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The student news site of Woodbridge Middle School

The Warrior Messenger

The student news site of Woodbridge Middle School

The Warrior Messenger

The student news site of Woodbridge Middle School

The Warrior Messenger

Kai Dowell: How he got into AAU

Jonathan Cruz
Kai Dowell plays for AAU basketball team

JONATHAN CRUZ: I’m Jonathan Cruz from The Warrior Messenger, what’s your name?


KAI DOWELL: Kai Dowell


JC: Do I have your consent to record?


Kai: Yes.


JC: How did you hear about AAU?


Kai: So, like, I played rec with Wizards, like a team  in Woodbridge and the coach from the Wizards asked me if I would like to play for his team and I said ‘yea’ and that’s how I started.   That happened when I was 9. That was 2 years ago.


JC: What made you interested in AAU?


 Kai: I always play sports because my dad wants me to and after covid I was trying out for sports and when I first got on the team and when I saw my team I just really like it.


JC: Were the tryouts hard?


Kai: Yes, they were hard, but it matters what team you’re trying out for.  It could be a bad team and the tryouts could be eazy.  But if you play for a good team the tryouts would be harder but for me it was pretty hard for me to get on a team. But I made it.


JC: What team workouts do you do?

Kai: So now I don’t play for the Wizards [anymore] so we do team workouts every Friday or Wednesdays and we practice at NJCU and we pracice for 2 hours and 30 minutes or 7:30 to 10:30.


JC: Who inspired you to play basketball?


Kai: Probably my cousin Carlos.  I’ve known him for my whole life and I played football before I played basketball with him and he would destroy me when we played basketball.  And then I wanted to play basketball so I started playing basketball and he was the one that inspired me to play basketball.


JC: What advice would you give somebody that m[l= wants to join AAU?


Kai: I would say put work into it because if you really want to be playing on a team and play in tournaments and get playing time you need to train. It might be a lot but you got to do it if you want to be good and play on a good team.


JC: How many games have you won this season?


Kai: So this season we played 3 tournaments and I think we won 9 or 6 but we don’t have that many teammates, but we’re building right now.


JC: How has AAU helped you?


Kai: So when I have nothing to do at home I’ll be like ‘oh I have practice’ or at practice it helps find new friends because once you get on a team it’s like your family members and you get along really well.


JC: Have you become a better team player?


Kai: Becoming a better player the most important thing is probably getting to know your teammates because if you don’t have a good relationship with your teammates then you’re probably not gonna play good with them.  But if you have sleepovers and stuff and hang out with them and build your relationship with them and you would have better chemistry with them.


JC: What have you learned about teamwork from playing with the team?


Kai: What I learned is you gotta try to be a leader.


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