Steven Bennett is a 25 year old 173cm point guard from Los Angeles that is playing his second professional basketball season with the Giessen 46ers last seasn playing 37 games averaging 11.1ppg, 3.0rpg, 3.4apg, 1.2spg, FGP: 44.4%, 3PT: 32.6%, FT: 66.7%. As a rookie he played for the Spot Up Medium Baskets Braunschweig. With Braunschweig he played 10 games averaging 22.7ppg, 4.1rpg, 5.1apg, 2.4spg, 2FGP: 57.5%, 3FGP: 34.2%, FT: 76.6% He is one of the few special players that has a tenacity and will to win that is unmatched; it is impossible to judge him based upon height alone because he can compete with anyone in the world. He has proven this in the Maui Invitational division I tournament in 2010, and was recognized as one of the top players (All-Maui Award) from a field of other top US point guards such as Kemba Walker, Kailin Lucas and Brandon Knight. Bennett is known for his great court vision and passing ability, and is able to get in the lane at will and finish against anyone with either left or right hand. Every team bases their defensive strategy around Bennett and is forced to take create his own shot and take his three point shots off the dribble. He is an excellent shooter, but wants to continue to improve his already respectable 40% three point percentage. Steven is known for having excellent leadership skills, and is highly respected by all of his peers and coaches. He played at Citrus JC (JUCO) from 2007-2009 and then played at Chaminade (NCAA2). In the summer of 2013 he also found experience playing for the Rockingham Flames (Australia-SBL) He played three games with 2013 NBA draft pick Dennis Schroeder as a rookie in the Pro B.He spoke to German Hoops about basketball.
HI Steve, thanks for talking to German Hoops. Where are you at the moment and how has your summer been?
Currently, I am in Canada training. My summer has been good. After being in Europe for 9 months straight, it is always to see family and friends.
The new basketball season is about to start all over Europe and you are still unsigned. How has the signing period been for you this summer your third time?
This summer has been challenging for my agent and I because we are looking for a opportunity that is going to build upon my past experiences. I have had offers on the table this summer, but my agent and I are looking for a job that is going to put me in a better situation and set up my career how I would like to.
What is your focus now in the transfer period? Teams are almost filled up? How hard has it been being at home, working out and just waiting while your friends and ex teammates are back in Europe getting ready?
It’s been hard because I miss competing comradery that you get from a team; however, I know that in this business, there are always lots of great, talented players that are unsigned at this time. I know that in a blink of an eye, situations can change.
It seems like good guards on the market is as common like finding apples in an orchard. Do you think that the competition of guards on the market in general has been a problem?
Honestly, I think there is always competition at every position because there are way more talented, hungry players than spots on professional teams.
Was there any particular reason why Giessen didn´t keep you? Did head coach Denis Wucherer want to go in a new direction?
Firstly, I would like to say that Giessen was a great basketball city and I really enjoyed my time there, and working with Coach Wucherer was a great experience. Coach Wucherer, myself and my agent discussed my return to Giessen, but at the end of the day, the situation did not work out.
A year ago you played for the Rockingham Flames (Australia-SBL) during the spring. Was there not a chance that you would play there again this year or was there a conflict in schedule with Giessen?
The season with Giessen did go a lot longer than my season with Braunschweig. Also, I was not looking to play in Australia this past year because last summer I only had 12 days to visit family and friends. However, I am hoping to go back to play in Australia this summer because I had a great time with the Rockingham Flames.
Was the German Pro A all that that you expected it to be? You came from the German Pro B and had a solid season with the Giessen 46ers.
Yes, I found the German Pro A to be a really exciting league with a lot of good quality players.
You had a bit of a slower start to the first half of your season, but in the second half you averaged 13.4 points and 4.5 assists. What would you attribute your success in the second half of the season to?
I think with a new team, especially as a point guard, you always have to find your rhythm of where and when in the offense your opportunities can come from. In the second half, I felt more comfortable and with injuries, my team needed me to step up more offensively.
What was your season highlight last year with Giessen? You had some big games like the 27 point game against BG Karlsruhe or the 22 point effort against NBC or your 16 points in the game five playoff win against Science City Jena?
I think my season highlight was the game five playoff win against Science City Jena. It was amazing to get that win after we worked so hard all season, and to get it in front of all our dedicated Giessen fans was unforgettable.
How much will you miss playing with the athletic Myles Hesson?
It was really fun playing with Myles; he is one of the most athletic players that I have had the chance to play with, and as a point guard, it is always great to have someone like that to look for on the court.
If you could describe yourself in a few sentences as to how you could help any team now how would you do it?
I am a true point guard in that I always look for opportunities to involve my teammates. Combine this with my speed and quickness, I open up the floor and can attack defenses very effectively, and conversely, can put a lot of pressure on opposing point guards. Finally, I have an unmatched will to win that I believe can help me overcome any obstacle.
How does a normal work out day look like for Steven Bennett on and off the court?
I typically wake up at 6:30am for an early morning basketball workout. After that, I get some cardio in (either jump rope, sprints, or cycling). I come back to the gym in the afternoon and usually get some scrimmages in and lift some weights at the end of the night.
What was the coolest ALS Ice Bucket challenge that you saw recently?
They are all cool to me because they are raising awareness for a terrible disease.
How was watching the United States in the 2014 World Championships in Spain?
It was fun to watch the young USA basketball team, and see where we stack up in terms of the world basketball scene. I was hoping for a Spain vs. USA final, but maybe we will see that in the next Olympics.
What was the last DVD movie that you saw?
Now You See Me.
Thanks Steve for the chat.