Saturday, December 14, 2013

Edwin Cancel Is Becoming A Man

Class of 2016 point guard, Edwin Cancel decided to leave Puerto Rico in August to attend St. Benedicts Prep in New Jersey. Cancel was widely considered to be one of the top point guards on the island. Now at St. Benedicts Cancel is learning what it takes to play at the highest level of high school basketball. IPRB had a chance to catch up with Cancel earlier today. Q: You have now been at St. Benedicts for over three months. What has been your biggest challenge? A:My greatest challenge was leaving my family, my friends and my school. The fact that I am not the man in basketball and I have to fight for my position. Q: You injured your ankle and that kept you out almost a month. Are you fully healthy? A:I'm healthy. I need to work more on my speed and my body. I'm working hard everyday to get stronger and working on getting my ankle stronger. Q: St. Benedicts is loaded at the guard position this year led by VCU commit Jon Williams, Central Conn. commit Shakaris Laney and juniors Kamar McKnight and Elijah Cain. Coach Taylor didn't want you to waste the year sitting behind those guys so he asked you to play on the Prep Team to get prepared for a major role next year. How did you feel about that when Coach told you? A: It's only going to help me get prepared for next year because when I play against kids my age I'm going to be prepared physically and mentally for the challenge. Q:What is the biggest difference between basketball in Puerto Rico and the states? A: The difference is the athleticism, skill level of the players and the height of the players. Q:You are 5'9 and like many of the small guards coming from Puerto Rico you are having to prove you can compete at this level. What do you have to do to prove yourself? A:I have to prove that I can plat at 100% full speed at all times. I also have to prove I can knockdown my jump shot consistently and play lockdown defense. Q: Jon Williams (VCU commit) is widely considered to be one of the top point guards in the class of 2014. What are you learning from him? A: I'm learning how to play PG. I'm learning how to dominate being a small PG. I'm always watching how he plays defense and he has motivated me to play better defense. He is a really good guy and lots of fun to be around. Q: You will be playing Varsity on certain trips and tournaments. The team is coming to PR next week to play against the high school tournament in Mayaguez. How excited are you about that? Can anybody beat you guys? A: I'm very excited. I get to see my friends and family and play at home for one of the top teams in the nation. None of the teams in PR can beat us! We have the size, speed and IQ plus we have great role players who understand their role? Q: What is it like going to school with guys you grew up playing with in Puerto Rico? A: It's a blessing going to school with my brothers that I grew up with in PR. We take care of each other! Q: A lot of people are wondering if you made the right decision going to St. Benedict's. You could be starting on the varsity at most high schools in the states and a superstar in Puerto Rico. Are you sure you made the right decision? A: This situation has forced me to mature. At first I was going to transfer because I wasn't the man here. Then I realized I'm at one of the top programs in the country so if I transferred that would have been a loser move. And for sure I'm not a loser. I'm motivated to work hard and prove myself like I'm doing now. I definitely feel like this was the right decision.