minnesota vs. Detroit (Rasheed Wallace) @ Grand Rapids, Michigan
- New Jersey (Vince Carter) @ Boston
- Milwaukee (David Noel) @ Houston
- Orlando (Jackie Manuel) vs. Atlanta (Marvin Williams) @ Birmingham, Alabama
- Charlotte (Raymond Felton and Sean May) @ Indiana
- L.A. Clippers (Jawad Williams) vs. L.A. Lakers (Shammond Williams) @ Los Angeles, TNT 10 p.m. ET
- Milwaukee (David Noel) @ Dallas (Jerry Stackhouse)
- Golden State or NO/Okla. City @ L.A. Clippers (Jawad Williams)
- Golden State or NO/Okla. City @ L.A. Lakers (Shammond Williams)
- Philadelphia @ New Jersey (Vince Carter)
- Memphis @ Orlando (Jackie Manuel)
- Atlanta (Marvin Williams) @ Cleveland
- Washington (Antawn Jamison and Brendan Haywood) at Dallas (Jerry Stackhouse)
- Denver @ Milwaukee (David Noel)
- Seattle @ L.A. Clippers (Jawad Williams)
- Denver @ Detroit (Rasheed Wallace
- Phoenix vs. L.A. Lakers (Shammond Williams) @ San Diego, Calif.
*Note: Rashad McCants of Minnesota will not play during the preseason due to a knee injury. Jeff McInnis is under contract with New Jersey, but is not attending training camp at the team's request.
News & Notes Extras: ... Former Tar Heel Brad Daugherty has been hired by ESPN to provide commentary for "NASCAR Countdown." Brent Musburger is also part of the pre-race show that will begin in 2007. ... Former Maryland star Lonny Baxter recently completed a 60-day jail sentence imposed for firing a gun near the White House. Baxter is expected to join Italian League team Montepaschi Siena where his teammates will include former Tar Heel standout Joseph Forte and Clemson's Terrell McIntyre.