Category Archives: Scorers 1st Showcase

Courtex Performance and Scorers 1st partner for Las Vegas Showcase

25.04.2016 – Las Vegas

We are excited to announce our partnership with Rainer Meisterjahn of Courtex Performance LLC for our Scorers 1st Showcase in Las Vegas in July.

“Rainer will be on hand in Las Vegas throughout our workshops on the 11th and 12th, as well as the Showcase on the 13th and 14th. The value he will bring to our Showcase and for players is of immense value and I really look forward to hearing him share his thoughts and tools with us and our participants!” says Scorers 1st CEO Gerrit Kersten-Thiele.


Here is an interview with Rainer Meisterjahn:


Q: Please give us a little bit of background about you and the work you do?

A: In my work as a Mental Coach, I help players unlock more of their potential by addressing the mental aspects of their performance in a systematic way. To me, Complete Player Development incorporates technical, tactical, physical and mental training. Most players make the mistake of only paying attention to two or three of those areas. When your mental game isn’t a priority, you performance is going to take a hit at the end of the day. To me, those players who are truly driven to excel and do their research will realize pretty quickly that along with the rapid developments in sport science, mental training has become a major consideration at the NBA level. So if the top players in the world utilize it, there is no reason as to why others shouldn’t…

Q: What are the most frequent things that players come to you about?

A: Players work with me for a variety of different reasons ranging from improving their focus to becoming a better leader to addressing conflicts with their coaches or teammates, to name a few. The most frequent reason players reach out, though, is to get help with their confidence. Every player seems to chase this idea of “mental toughness” without really knowing what it is. My approach is built on helping players operate with an increased sense of mindfulness and consistently manage, and eventually dominate, their controllables. What I mean by that is that I help players develop a clearer sense of what thoughts are running through their head and how they’re feeling physically when their confidence is low, so they can then use their mental skills and tools that I teach them to control their confidence.


Q: What, in your experience, are the biggest challenges players deal with when first starting their professional career?

A: I’d say that most guys initially really struggle with being away from everything that’s familiar, especially family and friends. In today’s day and age, obviously technology allows them to keep in closer contact with home. But that can also become a major issue when players spend every minute of their free time in front of their computer or on their phone instead of connecting with their new teammates and getting comfortable in their new community. On top of that, those players who go overseas sometimes have a hard time adjusting to cultural differences. There are also basketball-related differences that can range from minor changes in playing rules to long bus rides to away games, lack of access to training facilities and, most importantly, adapting to a new role. Some countries and leagues play with just one US player, which typically means that you carry a lot of responsibility and have to manage high pressure, whereas other places may have multiple imports on their team who are expected to play great team ball to get the most out of their collective ability. These are just a few examples, but the list goes on and on and players have to be ready for the challenge!

Q: In your work with coaches, players and executives what is it that is the most fun to you?

A: To me, the most fun aspect of my work is— without a doubt—the opportunity to build real relationships with players and coaches and be a part of their basketball journey. The game of basketball can be an emotional roller coaster with many successes and disappointments along the way. That’s part of what makes the game beautiful. The relationships you get to build throughout the process, however, are a constant and often last for a lifetime. So I enjoy learning about and from my clients and getting to know them not only as players, but more importantly, as people. I also love hearing about the diversity of experiences different players go through, particularly in international basketball where cultural differences, language barriers, differences in playing format and refereeing, and other factors are so significant.


Q: What will you bring to the Scorers 1st Showcase?

A: Every player knows that they need to play with confidence, focus, energy etc. So they understand the WHAT. I’ll be at the Scorers 1st Showcase to teach guys about the HOW and share some tools and techniques they’ll be able to incorporate into their mental game. Additionally, I’ll discuss ways players can separate themselves from the rest by “showing off” intangibles to get the attention of coaches and scouts. We’ll run group meetings prior to the Showcase where guys can ask questions and learn more about my work with pros up to the NBA level. Throughout the Showcase I’ll be on hand to provide interested players with feedback and support so they can make the most of their opportunity on the court. Lastly, I’ll share more about how players can work with Courtex Performance LLC in the long run to maximize their mental development and professional career path. Can’t wait—it’ll be a great event!!




Creon Raftopoulos joins Coaching Staff for the Scorers 1st Showcase in Düsseldorf


Creon24.04.2015 – Düsseldorf

British BBL Head-Coach Creon Raftopoulos joins the Coaching Staff for the Scorers 1st Showcase in Düsseldorf which takes place this upcoming June on the 18th and 19th 2016.


Here is a quick Q&A with Creon:

Q: What are you looking for the most at the Scorers 1st Showcase 2016?

A: The Scorers 1st Showcase gives me a great opportunity to see players in the flesh rather than off game film and highlight tapes. Being able to speak to players and coach them gives you a better understanding of the players character on and off the court.

Q: What are the most challenging parts of putting a team together each summer?

A: Our first season as Surrey Scorchers in the BBL has been a tough one. I feel we were short in the experience department and struggled to build chemistry on and off the court. Finding good basketball players with team like personalities is important for next season.

This season it’s key to find a balance of young and experienced players who put team before their own personal goals. Our players also interact and coach in the community at times so players who fan friendly ants important.

Q: What do you look for when selecting players for your roster?

A: The three key positions we look to fill each season are point guard , shooting guard / small forward and power forward / centre. We were not great from behind the three point line so that is an area we want to improve on.

Q: What can players expect from you at the Scorers 1st Showcase?

A: As coach I like players to play aggressive on defence and offensively I like the ball to move so everyone gets their touches. I understand all players at the showcase are chasing a contract so will run offences that allows them to all show their strengths and talent.


Coaching Profile – Creon Raftopoulos

Former Zimbabwe international player who started his coaching career as an academy coach with Basketball England Division one club Tees Valley Mohawks. Worked his way up from academy level to head coach of the Mohawks. Then moved on to become director of basketball at Guildford Heat before being appointed head coach of the BBL club. After a top four finish the club was sold and new management took over appointing a new coaching staff. Surrey Scorchers was born for season 2015/16 in the BBL and was appointed head coach.


The Scoring Factory partners with the Scorers 1st Showcase

The Scoring Factory Vector Logo - Black Background17.04.2016 Las Vegas – We are excited to announce our partnership with “The Scoring Factory” and Pete Strobl for our Scorers 1st Showcase in Las Vegas this upcoming July.

“The service that Pete and his staff at “The Scoring Factory” provide is special, because they combine top-level skill training with so many other valuable attributes that it’s great to be able to offer that knowledge and training to our participants in Las Vegas prior and during our Scorers 1st Showcase 2016 in Las Vegas.” says Scorers 1st CEO Gerrit Kersten-Thiele about the partnership with “The Scoring Factory”.


Here is a quick Q&A with Pete Strobl and you will find more information about what “The Scoring Factory” will bring to the Showcase in the next days!

Q: Pete, please give us a little bit of background about you and The Scoring Factory.
A: I started The Scoring Factory in 2009 after retiring from playing in Europe and settled in Pittsburgh. I began coaching some summer league teams and realized there was a dire need for basketball skills development and overall training. At the time, players didn’t even realize what they were missing but within a few short years the word spread and we were on our way to working with the area’s best and brightest. Here we are, several years later and we’ve had the good fortune to work with professionals from almost every league on Earth all the way down to the youth level. It’s an extremely rewarding feeling to be able to have such a positive effect on people’s lives with something they’re equally passionate about. That being said, we feel like we’re just now scratching the surface and discovering how profound our impact can be. 
Q: You have played for many years. What were the biggest challenges for you going overseas and how did you deal with them?
A: I played nine years professionally all over Europe and loved every minute of it, even the rough times. All of those experiences have gone into shaping me as a better human and put me in a position to convey information to those that might need it most. The biggest initial challenges for any young player who first ventures overseas are the language barrier and overall culture shock. This generation has a lot of benefits that we didn’t have in the way of technology and the ability to stay in close contact with friends and loved ones back home. But being open to different ways of doing things can be enriching and enlightening. It’s a difficult transition for those that don’t have at least some idea of what’s in store as they settle in a new country.
Q: We are excited about you partnering with Scorers 1st and the Showcase – did you attend camps when you played and what’s the value you see in the Showcase for players?
A: There weren’t as many showcase camps available when I came out of Niagara University in 2000. I truly believe I got lucky and found a great agent that had close relationships with many critical contacts overseas. I shouldered my responsibilities and made sure I took care of everything on my end with regard to being physically prepared and ready to go whenever the phone might ring with an offer. But you really need a great agent to actually find the right deal and sell you to teams. Had I known about camps when I was coming out, I definitely would have attended and taken advantage of the opportunity for exposure. European coaches don’t attend camps unless they are sure they will be able to evaluate a lot of potential prospects under one roof. Scorer’s 1st has consistently put together one of the best camps around and they do it at the most strategic time of year, when literally the entire basketball world convenes in Las Vegas. 
Q: What will you add to the Showcase and the work-out days? What can players expect?
A: I’ve known Gerrit for years and he is a guy that follows through and does exactly what he says he can do. This is a treacherous and difficult road to navigate for those without much experience. I have a deep respect for his honesty and so I’m honored that he has asked me to be a part of the showcase this year. I’m excited to teach players some of the necessary components to prepare themselves for life as a pro both physically and mentally. Players should expect a crash course in footwork, ball-handling, passing and the many intricate details expected when you play in Europe where skills are still an extremely valued commodity. As always, I look forward to teaching those that have a thirst for knowledge. 
Pete Strobl - The Scoring Factory
Pete Strobl working with DJ Kennedy and Henry Pwono at “The Scoring Factory


Pete Strobl also wrote a book about his experience playing overseas and his journey in basketball. You can find and buy it here: