Shelton Jackson: Looking for a new challenge
Shelton Jackson, 26, is a Point Guard from Chicago. He has played the last two seasons for Konigs Wusterhausen in the 1.Regio league in Germany. This season he averaged 17 points 7 rebounds and 7 assists. Now back in Chicago he is working on his game and preparing for a new challenge in a higher league.
We caught up with him to see how his summer is going: –
BG: Thanks for joining us at thebettergame. Please tell us who you are and about your basketball journey until signing your first pro contract?
Shelton Jackson: I am Shelton Jackson a Chicago Native, father, college graduate and so much more. I play professional basketball in Europe. I picked up basketball naturally because in the inner city it is the most accessible and easiest sport to play. It requires no money or equipment and basketball is often the only thing to do other than getting into trouble in the neighborhood.
A friend of mine, Jeremiah Moore, introduced me to basketball and got me involved young. Unfortunately, he was killed recently and his memory lives on for me through this game of basketball.
I played junior college basketball at Kankakee Community College where I graduated and while being recruited by NCAA D1 universities, I chose to play at the D2 level for a winning program with more exposure at Mercyhurst University! Great decision, as I excelled there and made the All PSAC team as well as All-Region my senior season. After college, I played for the Sauk Valley Predators before making the jump to Europe with the Konigs Wusterhausen Red Dragons.
BG: What did you learn in Europe?
Shelton Jackson: I have learned a lot about the European culture! I wasn’t expecting the transition to be as easy as it has been coming into Germany. I love the city, the people and the German food. Some people get home sick after a few weeks abroad, but I have been away from my friends and family since college so it doesn’t seem to have a huge effect on me once that basketball is in my hands! I enjoy working with the youth and teaching them the game from an American point of view. As far as my game goes, I have learned that I can adapt to any situation and I continue to grow as a player every year.
BG: What are you looking for next season? How can you help a team?
Shelton Jackson: I’m mostly looking for a team that will be a good fit with my ability and that I can help in any way! I believe I can help many teams in Europe as a 6’3 Point Guard-I bring size, athleticism, and a tenacious defensive presence that many guards lack. I have shown I can score, as well as get my teammates involved in any game, which is exactly what I will do on any level. I’m excited about this off season and ready to see what the future holds.
BG: Berlin Rival team Lok Bernau went 26-0 this year in your league and will move up to Pro B (Germany). What did they do right?
Shelton Jackson: Bernau is a really good team and they deserved the success they had this year! During the off season, their front office did a great job of recruiting quality German players, which turned a really good team into a great one. They will be very successful in the Pro B (Germany) next season just as Wolfenbuettel (regio champs 2015) have.
BG: Have you thought about leagues such as BBL (UK) or other leagues in European countries?
Shelton Jackson: I’ve heard great things about the BBL (UK) and it’s a league that I am interested in; I’m sure my game will transition well in the UK. I’m also interested in Pro A & Pro B (Germany) opportunities. I am open to all European countries and the possibilities ahead.
BG: Chicago Point Guard, Bobby Dixon (Fenerbahce) is a friend of yours. You watched him play in the Eurobasket 2015 for Turkey and recently fall short in the Euroleague finals to CSKA Moscow. What advice has he given you about climbing the ladder in European basketball?
Shelton Jackson: Yeah, I had the opportunity to catch him in action during his first Eurobasket 2015 run and also the latest Euroleague run to the championship. It was unfortunate that they fell short, but the way they fought back to put themselves in a position to win with seconds left in the game speaks volumes about those guys and their coaching staff! He has always told me to stay the course, never stop working and the opportunities will continue to come. The guy was born with the heart of a lion and I’m happy the world is able to connect and see the Uptown Mamba!
BG: Have you received any offers?
Shelton Jackson: No, no offers yet and no agent…
BG: As a Point Guard you lead the team and make your teammates better. Do you feel as though you’ve done this?
Shelton Jackson: Yes, I feel that the last two seasons I have grown at the position understanding timing, personnel, and when to take control of games. I like the European style of play; it compliments my game very well. This season I was able to lead the league in assists, which proves my versatility
BG: What will you work on this summer?
Shelton Jackson: This summer I will continue to work on my ball handling, quickness and extending my shooting range beyond the three-point line.
BG: Where is the most memorable experience during your career so far?
Shelton Jackson: The most memorable experience so far, would be in a game this season my team and I were able to pull off a double overtime WIN on the road in which I was able to contribute 38 points 18 rebounds and 5 assists. I will always remember that game!
BG: What do you tell anyone who wants to get better and play pro ball?
Shelton Jackson: If you want to play pro ball subscribe to theBetterGame and learn from the founder! Haha — You can also put the necessary work in EVERYDAY. Keep an open mind, be a student of the game every chance you get and won’t let ANYONE outwork you! Good Luck!!!
Check out this season highlights: