A MAGIC minute with Bryn Jones
How many years did you play for the Wildcats? 1982 to 1984
When did you represent Australia? Under 20’s tour of Japan and Korea 1977, Boomers test matches against European clubs Cibona and Jugoplastika (then Yugoslavia but now Croatia) - 1980
What is your best memory of playing for the Wildcats? In 1982 when we joined the NBL as the Westate Wildcats no one expected too much. In game 1 we got flogged by Geelong by 30 points with future Wildcat legends James Crawford and Cal Bruton doing most of the damage for Geelong. We then lost the next 2 games. My most memorable Wildcat experience however came in the fourth game when we upset Canberra Canons by 16 points to record the Wildcats first ever win in the NBL. I guess another reason I have fond memories of that game was my personal stats of 12 rebounds and 30 second half points.
What was the travel like in the early days? Travelling with the Wildcats was fantastic. We had a lot of fun but at times it was also pretty demanding. In those days we sometimes had 3 game weekend road trips. One of the trips which I’ll never forget was in 1982. We played on the Friday night and I rolled an ankle during the game. On the Saturday morning our Manager whizzed me off to physio where I was treated and strapped for the Saturday night game. Then in that game I rolled the other ankle. With no physio open on Sunday our Manager strapped both my ankles and I played the Sunday lunchtime fixture... my nose got busted by Coburg Giants Benny Lewis’ head. Not much fun getting off the Ansett Airways plane in Perth - limping on both ankles with eyes like a racoon from the broken nose. In those days apparently players sometimes had a few beers after the game. Not me though!
Who is the best player you have played with? That’s a tough one as I have played with so many great players. Phil Smyth and Larry Sengstock are both my age and went on to become Australian basketball legends. Tim Evans from 1982 Wildcats was an amazing player, Roland Brooks from early 90s SBL was perhaps the most athletic player and Dan Hunt from the Buccs SBL had a huge heart.
What does it mean to you being on the magic coaching staff? Playing basketball for 40 or so years has provided me with some memorable experiences. I now feel privileged to be on the Magic coaching staff. This is a great team and a great club. Being involved as a coach gives me a chance to give something back to the game and to share some experience with the younger guys. But to be perfectly honest, to me the best part of basketball has always been winning games. Coaching with the Magic enables me to continue doing that. I LOVE IT!