Thursday, November 10, 2016

Uno En Uno With: Connor Savill

ZS: What made you come to the United States and which aspects of the American style of play, particularly here with the SIAA, had appeal to you? 

CS: I really wanted to maximize my opportunities to expand my game as a basketball player. American basketball is quicker, more athletic, and less dependent on constant shooting. There is more uptempo game and there is better defense and also more emphasis on the defensive side. 

The teammates out here in America have more competitive fire in them and I think basketball gets more support and fans here. I chose Conrad Academy because coach Brad Traina sold me on playing every day, playing against elite competition and that was exactly what I wanted. So far, it's been great because I get to train and play with great athletes and great players. I didn't have that opportunity back home. 

ZS: What role do you envision for yourself playing for coach Ryan Rodriguez? What's your identity as a key cog in his offense? 

CS: This year, I'm going to be a major presence on the boards. Rebounding and getting hustle points is part of what I do. Also, I like to be a slasher and get to the rim. I try to incorporate my athleticism in being able to make plays. I can shoot but I want to expand on my all-around game, which is why I opted to come to TCA. 

ZS: What was your role in Australia with Lakeside Lightning and which type of transition will you make to the prep scene here in Florida? How has the transition been so far? 

CS: With Lakeside, I was a guard really. I pushed the break and I was really a passer and creator. At TCA, I'm much more of a scorer. I'm learning to play against a new type of defense that is more athletic and really versatile, so that comes with developing new areas of my game. I also think that I'm called upon to score more here. I scored 20 points against Fort Lauderdale Prep, getting out on the break a lot and getting into their defense. I had 20 against Montverde as well, giving me an idea of how to lead a team with the score-first mentality. So, I think I'll be depended on as a guy that gets buckets under coach's motion offense. 

ZS: What do you hope to accomplish this year team-wise, and personally?

CS: Team-wise, I want to win as many games as possible. The goal is to win our last game. Personally, I'd like to average a double-double for the season and gain more exposure. I want to be a known player around here, a guy who people will look at and go, "that kid can play." Hopefully, if this works as I expect it to, it will lead to scholarship opportunities with NCAA teams. That would be ideal 

ZS: What's the basketball scene like in Australia and who are some of the guys the country carries a torch proudly for?

CS: Ben Simmons, without a doubt. The way he can dominate the game and do all that he can while being so young has made him a superstar in Australia. Even though he played here in the United States, he's a major celebrity in Australia. He's well known in Australia, there are people wearing his jerseys and tuning in to watch the 76ers play because of him. 

Patty Mills and Andrew Bogut have also made people check out the American game. Of course, basketball is really big in Australia with guys like Damien Martin, Casey Prather, Kevin Lisch and a number of others.