Re-born at 28 years old? His name is Gregory Plummer (6'4''-G-83, college: Eckerd) and that might be the best way to describe the 6-4 shooting guard/small forward they call The Purist. How else would you label the summer of 2011 for the 28-year old who took over the New York Summer league circuit, on his way to being named Nikes Player of the Summer at the annual Tournament of Champions earlier this month. Considering Plummer did not even play professionally this past season or last summer after rehabbing from surgery on his ankle which had been plaguing the Brooklyn, NY native the past two-plus years, the moniker is fitting. Plummer was integral to the success of the X-Men, coached by Staten Island Vipers (ABA) Head Coach Dytanya Mixson , who captured the West 4th Classic as well as EBC (Entertainers basketball Classic) titles before falling to Team Nike (Dyckman) in the TOC Finals. Plummer averaged an astonishing 41 points per contest in the West 4th playoffs and for the last two-months has been the talk of the tri-state area, something you could not have imagined at the beginning of the year.
While rehabbing, Plummer was a teacher in Westchester trying to pay the bills and make ends meet, but also during his rehab, he took the time to learn some new moves and tricks which he put on display this summer. Always a gifted shooter, (basically playing on one leg for Halifax of the Premier Basketball League in 2010 he still shot 50.0% from the field and 38.0% from behind the arc), Plummer worked on developing a more varied offensive game; inclusive of post-up moves and improved ball-handling as well as further refining his jump shot.
Though Plummer had a very productive High School career at Transit Tech HS in East New York, he went to unheralded Sage JC (Division II) before furthering his development at NCAA DII Eckerd College. Despite going the DII route, Plummer landed his first professional job in Luxembourgs second division during the 2005-06 season with BBC Nitia Bettembourg. After an abbreviated 11 games overseas, NY was calling him home and there during the 2006-07 season was where he would emerge on the professional scene with the now defunct Strong Island Sound of the American Basketball Association (ABA). Under Coach Mixson, Plummer blossomed into an All-Star on the back of averaging 20 points per contest while leading the Sound to the second round of the playoffs.
However, the end of the 2008 season would be the beginning of the troubles for Plummer, specifically his ankle. Never wanting to stop and truly rest or try to recover, Plummer would play the next seasons between the Continental basketball Association (CBA) and PBL, where he finished with Halifax in 2010, hobbled and unable to match the level of performance he had come to expect. Today, fully recovered and coming off of the summer of his re-birth Plummer takes some time to talk about the last two months, his ups and downs and where he see himself going this season and beyond.
Surujh: First off congratulations again on being named Nikes Player of the Summer. What does the award mean for you? Greg: It means a great deal to me and my career because it shows that I accomplished something that a lot of people didnt think I could. A lot of people didnt expect me to come back and be as productive as I was before the injury. Then to come back and win two championships, two MVP awards in two of the major leagues in New York City no one expected me to be playing at that level , but I knew that I could and I did. I didnt want to just come back and show that I could run up and down the court, I owed it to myself to show that I could perform at a high level and win.
Surujh: What are your thoughts on the TOC Championship game loss against Team Nike? Was it just a matter of wrong day and wrong time? Greg: It was a matter of them scoring more points than us. Its as simple as that. They were the better team that day and they are the champs until next season.
Surujh: Regardless, it was a summer to remember for you personally. What did you expect coming into the summer tournaments? Were you mentally and physically ready? Greg: I was definitely mentally and physically ready for the summer. My physical health was never a concern for me because I knew I was ready. I was home all winter and waiting for all the guys who play Professional ball to come home so that we could take them out. Thats something I was looking forward to because I had the opportunity to play with my X-Men brothers again and we always have a really good chance of winning no matter who we play against.
Surujh: Tell me a little about your last year and half for you, the injury, your rehab and not playing. What kind of affect did that have on you? Greg: Without question the toughest and most frustrating time of my life. I wanted everything to happen fast. I wanted a speedy recovery, rehab, and just wanted it to be in the past. Sometimes it takes a while for your body to respond to the physical demands of professional basketball. I learned a lot of valuable lessons. As much as I hated it at times, I believe that I am a much better person and basketball player because I went through this. Being on the sidelines for that long wasnt easy but it made me hungrier and motivatedmore than Ive ever been.
Surujh: About your rehab, I read in the Post (NY) article that you spent time working on other aspects of your game in your training regimen. What did you focus on and what type of work did you have to put in? Greg: I had to focus on getting my body stronger and making my game outside of shooting the ball more efficient. I worked out with Lamont Harris in the winter and spring. Everything we did was high intensity, fast paced and physical. Along with the workouts I used the winter leagues and spring leagues to get me ready for summer.
Surujh: What kind of feedback and response did you get from the NYC fans this summer? Your opponents? Other coaches? Greg: I surprised a lot of people. Nobody outside of X-Men expected me to play the way I did. It was fun to see guys who I always play against trying to adjust to the new things I added to my game. It was even more fun to see other coaches sending a bunch of different guys at me to slow me down. The most fun of all is the look on all of their faces when they focused on me and forgot that we had Tommie Eddie (6'7''-F/C-82, college: Mississippi) and Chris Wehye (6'7''-F-84, college: Quinnipiac) and that it led to championships.
Surujh: With many seasons about to get underway overseas and in the US minor leagues, where do you have your sights set for this season? Greg: I have a few teams interested but no deal has been made yet so Im just waiting to see what happens. Im just excited about the opportunity to be playing pro ball again.
Surujh: What can Gregory Plummer bring to the table for a pro club overseas? Greg: A professional, passionate, hard worker, and someone who is hungry for championships.
The American Basketball Association (ABA) released its Power Rankings through Sunday, November 27th and the top four teams held their positions. "With limited play over the Thanksgiving weekend, there was no change at the top," stated ABA co-founder Joe Newman . "The Orlando Waves, Arizona Scorpions, DMV Warriors and Kentucky Enforcers all held their positions with undefeated records. With a full schedule of games this week and some top contenders playing one another, we could see some sh... [read more]
The American Basketball Association (ABA) released its Power Rankings through Sunday, November 27th and the top four teams held their positions. "With limited play over the Thanksgiving weekend, there was no change at the top," stated ABA co-founder Joe Newman . "The Orlando Waves, Arizona Scorpions, DMV Warriors and Kentucky Enforcers all held their positions with undefeated records. With a full schedule of games this week and some top contenders playing one another, we could see some shifting." (At least 3 games qualified for the Power Rankings).
1. Orlando Waves 5-0 2. Arizona Scorpions 6-0 3. DMV Warriors 5-0 4. Kentucky Enforcers 6-0 5. New England Anchors 4-0 6. Atlanta Wildcats (4-0) 7. Roc City Ravens 4-0 8. Georgia Kingz 4-0 9. South Florida Gold 4-1 10. Kalamazoo Cobras 5-1 11. Orange County Novastars 4-1 12. Salina Saints 4-0 13. Universal Cityh Seraphims 3-0 14. Mobile Bay Tornados 3-0 15. Atlantic Coast Cardinals 3-0 16. New York Court Kingz 3-1 17. Virginia Storm 3-1 18. Fredericksburg Grizzlies 3-1 19. Grand Rapids Danger 3-2 20. Steel City Yellow Jackets 3-2 21. Springfield Sting 3-1 22. Carolina Cougars 3-1 23. Chicago Fury 2-1 24. Yuba City Gold Miners 2-1 25. Nevada Senators 2-1
Several traditional ABA powerhouses begin play this week including the Jacksonville Giants, Laredo Swarm, Windy City Groove and West Texas Whirlwinds, and several other regularly ranked teams play two games this weekend. There will be changes next week. The minimum number of games to be ranked next week will be four. For more information, visit www.abaliveaction.com
The Cleveland Am Pro'ers traveled to Pittsburgh, Pa last Saturday to take on the Steel City Yellow Jackets, in an exciting ABA Contest. The Cleveland team has not participated in the ABA or any Minor League in almost two seasons, but the team is back and loaded with talent. The Steel City Yellow Jackets who were coming off a victory in their previous game also had several talented players which made for an exciting contest. Cleveland and Steel City went into halftime tied at 51. In the... [read more]
The Cleveland Am Pro'ers traveled to Pittsburgh, Pa last Saturday to take on the Steel City Yellow Jackets, in an exciting ABA Contest. The Cleveland team has not participated in the ABA or any Minor League in almost two seasons, but the team is back and loaded with talent.
The Steel City Yellow Jackets who were coming off a victory in their previous game also had several talented players which made for an exciting contest. Cleveland and Steel City went into halftime tied at 51. In the third quarter Cleveland jumped out to a quick 6 point lead, however at the 5:36 minute mark in the 3rd quarter Steel City made a run to take the lead into the third quarter 89 to 80.
In the fourth quarter Steel City went up as much as 14 points. Cleveland made a run and cut the lead to 6 points, but that would be as close as they would get. Steel City made several timely three point shots and won the game 124 to 112.
Cleveland was led by Todd Brown (6'5''-G-87, college: Wright St.) Triple Double 10 points, 10 assists, 10 Rebounds, and 2 steals. Todd is a bonafide pro who will be heading back overseas in the near future. Former NCAA High Jump Champion Jamil Dudley (6'6''-F) led Cleveland in scoring with 26 points. Dudley added 6 rebounds 1 assist, 2 blocks, and 4 steals to his stat line.
Morgan Jones (5'9''-PG, college: Ohio Dominican) a guard who during his senior season was in the Top 10 in scoring nationally added 21 points, 7 rebounds, 7 assists, and 4 steals.
Brendan Cooper (6'7''-G, college: Fairmont St.) a former Canadian League first round draft pick added 10 points, 10 rebounds, and 6 assists. Former Dartmouth University product Dan Biber (6'8''-F, college: Western St.) added 15 points, 6 rebounds, 1 block, and 4 steals. Cleveland Am Pro'ers veteran John Trew (6'8''-F, college: Ohio Dominican) had 6 points 5 rebounds, 2 blocks, and 1 steal. To the surprise of the Cleveland staff Marzell Brooks proved to be a huge spark off the bench with 9 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, and 1 steal in only 12 minutes of game action.
You can visit www.clevelandakronampro.com for updates in regards to the Cleveland Am Pro'ers.
The American Basketball Association (ABA) today released its Power Rankings for the week ending Sunday, November 20th and the Orlando Waves moved into the number one position with a victory over the strong South Florida Gold team. The Arizona Scorpions moved into the #2 position followed closely by last week's #1 rated DMV Warriors. "We have some very talented teams in the ABA this season," stated ABA co-founder Joe Newman , "And I anticipate there will be a battle every week for the #1 s... [read more]
The American Basketball Association (ABA) today released its Power Rankings for the week ending Sunday, November 20th and the Orlando Waves moved into the number one position with a victory over the strong South Florida Gold team. The Arizona Scorpions moved into the #2 position followed closely by last week's #1 rated DMV Warriors. "We have some very talented teams in the ABA this season," stated ABA co-founder Joe Newman , "And I anticipate there will be a battle every week for the #1 spot."
1. Orlando Waves (5-0) 2. Arizona Scorpions (6-0) 3. DMV Warriors (3-0) 4. Kentucky Enforcers (4-0) 5. New England Anchors (4-0) 6. Atlanta Wildcats (4-0) 7. Roc City Ravens (4-0) 8. Georgia Kingz (4-0) 9. South Florida GOLD (4-1) 10. Kalamazoo Cobras (5-1) 11. Orange County Novastars (4-1) 12. Salina Saints (3-0) 13. Universal City Seraphims (3-0) 14. Richmond Elite (2-0) 15. Mobile Bay Tornados (2-0) 16. Atlantic Coast Cardinals (3-0) 17. Steel City Yellow Jackets (3-1) 18. Grand Rapids Danger (3-1) 19. Wisconsin RimRattlers (2-0) 20. Austin Bats (2-0) 21. New York Court Kingz (2-0) 22. West Michigan Lake Hawks (2-0) 23. Springfield Sting (2-1) 24. Fredericksburg Grizzlies (2-1) 25. T- Carolina Cougars, Nevada Senators (each 2-1)
*Minimum of 2 games to be Power Ranked. Teams to watch: Jacksonville Giants, Windy City Groove, Laredo Swarm, West Texas Whirlwinds, Henderson Hawks. For more information, visit www.abaliveaction.com
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