Posted On: 10/12/18 8:00 AM

Jeron Artest is a combo guard from Hillcrest Prep. You may know him as being the son of NBA Champion, Ron Artest. However, I know him as the super intelligent/coach-able PG from Hillcrest Prep. Jeron is one of my favorite talents in AZ and I think he can go as far as his work ethic takes him in this game. 

1. Introduce yourself. Tell me a little bit about yourself.

I’m Jeron Artest 2020 Combo Guard for Hillcrest Prep.

2. Let’s talk about your family. Being the son of a NBA Champion can’t be easy right? Do you feel like you have to live up to your dad or are you just focused on creating your own path?

Being the son of an NBA Champion is very difficult. I have always had to live up to my dad as a basketball player because he is a champion, but I’m also focused on my own path. The pressure of being his son taught me a lot, so I’m learning how to deal with most situations thrown at me. I have high expectations for myself. When I was 7 years old, I didn’t want to rest until I perfected playing with my left hand. I remember other kids dad’s would scream “make him go left” without even knowing me. My dad’s career is a guideline to forge my own path. I take the parts that I believe match my own goals and be the best version of my parents. 

3. From our workout, I could immediately tell that you are a very coach-able player and very knowledgeable. Where does that coach-ability come from?

I had a lot of great coaches over the years. Everyone has some insight on the game, so I make sure that I take it in. I know I probably have one perspective, so when having someone else’s experience or expertise it only makes sense to pay attention. The best coaches bring out the best in their players, they spoke to me, they knew I could play and learn the game to win. If you don’t listen to everything or aren’t coachable you won’t be able to catch the good parts or the things that relate to you. 

4. How’s is recruiting going? Any offers?

My recruiting is going well. I have a lot of interest from Stanford, Cal Berkeley, Santa Clara, Nevada, Butler, Princeton, Colorado State, Kansas State, San Jose State, UC Irvine, Pepperdine, University of Hawaii, Arkansas, and offers from Wyoming and St. John’s University. 

5. How has your experience been at Hillcrest Prep?

My experience at Hillcrest has been great. My teammates and the staff are cool. We play amazing competition every night, and I get to work out 2-3 times a day. I have access to multiple facilities and serious trainers. Phoenix is just basketball and desert. Nothing else to do but get better and better. It’s literally like bootcamp, but in a big city. 

6. What do you think is your biggest strength on the court?

Like I said, I always want to push myself so being great at one skill is not enough. Shooting and defense are my biggest strengths and I bring a lot of energy to my teams. We get hype on defense, and that energy transfers over to the offense.

7. What is something you feel like you need to improve on?

I can always improve my basketball knowledge, there’s a lot of little things that I see more experienced players do sometimes that make the game easier. 

8. Talk about school. How important is academics to you? What is your current GPA?

School is important as basketball is to me. I have a 4.2 GPA, got 5’s on multiple AP exams and took my first SAT last year and scored 1450. There are some scholars that are balling out in the NBA. I noticed the best players are pretty smart and make the most of basketball. 

9. Who do you try to model your game after?

I try to model my game after all the great point guards, especially Steve Nash, Tony Parker, Rondo, Chris Mullin, Shammgod, Steve Kerr, Magic. But that only makes my game more unique, I imagine myself as my dad’s young self in the point guard position. 

10. Why basketball? Why do you play? Why do you love basketball?

My first real word was “ball!” I always had a ball in my hand and wanted to play. When I see people playing the game, I get the urge to lace up. Most of all I noticed that I don’t feel like myself when I don’t play basketball for long periods of time. I always want to win. I always want to workout. I always want to recover. I love to be on the court. The only way to explain that is because I love the game.