Sebastien Michineau: The French Caribbean Prospect
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TORONTO, ON–South of the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, North of St Lucia and Barbados is a French Caribbean island by the name of Guadeloupe, the land where Sebastien Michineau commenced his basketball dream.
Sebastien now persists on his ambitions on Canadian soil where he plays for Metro Prep in Toronto, Ontario. Michineau is a 6’1 European-style speedy point guard with great foot-work and natural use of the “euro-step.”
“I played in France for four years and that’s where I graduated. I wanted to go the United States at first but then I met Phil [Dixon] and got the opportunity to come to Canada,” explains Michineau in a soft, mellow accent.
The Phil Dixon mentioned-“Dr. Dix,” is the same fellow that once dominated Canadian basketball, averaging a ridiculous 40 PPG in high school. Dixon is regarded as one of Canada’s all-time greats after enjoying his years at the University of Utah, later playing professionally in Europe. In 2003,he was dubbed “King of Canada” in Nike’s first one-on-one” battle grounds” championship.
Dixon has assisted Sebastien’s transition into the country and has even shared his home, as they live together, similar to accommodations made for international players in the U.S (Findlay Prep, St. Benedict’s, Boston Trinity, etc.)
Since Michineau’s arrival in October, he has flourished under Dixon and Metro Prep Head Coach, Anish Bhalla both as a player and individual.
“As a person, he is one of the most humble, loyal and respectful kids I have met. He carries himself with a quiet dignity and confidence. He is a great student that worked hard to learn English and was on the honour roll last semester, explained Bhalla.
On the court, he is a killer; he prides himself on his defence and is one of the most confident players I have seen. He knocks down big shots for us consistently,” continues Bhalla.
While in Guadeloupe, Sebastien took part in Mickael Pietrus’ camp where he was able to build a relationship with the Orlando Magic guard, also native of Les Abymes, Guadeloupe.
However, Pietrus is not the only NBA player that Michineau has managed to rub shoulders with.
“Rodrigues and I are very good friends who is also from [Point-A-Pitre] Quadeloupe,” referring to Dallas Mavericks rookie guard, Rodrigues Beaubois.
“I remember my first experience there was very good because they took me to a camp in Atlanta for two weeks.”
Although the 6’1 point guard has had a successful season thus far with Metro Prep, he points out the contrasting brand of basketball played in North America.
Midway through a question, Sebastien emphatically interrupts, “The game in Canada and the United States are very different [in comparison to France]. In Canada the game is more one on one, and the players can play.”
“In France, there are more systems, you have to pass the ball and take your time; a little bit like the NCAA.”
It is quite fitting for Michineau to mention the premier post secondary league in North America, as it is likely where he will be heading.
Michineau is currently garnering interest from Florida A&M, St Louis University and UC-Irvine (potentially joining Canadian Adam Folker of Markham, Ontario).
“First of all, I have to graduate first. My English isn’t very good but I’m doing well right now, so I have to pass three courses to graduate and I’m trying to go to the United States to play in the D1”
Though Michineau has experienced NBA training through his time at various camps and is in constant contact with two leaguers, he is yet to witness Canada’s only NBA team in action.
“I was supposed to go to the Raptors game, Michael Pietrus called me and told me to come, but I had two games of my own that day.”