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Thread: Anthony Bennett: "In Canada, basketball isn't too big."

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    Raptors Republic Hall of Famer Matt52's Avatar
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    Default Anthony Bennett: "In Canada, basketball isn't too big."

    Most scouts look at this McDonald’s All-American class and see the one can’t-miss star (Shabazz Muhammad) and a bunch of other guys who may or may not have NBA potential. Say what you want about them, but Findlay Prep standout Anthony Bennett seems like one of those guys that could eventually play in the League. He’s built like a pro, played for one of the top high school programs in the country, and already has the charisma of a seasoned vet.

    Plus, he’s the only All-American on the team this year born in Canada.

    “In Canada, basketball isn’t too big,” Bennett told HOOPSWORLD. “To be honest, I only started playing basketball about five years ago. Before that, I was kind of a soccer player. I wasn’t too serious with it, but I wanted to try it out. Now, though, it’s all basketball, and I see that I can go far in this. I’ve just got to keep working.”

    How does a kid growing up in Brampton, Ontario find his way to basketball, then? Bennett gives to the credit to a couple of mentors who pointed him in the right direction at the right time of his life.

    “It was a couple of my old coaches, Wayne Brooks and Michael McKenzie,” he said. “There was a little rec team in the city called the Brampton Eagles. I went there my first year, but I wasn’t too good. They helped me out, and when I came back I was like the tallest person there at 6’2”. I worked on my post movies, so by the time I grew to 6’5”, 6’6”, I went to West Virginia and found that I wasn’t a post player. I had to develop my skills on the wing, so now I can do both.”

    Nobody knows where he’ll “do both” next season, however, because he hasn’t picked a college yet. Washington, Oregon, UNLV, Kentucky, and Florida are all still in the mix, but he’s having a hard time narrowing that down.

    “This is a decision that’s going to affect you for the rest of your life,” he said, adding, “It’s going to be so nice (to finally pick a school). It’ll just take the weight off my shoulders and clear my mind out.”

    Making his mark on the NCAA and maybe eventually the NBA is going to prove tough, however, considering the injury issues he’s undergone the last couple of seasons. Despite it all, he’s extremely determined to make his impact somewhere, wherever he ends up.

    “I spend time in the gym,” he said. “I go once every night, or even two-a-days sometimes. Other than that, I’m just seeing what other people are doing and trying to bring that to my own game.

    “I just want to dominate. I want to help the team, make it far into the tournament, and hopefully win a national championship.”

    Those are great goals for a high school kid to have, and as good a kid as Bennett is, it’s hard not to root for him. Some university will be lucky to have him, and eventually, some pro team may be lucky, as well.

    http://www.hoopsworld.com/nba-sunday...-past-kentucky

    Good luck Anthony Bennett but, PLEASE, keep your comments on basketball in Canada to yourself.

    Personally, I think basketball is big in Canada. Obviously it is behind hockey all around and soccer in terms of participation but that would be no different than football and baseball and soccer in terms of participation and NASCAR in terms of watching in the US (total opinion on soccer and NASCAR). The number of top prospects coming out of Canada speaks to the growing popularity in my opinion.

    Maybe I'm overreacting but these types of comments do nothing to help American ignorance of basketball in Canada - specifically NBA players playing for the Raptors. The follow up comment of, "How does a kid from Brampton, Ontario find his way to basketball?" speak to this ignorance. You are talking a city of over 500k. A line like that makes it sound as if it is an Inuit village in Nunavut. Funny how you'd never hear this type of comment, ignorance, or innuendo about, say, Jamario Moon who managed to play basketball coming from Goodwater, Alabama with a population of 1477 people.

    Maybe I'm overreacting.
    Last edited by Matt52; Mon Apr 2nd, 2012 at 06:24 AM.

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    Raptors Republic All-Star Puffer's Avatar
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    Quote matt52 wrote: View Post
    ...funny how you'd never hear this type of comment, ignorance, or innuendo about, say, jamario moon who managed to play basketball coming from goodwater, alabama with a population of 1477 people.

    Maybe i'm overreacting.
    lol

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    Raptors Republic All-Star WJF's Avatar
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    Lets remember this is a high school kid talking, one who has been in the US for a few years and playing in front of bigger crowds than our CIS National championships get. He has had games on ESPN and is getting the exposure that only a few players even in the US get to experience. I do agree that basketball has a solid hold in Canadian culture and is growing, but don't rip a teenager for saying something like this when he has been seeing the game from the top of the hill in the US.

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    Raptors Republic Hall of Famer Matt52's Avatar
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    Quote WJF wrote: View Post
    Lets remember this is a high school kid talking, one who has been in the US for a few years and playing in front of bigger crowds than our CIS National championships get. He has had games on ESPN and is getting the exposure that only a few players even in the US get to experience. I do agree that basketball has a solid hold in Canadian culture and is growing, but don't rip a teenager for saying something like this when he has been seeing the game from the top of the hill in the US.
    Good points. I didn't think of it that way.

    The only counter argument I would have is sports in general are a much bigger deal in the US regardless of the actual sport.

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    Super Moderator Joey's Avatar
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    Quote WJF wrote: View Post
    Lets remember this is a high school kid talking, one who has been in the US for a few years and playing in front of bigger crowds than our CIS National championships get.
    Highschool players in the US play for bigger crowds than our Senior Men's National team does even. I remember they were playing France at the ACC and managed like 1,000 people. Was pathetic.
    "I have self-doubt. I have insecurity. I have fear of failure. We all have self-doubt. You don't deny it, but you also don't capitulate to it. You embrace it. You rise above it." -Kobe Bryant

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    that's how he and the majority of american's feel matt, a little controlling of you to try and sensor what he saying.......

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    Administrator Apollo's Avatar
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    I think what he said about basketball is correct if you put in the right context. Compared to America, no basketball isn't as big in Canada. Just like hockey isn't big in the States when compared to Canada. That doesn't mean basketball isn't popular in Canada and hockey isn't popular in America.

    So what he said is accurate I think.

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    Raptors Republic Rookie Jon_Wade's Avatar
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    Anybody know how good Bennett is or might become? i know hes supposedly 6'8 230 so hes a big kid but can he handle the ball at all?
    Whoever told you skies the limit is looking dumb because I'm 22 and i'm moonwalking on the sun.

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    Raptors Republic Superstar Bendit's Avatar
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    He could very well feel (and act) more American than Canadian....having spent his more impressionable years growing up in West Virginia. I would be surprised if he knew what CIS stands for or even if Jay Triano was once the coach of the National team.

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    Raptors Republic Veteran LBF's Avatar
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    just answer me this, if b-ball is so big in canada. how come we only have one team?how come we only have a handful of players pro? granted that number seems to be growing and maybe thats a sign of basketball becoming bigger here. but, this is puck head land and unless the raptors are doing something really special there isn't big attendance figures.

    the leafs could have a five game win streak, the raptors a 15 game win streak and the leafs would double them up in attendance, tv ratings, etc.

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    Raptors Republic All-Star WJF's Avatar
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    Quote LBF wrote: View Post
    just answer me this, if b-ball is so big in canada. how come we only have one team?how come we only have a handful of players pro? granted that number seems to be growing and maybe thats a sign of basketball becoming bigger here. but, this is puck head land and unless the raptors are doing something really special there isn't big attendance figures.

    the leafs could have a five game win streak, the raptors a 15 game win streak and the leafs would double them up in attendance, tv ratings, etc.
    We only have 1 NBA team, but we have a great start up domestic pro league that is doing things the right way and putting a pretty good product on the floor. I encourage anyone who has not watched a NBL game live to make sure and take one in next year.

    The CIS basketball at the top end is as good and better than many NCAA D-1 teams in the US, the quality of the sport is here, it just needs to gain support from the "fans". Message boards, buying tickets, even dropping an e-mail to the sports networks can all help in our battle to get better exposure.

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    Quote LBF wrote: View Post
    just answer me this, if b-ball is so big in canada. how come we only have one team?how come we only have a handful of players pro? granted that number seems to be growing and maybe thats a sign of basketball becoming bigger here. but, this is puck head land and unless the raptors are doing something really special there isn't big attendance figures.

    the leafs could have a five game win streak, the raptors a 15 game win streak and the leafs would double them up in attendance, tv ratings, etc.
    with some luck when we become good, I believe a large portion of bandwagon losers (for lack of a better term) will pretend like they were loyal fans who were with the raps since the bad times.........the leafs are a mess, and baseball is the most difficult sport to make the post season.......... our time will come.

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    Raptors Republic Rookie Ion66's Avatar
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    Compared to most sports played in the US, the Canadian equivalent is not that big. Take football, a game that started in both countries at the same time pretty much. There are US (OK, Texas) high-school football coaches making more than any CFL coach, and the college level of Football is far better watched and funded than the CFL. Is football popular here? Yes it is. Is it a big as in the US? No, it's not. We dont have the population or the population density of the US, and we dont have the playing season length that they do. Our Universities are more geared to academics than sports and we have a huge athlete talent drain that goes Stateside every year. Add all this up, and the fact that in the big cities, we are more multi-cultural and exposed to a wider variety of sports via those cultures and it make sense that aside from hockey, our sports, all of them are not as big as in the US. The discussion of March madness righ now is of Canadian players taking part, not of US scouts looking at Canadian players competing in any equivalent Canadian tournament. Yes he's young, but he's not that far off the mark. We just dont do sports on the scale that the US does.

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    Raptors Republic All-Star stretch's Avatar
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    I live in central Ontario where hockey is king. There are lots of school agers playing basketball but very few people in the general public that I can talk hoops with. Football, baseball are much more popular.

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    Raptors Republic Veteran NoPropsneeded's Avatar
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    Well that kid grew up in brampton at the wrong time. There are lots and i mean lots of african americans in Brampton and a lot of them play ball. In the next few years we will see many players come out of Canada. I grew up there but i moved to Burlington a couple of years back

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    Raptors Republic All-Star DoNDaDDa's Avatar
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    i got family in brampton & there is by far more kids with basketball nets up playing in the streets then hockey..wont be long before basketball is more popular with the majority of the population in the GTA..

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    Raptors Republic All-Star DoNDaDDa's Avatar
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    Quote NoPropsneeded wrote: View Post
    Well that kid grew up in brampton at the wrong time. There are lots and i mean lots of african americans in Brampton and a lot of them play ball. In the next few years we will see many players come out of Canada. I grew up there but i moved to Burlington a couple of years back
    basketball has become the most played sport among the east indian kids in brampton aswell... its all i ever seen them do

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    immigrants/middle to low income families can't afford to like hockey.......not to mention there is the risk of becoming concussed every time you step out on the ice.

    brampton and sauga are basketball crazy!!

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    Raptors Republic Starter draftedraptor's Avatar
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    Interest in basketball is quite high in BC and Ontario. As for the rest of them, they prefer their beer, hockey and football

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    Raptors Republic All-Star WJF's Avatar
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    Quote draftedraptor wrote: View Post
    Interest in basketball is quite high in BC and Ontario. As for the rest of them, they prefer their beer, hockey and football
    Pure Ignorance! I am from Ontario, and yes basketball is popular there...but, if you follow the sport across the country and see what provinces do well at Nationals and what areas have solid followings for their college and University programs you would add many a province to that list. The basketball in Nova Scotia is great, second to none. Quebec has produced many solid players and is always a force in U17 competitions. Alberta produces a steady stream of quality and Saskatchewan and Manitoba are making big strides. You may want to get out and take a look before you make such a blanket statement.

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