Lehigh Hoops Nation recently had the pleasure of sitting down with a very busy Holden Greiner to catch up on what he has been up to since the conclusion of his playing days at Lehigh in March. As you’ll see from this interview, Holden has been very busy and recently had a long time dream of his come true with his signing a contract to play professional basketball in Europe.
LHN: Thanks for taking the time to sit down for a chat Holden! I know your fans will enjoy hearing about how you are doing.
HG: It’s not a problem at all, we both know Lehigh basketball has the best fans in the world so I’m glad to have a little chat.
LHN: We’ll get to all of the basketball news in a few minutes, but I want to start off by saying congratulations on your recent graduation from Lehigh. Has it started to sink in yet that you’re officially an alum of Lehigh, and tell us what it was like to walk across the stage to receive your diploma?
HG: Yeah that was a dream in itself, you know basketball has to end someday no matter how good you are, but that doesn’t sound as bad knowing I have a great education.
LHN: Those that know you realize that as soon as the Lehigh season ended your basketball focus was solely aimed at signing a professional contract in Europe. Step one of that process was your signing with a sports agency, so tell us what the agency search process was like and how you ended up signing with Pro Partner Sports Management “PPSM”? Any former teammates or contacts recommend PPSM to you?
HG: Nobody really recommended PPSM to me, Nick (my agent) got in touch with me at an early time and had knowledge of my game beyond just the fact that I made first team all-conference. I knew I could trust this group of guys and they had my best interests in mind. That was most important in my eyes.
LHN: After signing with PPSM, how much conversation and interaction did you have with them in terms of working together to find a team to start your pro career with? Are you involved in the process or do you just let the agency work to find you a country and team to play for?
HG: Yes it’s more of a group effort, they find out what type of things I’m looking for in a country and then they can send my game tapes to those leagues that would match the things that are important to me.
LHN: Congratulations on recently signing with Landstede Zwolle in the Netherlands, shed some light on how you ended up agreeing to play with them in the Netherlands?
HG: They are a great organization, and it’s actually a huge opportunity for me and I’m really excited about it. They are involved in the community and also have great fans, something I’m used to thanks to Lehigh.
LHN: How much do you know about Netherlands as a country? The city you’ll be living in? The league you’ll be playing in? The Landstede Zwolle team you’ll be playing for?
HG: The country speaks English and the league is a great league to move up and succeed career wise. Zwolle is a really nice town and the team usually finished towards the top of the division, so like I said it’s a great spot for me.
LHN: How much have you spoken to guys like Michael Ojo, Marquis Hall, Joe Knight, or even an Errick McCollum about what life is like playing professional basketball overseas?
HG: I have talked to all those guys and more than a few times, and I’m obviously a little nervous but excited as well about life overseas.
LHN: You’ve elected to stay on campus and continue to workout at Lehigh, what part of your game have you been working on the most since your Lehigh season ended? What kind of training regimen have you been on?
HG: Yeah I have been trying to play actual basketball as much as possible and during workouts I have focused on refining my guard skills as Zwolle plans on me playing on the wing.
LHN: Holden, one final question from me, and it is something I always wanted to ask you about. As you look back on your Lehigh career, let’s spend a few minutes talking about one of the most popular words among the Lehigh Basketball Program and one you use quite frequently, that being the word “Family”. It is a word that is used a lot by both players and coaches within the program, a word that when recruits sign the dotted line to join the program they always mention about how they had a different feeling when visiting the Lehigh program, a feeling of “Family” and togetherness. There is obviously something that is quite real and tangible here, and I know how tight knit of a group you all are, but in your own words can you maybe try to tell everyone what “Family” means to you and how you think the culture of the program allows the team to grow so close to one another?
HG: Yeah family is a huge component of Lehigh basketball and in my opinion the main reason many guys decide to play here. It’s an unique feeling but its compete respect and trust. You know that every guy in that locker room would do anything for you and you would do anything for them. Every sprint, every win, every loss, every day is easier because of the guys in this program.
LHN: You’ve been a great sport Holden, and I hope you’ve had as much fun as I did, so the floor is yours my friend to voice any last messages that you want to send to all your fans among Lehigh Hoops Nation.
HG: Thanks for being the best fans a simple Lehigh forward could ask for, I loved playing for Lehigh and I will miss it and much of that is thanks to the fans! I hope I can make Lehigh proud in the Netherlands!
Holden, I can’t thank you enough for the way in which you represented yourself and the university over these past four years, both in the classroom, community, and on the court. Please know that all Lehigh alumni and basketball fans will be watching and rooting for you at the next level, so keep on representing Traverse City and Lehigh University to the same standards that you have been doing, and best of luck in all of your future endeavors.