Freshman forward for the Grossmont Men’s Basketball team, Ronald Blain, has won PCAC Player of the Week back-to-back times after kick-starting a 2-win week for the Griffins.
Earlier this week I was able to sit down with the Griffin star to gather his thoughts on how this season has played out so far for the Griffins basketball team and what he is looking forward to in the final stretch of the regular-season schedule.
– 2x PCAC Player of the Week
– Height: 6’ 5”
– Weight: 195 lbs.
– Number: 20
– Hometown: McDonough, GA
– High School: Union Grove
– Transfer from San Diego Christian
– Position: Forward
– Year: Freshman
– Age: 19
– Major: Communications
– Statistical Averages Per Game: Points – 12 Rebounds – 8 Field Goal % – 46
– Team has a 13-12 record, 5-3 in conference play
Q: How would you describe your team’s performance so far this year?
A: “A little up and down. We started off pretty well, then we caught fire after Thanksgiving break, coming in 2nd place at our home tournament. Then after that we won the Santa Barbara tourney. But once we came back we hit a rut and things went sour. We ended up losing 6 (games) straight, taking a toll on our 8-5 record. It was pretty tough going through that losing streak, it really affected our team’s morale. I’m kind of scared that our 6 straight losses are going to affect our playoff chances. But we’ll just have to grind out the remaining few games.”
Q: How would you describe your personal performance?
A: “I started off pretty slow but I’ve kept progressing. My individual performance has been increasing in conference play even more so. My free throw percentage has been going up and my points per game has as well. I’ve just been trying to find different ways to score.”
Q: What aspect of your game are you most proud of?
A: “Being able to adapt to playing the post due to my team’s lack of size. I’m originally a guard. Whatever it takes to help my team win, I’ll do it. I take great pride in being able to adapt to new positions.”
Q: What will you do personally to help your team as you go down the final stretch of the regular season schedule?
A: “Continue what I’ve been doing. Rebound, provide a leadership presence, score down low, come off the bench and help my team anyway possible.”
Q: Do you plan on pursuing a career in the field of basketball?
A: “Whether it be playing basketball, a managerial position, trainer, that basketball is gonna pay the bills one way or another.”
Q: If there was any basketball player, past or present, you could sit down and have a conversation with who would it be?
A: “Female? Skylar Diggins (WNBA), she is so hot… Male? LeBron James, I just wanna see where his mind is at.”
Q: Who is your biggest role model?
A: “Definitely my grandma. My grandma is always pushing me, expecting greatness. She is always there for me. Athletics wise, it’s a combination of people and certain aspects about them. I’d have Odell Beckham’s (New York Giants WR) fashion, James Harden’s (Houston Rockets G) scoring and passion for the game, Jimmy Butler’s (Chicago Bulls G) willingness to not give up and make his way up to stardom through the junior college system, LeBron James’ (Cleveland Cavaliers F) winning tradition, Kyrie Irving’s (Cleveland Cavaliers G) laid back personality, and John Cena’s care for the community.”
Q: Who do you try to model your game after?
A; “I just do me, but I’d love to play like James Harden of the Houston Rockets. His scoring ability is out of this world…”
Q: What’s the craziest thing that has happened to you on a basketball court?
A: “The craziest thing was when a 5’9’’ kid dunked on me… thank god no one got it on camera!”
Q: What have you learned this season that is most valuable to you?
A: “Don’t stop, don’t settle. Don’t shoot the three-pointer, drive to the hoop. Our coaches have engraved that into our brains.That’s how I got my crazy dunk against S.D. City.”
Q: Is there any feeling greater than dunking on someone?
A: “Yes. Winning championships. Simple. You can dunk on someone but they can still wave a ring in your face. But at the moment nothing is better than dunking. Signing a letter of intent is one of the best feelings ever as well.”
Q: Favorite professional sports teams?
A: “Yankees… Derek Jeter, A-Rod, Mariano Rivera are all legends. NFL? My team is the New England Patriots. Tom Brady is the greatest of all time! I don’t have a favorite NBA team, but I love to see LeBron win.”
Q: What aspect of your game do you think needs the most improvement?
A: “Probably ball-handling and strength if I want to move up to the next level. I’m not going to be able to compete if I don’t increase those attributes. But all-around I should try to improve at everything.”
Q: What does Ronald Blain play for?
A: “I play to win. I don’t like losing. I can have the worst statistical night but I could care less about how many points I score if we win. The “W” column is all that matters. Long term, I have a career in professional basketball in the back of my head but right now I’m concerned with getting a scholarship, and once I get that all the little things will fall into place.”