Getting To Know Sylven Landesberg
by: Rodger Bohn - Director of Prep Scouting
May 19, 2007

New York City guard Sylven Landesberg brings a package of skills that not many other guards in the class of 2008 can offer. At 6í6, he has the ability to not only be a lethal scoring threat from the perimeter, but he can also run a team nearly as well. His ball handling and court vision are above average for a player of his size, which explains why the majority of schools recruiting him want him to run the show for their respective colleges. Landesberg is an awfully creative scorer, slithering his way through the lane when he doesnít kill you from the outside. His can kill you from beyond the three point arc, as well as from the midrange area with his jumper, making him one of the more versatile wings in the class of 2008.

Landesbergís two biggest weaknesses are his lack of strength and his presence on the defensive end, which he will tell you himself. He is a bit frail at only around 195 lbs for a player standing 6-foot-6, and is often effected once he absorbs contact in midair. On the defensive end he struggles at times guarding smaller, quicker defenders. Sylven has the length to eventually become a solid defender in the future, but must first refine his defensive fundamentals in order to do so.

Sylven is a player that draft fans need to keep their eyes on due to his complete offensive skill set, and the fact that the majority of the schools that are recruiting him are projecting him as a point guard in their offensive scheme. With improved strength and muscle mass for Landesberg, there is no reason that he will not be one of the more intriguing guard prospects in his class due to his outstanding size, scoring ability, and court vision.

Rodger Bohn: Can you give me a brief description of your game, for those out there who havenít seen you play?

Landesberg: Last summer, I was more of a laid back player. I wasnít very aggressive, but this summer everything has changed. I got stronger, and Iím much more aggressive now. I look to score on every single possession, whether it be myself or my teammates. Iím just far more aggressive now and have a different mentality.

Rodger Bohn: What do you think separates you from the other guards the class of 2008 has to offer?

Landesberg: I would say my style of play and the way I do things on the floor. I like to get my teammates involved, I know when to pass, who to pass it to, and when to score myself. I also think the ways I can score, since I can score in so many different ways.

Rodger Bohn: What areas of your game do you feel you need to improve upon most?

Landesberg: My defense and my strength. I definitely need to get a little bigger.

Rodger Bohn: Tell me what the typical off-season day for Sylven Landesberg is like.

Landesberg: Oh wow. I wake up at 5:30 in the morning, take a couple hundred shots, then head over to a trainer named Jerry Powell. I work out with him for about two hours, then I eat breakfast. Then I go up to my school and get some more shots up, so I usually get over 1000 shots in for the day. Next I hit the weight room up with my trainer who works me out with the weights, and then I go back to Jerry Powell at night.

Rodger Bohn: Whatís the latest with your recruiting situation?

Landesberg: Well, Iíve cut my list of schools down. Now Iím only looking at Texas, Virginia, Florida, Georgia Tech, St. Johnís, and Rutgers.

Rodger Bohn: Do you have a leader at the moment?

Landesberg: No, I canít say that I have a leader right now.

Rodger Bohn: Which out of those schools have offered you?

Landesberg: All of the schools have offered.

Rodger Bohn: Have you taken visits to any schools yet?

Landesberg: No, not yet. Iím looking to make some visits very soon though.

Rodger Bohn: What are the main factors in your recruitment?

Landesberg: I want to go to a school where I can come in and make a big impact right away. I donítí want to sit on the bench my first year, I want to be able to play. The school I go to has to fit my style of play, as I like to run the floor and stuff.

Rodger Bohn: I thought that it was a bit odd that you are so strongly considering programs such as Rutgers, St. Johnís, and Virginia that donít normally land top 30 caliber players such as yourself. What is it that those three schools have that keep you so interested?

Landesberg: Well St. Johnís, theyíre the local team. I have to keep them on there. Everyone is telling me to go there and bring the home team up. I love the coaching staff and everyone over there too, so thatís why Iím keeping them on the list. Rutgers, theyíre local too and I love the coaching staff over there. Virginia would just be a real good fit for me. Theyíre using a lot of players over there and I think I would fit in great with their style of play.

Rodger Bohn: Now the obvious assumption is that the only reason you are considering Rutgers and St. Johnís is because they are so close to home. How big of a factor is staying close to home for you?

Landesberg: A lot of people ask me that question, but staying close to home really isnít that big of a thing for me. It doesnít matter where I play, as long as Iím happy where Iím at. Staying close to home is not really that big of a factor for me.

Rodger Bohn: What do you like about Texas?

Landesberg: Theyíre losing a lot of bigtime guards. D.J. Augustin will be gone when I get there, most likely. A.J. Abrams will be gone too. They said that they love the way I played. Coach Barnes came down and saw me and told me that he loved the way I play. I really like the way that theyíre going to use me, since Iíd be the main focal point of their offense. Theyíre recruiting some big people in there, some really good big men for me to drop it down to and get assists. Itís a big move over there. Theyíre going to have a really good team.

Rodger Bohn: Tell me what makes Florida so appealing, since you told me that you prefer to play point guard and theyíre going to use you as more of a wing.

Landesberg: Florida, they are the national champions. Billy Donovan came down, and I really like Billy Donovan. I like the way they run their offense, thatís the main thing. They like to run the ball a lot, so thatís why I kept them in mind. I like to run the ball a lot, so thatís why I had to keep them up there. When youíre running the ball a lot, it doesnít matter whose playing the 1, 2, or 3 because all of the guards just get it and go.

Rodger Bohn: What do you like about Georgia Tech?

Landesberg: They were pretty much the first school out of the six that I have on my list now that were recruiting me real, real hard since the beginning of my sophomore year. Paul Hewitt came down a lot of times, and Iíve talked to him the most out of all the head coaches. I talk to Coach Hewitt a lot and I have a really good connection with them. I like the way that theyíre going to use me a lot, since theyíre going to use me the same way that Texas is going to use me.

Rodger Bohn: Were you happy with the way that Georgia Tech used Javaris Crittenton this past season? He is a big point guard, and you would likely be playing a role similar to him if you were to become a Yellow Jacket.

Landesberg: I was a big fan of him. I liked the way he played and the way Georgia Tech used him. They should have done better then they did as a team, but I liked the way they used Crittenton a lot.

Rodger Bohn: What position are you looking to play at the next level?

Landesberg: A lot of people are telling me that theyíre going to use me as a point guard, so I guess Iím going to be playing a lot of point.

Rodger Bohn: What schools are recruiting you as a point guard?

Landesberg: Well at Florida, I would be playing the 2 or the 3 since they have Nick Calathes coming in. Virginia and Texas both said I would be running the offense there. St. Johnís said I would be running the offense, so did Georgia Tech. Iím not so sure on Rutgers, but I would probably be a 2 or a 3 this year.

Rodger Bohn: How do you think youíve played so far this spring on the AAU circuit?

Landesberg: So far I think Iíve been doing pretty well. Weíve played in three big AAU tournaments so far and I think I did well in all of them, except for Boo Williams. That was a pretty bad tournament for me.

Rodger Bohn: Why did you decide to leave the New York Panthers and play with the Metro Hawks this spring on the AAU circuit?

Landesberg: Playing with the Panthers, I wasnít playing my best basketball over there because there were a lot of things holding me back. I was playing the 3 or the 4 over there when I never play those positions. Playing with the Metro Hawks was a big change because I actually got to play the position that I will play in college, plus I got to play with another great player in Samardo (Samuels)?

Rodger Bohn: How do you like playing with an elite big man in Samardo Samuels?

Landesberg: With the Panthers, I was really hidden in the offense and I wasnít really able to show what I could do. Over here with the Metro Hawks, Iím running the one, two, and three. Playing with Samardo has been great. Heís always someone to dump the ball to when Iím penetrating and teams are double teaming me. I know heís going to be right there and itís an easy two points every time.

Rodger Bohn: You played in ABCD the last few years, but ABCD is now a thing of the past. Will you be playing in the Reebok University camp or the Nike position camps and LeBron James All America Camp?

Landesberg: Iím doing the Nike position camps and then the LeBron James All American Camp

Rodger Bohn: What are your thoughts on the NBAís age limit?

Landesberg: I think that itís really stupid, itís nonsense. I think that if a kid is good enough to go, he should be able to go.

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Sylven Landesberg
Full Profile | Player Stats
Height: 6' 6"
Weight: 210 lbs.
Birthday: 04/10/1990
26 Years Old
High School: Holy Cross
Previous Team: Maccabi Tel Aviv , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Current: SG,
Possible: SG
Quick Stats:
14.4 Pts, 3.3 Rebs, 1.0 Asts

D.J. Augustin
Full Profile | Player Stats
Height: 5' 11"
Weight: 172 lbs.
Birthday: 11/10/1987
29 Years Old
High School: Brother Martin
Previous Team: Magic , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #9 in 2008 Draft
by the Bobcats
Current: PG,
Possible: PG
Quick Stats:
8.7 Pts, 1.4 Rebs, 3.1 Asts

Billy Donovan
Full Profile | Player Stats
Height: 5' 11"
Weight: 171 lbs.
Birthday: 05/30/1965
51 Years Old
High School: St. Agnes
Previous Team: , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 3, Pick #22 in 1987 Draft
by the Jazz
Current: G,
Possible: G
Quick Stats:
2.4 Pts, 0.6 Rebs, 2.0 Asts

Javaris Crittenton
Full Profile | Player Stats
Height: 6' 5"
Weight: 194 lbs.
Birthday: 12/31/1987
29 Years Old
High School: Southwest Atlanta Christian
Previous Team: Georgia Tech , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #19 in 2007 Draft
by the Lakers
Current: PG,
Possible: PG/SG
Quick Stats:
25.8 Pts, 5.0 Rebs, 4.6 Asts

Nick Calathes
Full Profile | Player Stats
Height: 6' 5"
Weight: 185 lbs.
Birthday: 02/07/1989
27 Years Old
High School: Lake Howell
Previous Team: Panathinaikos , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 2, Pick #15 in 2009 Draft
by the Timberwolves
Current: PG/SG,
Possible: PG/SG
Quick Stats:
13.1 Pts, 5.0 Rebs, 6.3 Asts

Samardo Samuels
Full Profile | Player Stats
Height: 6' 8"
Weight: 240 lbs.
Birthday: 01/09/1989
28 Years Old
High School: St. Benedict Prep
Previous Team: Barcelona , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Current: PF/C,
Possible: PF
Quick Stats:
21.9 Pts, 7.2 Rebs, 1.6 Asts

LeBron James
Full Profile | Player Stats
Height: 6' 8"
Weight: 245 lbs.
Birthday: 12/30/1984
32 Years Old
High School: St. Vincent-St. Mary
Previous Team: Cavaliers , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #1 in 2003 Draft
by the Cavaliers
Current: SF,
Possible: SF
Quick Stats:
25.6 Pts, 7.8 Rebs, 8.1 Asts