Javonte Maynor is a 6-foot-1 guard averaging 18 points at South Gwinnett, which has won 12 of its last 13 games. Maynor, who will play at Georgia State next season, had a game-winning 3-pointer in Saturday’s 71-69 victory against Blessed Trinity. He talked basketball recently with Michael Alpert, who filed this report for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Q. Why basketball?
A. When I was younger, football was my favorite sport. But in about eighth grade, I just started directing my attention more toward basketball. I thought I had a better chance career-wise in basketball.
Q. What’s it like following in the footsteps of South Gwinnett's Louis Williams, now playing for the Philadelphia 76ers?
A. Nobody has won a state championship [for South Gwinnett] after him [in 2004]. I have to come out and perform at a Division I level and prove to everybody I can.
Q. Is this the year the Comets can win Class AAAAA?
A. We’re on track, but right now our chemistry is a little off. If we play a little more as a team and build our defense a little better, we can be one of the top teams in the state.
Q. Any embarrassing moments?
A. I had a free throw in crunch time [against Blessed Trinity]. I was looking at my coach [Scott Bracco] just as the ref threw me the ball. When I turned around, I stepped into the paint and they called a turnover.
Q. What’s it like being part of a backcourt with senior John Harris, who averages a team-high 20 points a game?
A. If other teams double-team me, I know he’ll be open on the other side. It’s hard for teams to defend both of us at the same time. Some games, one of us will be on and not the other. But when we’re both on, it can be a blowout.
Q. What are you proudest of?
A. I’m proud to be an honor roll student and make all A's and B's. I’m proud of my basketball, but my academics, too.
B. What’s your favorite NBA team?
A. I’d say Cleveland. I’m a big LeBron James fan. I’m all into that Kobe [Bryant] vs. LeBron thing.
Q. Did you envision so much success this season?
A. It’s going just like I planned. I knew we had this kind of potential, but we still have more work to do, including me individually.
Q. What’s your favorite sport that doesn’t use a ball?
A. I like watching ultimate fighting. It’s not something I’d really ever do, but I like seeing somebody get knocked out.
Q. What scares you most?
A. Skydiving. I definitely couldn’t do that.
Q. Has the improvement of girls basketball kept up with the boys’ game?
A. Our games might be more competitive, but our last couple of girls games have been really close and have been exciting for the fans, too.
Q. What are your expectations at Georgia State?
A. I expect to come in and help out and maybe even start because they have a couple of players leaving. Basically, I want to just play smart and not try to do too much.
Q. What aspect of your game do you wish was better?
A. I’d like to get to the free throw line more. I’m a good free throw shooter. I just need to draw more fouls and get there more.”