American college basketball coach Jamie Dixon helped Steven Adams get to the NBA and now he's recruited another promising young Kiwi.
Angus McWilliam, a 6"11 (210.8cm) centre of Middleton Grange High School in Christchurch, will link up with coach Dixon at Texas Christian University next year.
TCU, as it is more commonly known as, is a highly respected American university known for its sports programmes – mainly in American football, baseball and athletics.
Seventeen-year-old McWilliam will hope to be the latest success story out of TCU thanks to Dixon,
the man who coached Adams to NBA stardom when he was at Pittsburgh.
"He gets Kiwis," McWilliam said.
"He knows our kind of humour, he lived here, played here for a couple of years - so he gets Kiwis. He knows how to nurture them and he knows how to get a Kiwi to the NBA."
Dixon spotted McWilliam at a tournament in Las Vegas last year and had to see him on his home court.
"He came out about Easter time, came and talked to the family, had a sit down and dinner with us - that was really nice just to be able to socialise with him and my family," McWilliam said.
While Adams' potential close to the rim excited Dixon, McWilliam’s has a different set of skills for a big man - his ball handling rare for someone his size.
But it's what Adams has done off the court that McWilliam wants to replicate.
"What Steven Adams has done, coming from a real humble background in NZ to being one of the most highly paid players on the Thunder roster; What he's done a lot of us younger guys look up to.
"It's really inspiring to see what he's done – it shows it's possible."
And if McWilliam can follow that same path, it could be him inspiring the next generation of Kiwi basketballers.
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