I think those that are saying that Bassett is egotistical or arrogant should listen to the inner circle podcast. Provided very measured and clear answers.
Yes Bassett says she wanted to go to a team that wanted her. Let’s all put ourselves in Bassett’s shoes or think about your own team or workplace. Don’t you want to go to your game or work place and feel part of a team that wants you in it? That’s a normal healthy human feeling. That isn’t arrogant.
Bassett was very honest regarding her form saying that she didn’t have a great 2019 and barely played in 2020 so she understands that other SSN teams wouldn’t be rushing to sign her up.
Bassett spoke about understanding that she might not be diamonds captain. She doesn’t expect to walk into that. The players wanted for her previously and they might not next time. For now her priority is to get on court and be selected to play for Australia. She still holds leadership aspirations.
Bassett did not expect to walk into court time at Giants just because she is Diamonds captain. She spoke with admiration for the SSN teams that rotated 3 shooters well. Did comment on asking to play with Austin. This is where Bassett’s and Fitzgerald’s comments differ. Bassett doesn’t believe it was really given a chance at training.
Ian posted an interesting statistic in another thread. When Austin and Bassett were on court together Giants outscored their opponents. That included time in a game where the Giants were flogged so their other combinations were being outplayed. The statistics speak for themselves in terms of results when Bassett did play.
It is clear that Bassett did think other combinations should be trialled. But in no way does she think she and Austin should have played the full 60 every week. For those saying it must not have been great for Harten to hear Bassett saying she wanted to play with Austin well surely Harten is big enough to say sure another combination and a chance to win. In Bassett’s words they want to win. If Harten isn’t big enough to take that on board as captain well she shouldn’t be captain. Note I am not saying Harten would have had a problem however, it is intimated above that it wouldn’t have been nice for Harten.
Bassett was doing extras and playing scratch matches with bench players from rival clubs. Now put yourselves in the shoes of being the Aussie captain and tuning up to that with a bunch of rookies from rival clubs. I can’t imagine that was easy but she did it and didn’t complain. It was in one of those matches that she injured her knee.
Bassett spoke about the difference between playing a quarter or a half and coming off and on multiple times a game. For the former she was able to rely on her experience of being an impact player for Diamonds when she first made the Australian team. For the latter she hasn’t had a lot of experience and playing 10 minutes then coming off then going back in during quarters etc. She found that challenging and in her opinion combinations can take time to settle and she shared these thoughts at training.
Bassett spoke of believing that the super shot hid the problems the Giants had on court. In her opinion if they nailed the basics in the first 10 of each quarter then they would not be so reliant on the super shot. But they weren’t playing well so they needed to continually rely on the super shot at the end of quarters to get back into games and as she said in those circumstances of course you put your best long range shooters on. However, if they played well in regular time they wouldn’t be in this scenario and they needed to nail the basics but they weren’t. I think if we go back into any Giants match thread and it would show this theme. Giants being down and us all saying that the score flattered Giants due to a couple of super shots. Bassett is right they weren’t nailing the basics. That shouldn’t offend anyone.
Bassett spoke positively of her experience in the hub and thanks giants for letting her drive to Brisbane to take her dog (and own car). The Giants team DR was the one responsible for the well Being of players and she spoke well about that experience and the access to psychologists (as well as the broader well being support from NA).
The only two comments that I believe could even be remotely seen as negative however, I would say are constructive feedback were in respect of culture and the Giants’ culture compared to Lightning’s. Note that Bassett was asked to compare them she didn’t voluntarily compare them.
Bassett was of the view that standards some times slipped at Giants. She spoke about how when she was a young player it was drilled into her the standards that were to be expected and in her opinion they sometimes slipped at Giants. Now if I am Giants or a Giants fan I want them to look into that. Remember Bassett just won two titles at Lightning. She knows what it takes. If Giants keep doing what they have always done or what Fitzgerald always did at Magic well they probably won’t win. As we know if you always do what you always did you get what you always got! If there are ways to improve here they should explore them not be offended. After all Giants came 6th. They didn’t perform and therefore, do need to change something.
Secondly, whilst Bassett made the comment that you don’t need to be best friends off court to perform it was difficult in a larger city for the players to catch up socially. That may be but Swifts and Vixens don’t seem to have this issue. So in my opinion Giants should look at this. Maybe there is nothing there but from a team bonding experience and inclusivity perspective it’d be worth exploring at the very least.
I am actually not a Bassett fan. I have long wished for Thwaites to be handed the Diamonds GS bib . However, I don’t believe that Bassett needs to have her character persecuted based on what has happened. Listening to Bassett speak on the inner circle confirmed she is doing what is best for her netball going forward and in no way was she bitter or arrogant. She simply wants to play and win.
Lastly, the results and statistics speak for themselves. Giants didn’t perform. They could have used Bassett to change things up off the bench but refused to. Their call and they went home early.