Dennis Schröder On What Players He Looked Up To Growing Up & The New Atlanta Hawks

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Dennis Schröder On What Players He Looked Up To Growing Up & The New Atlanta Hawks


You won’t find many players in the league who are as explosive and quick as Dennis Schröder.

Before being drafted 17th overall in the 2013 NBA draft by the Atlanta Hawks, he already drew many comparisons to fellow NBA point guard Rajon Rondo. Positive things like the ‘athelticism’, the ‘court vision’, the ‘ability to always find an open man’ as well as negative things such as ‘not being able to create his own shot’ and ‘not being a strong shooter in general.’ As most of you know, Dennis struggled in his first year in the league. He didn’t play much, had lots of turnovers, and eventually was sent down to the D-League, where he impressed. It was a tough year for him, he didn’t play consistent enough to be a reccuring part of the rotation.

Thankfully, this was an encouragement for him rather than a dissapointment. He was training a lot. He didn’t take any time off in the offseason. Schröder was in the gym every day, gaining muscle, working on his shot, training hard. He said himself that this summer ‘was the toughest summer in his life’. It payed off!

The next two seasons, Dennis didn’t look anything like “Rookie Schröder”. He matured on and off the court. His developped jumpshot fit perfectly to his style of play and his size and speed caused a lot of mismatches. He was an important part of the Hawks rotation.

Last year, the Hawks traded their starting point guard Jeff Teague to the Indiana Pacers and signed Schröder to a four-year, $70 million contract extension, placing their trust in him, naming Schröder their new starting point guard.

He was great in his first NBA year as a starter, averaging 17.9 points, 6.3 assists, 3.1 rebounds and 1.0 steals per game while shooting 45.1% from the field and 85.5% from the line. In the playoff series against the Washington Wizards, Schröder took things to a whole new level. He went face-to-face with the Wizards’ All-Star point guard John Wall, and Schröder did not disappoint.

He averaged 24.4 points, 7.2 assists, 2.6 rebounds and only 1.6 turnovers while shooting 45.7% from the field, 43.8% from 3, and 82.8% from the line. He was keeping the Hawks in that series by himself at times. Schröder seems to develop into a great player more and more.

During a conference call prior to the NBA Africa Game, Schröder talked about the new Atlanta Hawks, who lost All Star players in Paul Millsap and Dwight Howard.


“I spoke to the coach and yeah we traded Dwight, that was the first thing and Paul Milsap and Tim Hardaway. It’s tough you know, I love them, they’re like my brothers but that’s the business. I talked to coach Budenholzer  and we want to develop  the team and want the young guys to improve and step up and want me to go the right way and try to improve. I think now is the perfect timing to do all that, I’ve got a couple of years ahead of me where I can really develop and take my game to the next level and I’m looking forward to it. I accept the challenge for sure. A lot of people, Jimmy Butler and Paul George went to the West, the West is getting pretty strong and in the East the first four or five teams are really good and I think after that everything is wide open so whoever competes the most can make the playoffs but it’s been a really crazy off-season.”


I mean there isn’t much to add to his statemen, but the Hawks making the playoff would be a huge surprise. This is Schröder’s team now, but his supporting cast is mediocre, at best.

Schröder was also asked what players he looked up to growing up and how it is to be on their side now. He replied:


“When I was younger I looked up to Rajon Rondo, Chris Paul… Now it is just amazing that I made it here, that I have my own team and a great organisation like the Atlanta Hawks. I can be proud of myself. I just have to keep working, keep getting better every year. I’m looking forward to playing with all the young guys this year.”


Dennis Schröder has made it into the German pro league (BBL), the national team and eventually the NBA, the rest of the story is yet to be written. But, if he continues to improve as he has, he will become a star in the league.

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