Jets have re-signed dynamic forward Shawn Myers ahead of the new season
as they look to defend the BBL Championship.
Singleton is thrilled to have returned one of his key players and highlights
the importance of familiarity and the successful partnership the pair have
“Shawn is an excellent
player and this is my third season playing with him”, said Singleton, “We
had a Championship season up in Glasgow (2002-03) and we had a Championship
season last year together. Every time myself and Shawn Myers have
been playing together it has been a successful situation so that was one
of the main reasons for bringing him back”.
Myers has twice featured
in the BBL All-Star team and has matched that feat elsewhere in his career
including Iceland and Lithuania. He has also tasted success in the
BBL to the tune of a BBL Championship and Playoff trophy.
The Trinidad &
Tobago native posted big numbers in the Jets Championship season as he
scored 19.43 points (9th in BBL) and 7.33 rebounds per game in
2004/05, he was
also tenth in the league for steals with 1.83 per game, but Coach Singleton
believes that the intangibles are just as important a part of his
“Shawn has been a
consistent 20-point scorer, he has been posting 8-10 rebounds per game
throughout his career. But I think Shawn brings an intensity and
energy to the game that is very important. He is also a very versatile
defensive player, at 6’7”, last year he was asked to guard some of the
top guards in the league as well as some of the top post players, he’s
very agile and very versatile”.
The capture of Myers’
signature represents the fourth player to return from last year’s league-topping
team. Player/coach Billy Singleton has also brought
back captain Calvin
Davis and point guard Anthony Martin,
“We have got the
core of the team back and that’s what we were looking to do. Continuity
was my first priority and so far I’ve done that and I’m feeling really
good about the fact
that we have got most of our guys back”.
have confirmed that Andrew Sullivan will be returning to Tyneside for a
second season with the club.
The England International
was instrumental in helping the Eagles win two trophies during the last
campaign and his signature represents a major boost for player/coach Fabulous
Flournoy who has now secured the return of five key players.
The Londoner ended
the 2004/05 season on a high after scooping the MVP award in the Play-Off
Final and has since carried his impressive form onto the International
stage in recent months with the England team.
He said “Once I decided
that I was coming back to play in the BBL and would be focusing my efforts
on the Commonwealth Games I was never going to go anywhere else. I feel
comfortable in Newcastle both with the players, the staff and the club.
Why wouldn't I want to be a part of what everyone is trying to achieve
He added: “The Commonwealth
Games was one of the most important factors in my decision to stay with
the Eagles and I can’t wait to be part of the England team who
will be looking
to make history. It is an important stage of my career and one that I am
excited about. We have the opportunity as a group of players to put in
at the Games and that is what I fully expect us to do.”
Flournoy has already
snapped up rookie power forward Damien Argrett from Pfeiffer University
in North Carolina.
The 6'8" New Yorker
will replace Rocks-bound Frank Bennett on the Eagles' roster.
Flournoy told the
Chronicle: "Damien has a good pedigree and is sound in all of the fundamentals.
His work ethic and defensive-minded attitude is just what I was looking
"He played 20 minutes
in college and yet averaged 20 points and over five rebounds during that
time. He is a solid guy that has been well coached and I knew after watching
him for just 10 minutes he could be a fit for us."
Scots raid England
for top talent
Scottish Rocks coach
Steve Swanson underlined his plans to buy British this season by making
Julius Joseph and Germayne Forbes his first captures of the summer.
Sport England has
provided funding for those players who will take part next March’s Commonwealth
Games to ply their trade on home soil this term. And Swanson has exploited
the policy and held off a rival bid from Sheffield Sharks to land the versatile
“I love getting British
talent and the fact that England Basketball have arranged for all their
guys to get an extra stipend presents all BBL clubs with a chance to bring
back the best homegrown players,” Swanson said. “The rules are set up for
that this season and although we’re looking for four good imports, I want
Scottish and English guys who can contribute and take us to the next level.
“The great irony
is that although we’re the Scottish Rocks, I’ve probably coached more England
internationals here over the last three years than anyone else. They want
to come here because they know they’ll get a fair chance to play.”
Forbes played with
Hungarian side Gunaras KC Dombóvár last year and averaged
19.7 points and 4.7 rebounds per game but has been in stunning form for
England this summer.
Swanson added: "Germayne
is a skilled player with European experience, and we hope he can have a
major impact on our team this year.
“He is a tremendous
young talent who has been a very solid player with the England National
Team this summer.”
Swanson is also holding
talks with 6’6” American forward Jean Francois who has just left Georgia
Brighton Bears have
announced their first signings of the summer with the return of Andrew
Alleyne and Ronnie Baker.
Last season Alleyne,
36, had arguably his best season yet as the fans voted him Bears' Most
Valuable Player and he was also MVP in Bears BBL Cup triumph. The
Barbadian international led the team in scoring with 19.69 points per game,
which was seventh highest in the BBL, and also pulled down 7.81 rebounds
The vastly experienced
Baker, also 36, is the most capped player in English Basketball history
and was voted Bears' Most Inspirational Player by supporters in the end
of season awards. Last season he scored 7.04 points and dished out
3 assists per game.
Bears' coach Nick
Nurse said, "They are big-time fans favourites and they are reliable and
consistent. It's nice to have that. I don't know if Ronnie will be going
to the Commonwealth Games. England always seem to want to replace him and
he always fights his way back. I hope he goes there and represents us."
Point guard Baker
took over from Ryan Huntley when he picked up a season-ending injury last
term. In response to news of Huntley's departure to join the Leicester
Riders, Nurse added: "I probably didn't move quickly enough to get Ryan
back. Maybe he didn't want to come back."
Raiders’ Head Coach Gary Stronach is celebrating another success with the
news that off guard Allister Gall has re-signed for the club.
Gall spent three
years in America at college, played one season in Ireland and last season
returned home to Plymouth to join Stronach as the Raiders moved into the
BBL. He enjoyed considerable success and was selected for try out
with the England squad at the end of the season.
offers from several clubs on the continent he was committed to the Raiders
cause and eager to help the club establish themselves in the BBL.
He is likely to once again be a key component as the Raiders hunt for BBL
success, last season he averaged 13.50 points per game.
“Allister was a key
member of our first BBL squad last season and I always wanted him back
with us," said Stronach. "I feared that he may leave us for one of the
offers he received but we were able to give him a little bit of the home
town stability he wanted and I will value his involvement both on the court
and out in the community."
Bullets Kash in
have agreed to terms with 6’9” American forward Kashien Latham, a product
of NCAA Division 1 college Georgia Southern, where he was a productive
scorer and rebounder with 13.3 points and 9.6 rebounds per
game (2nd in Conference)
in 2000-01 and 11.1ppg and 9.1rpg in 2001-02.
He is also an experienced
professional after being drafted by the Kansas Cagerz of the USBL and the
Greenville Groove of the NBDL. He has also played for Al Ahili (Jordan
- First League) where he put up an astonishing 24.2 points and 12.5 rebounds
Last season he was
a solid performer for the Atlanta Vision of the ABA, posting 15.6 points
and 8.7 rebounds per game. In addition he has also been playing in
the Mexican pro league (LNBP) previously this summer.
Bullets new player/coach,
Skouson Harker, said: “He is the type of guy we need in order to
compete in this league. He is tough as nails yet has finesse and
he can score and rebound with the best of them.”
Bullets also signed
6’7’’ small forward Jeff Bonds, formerly of California Poly Pomona University
of the NCAA II.
Jeff had a stellar
four-year career at Cal-Poly Pomona as he was named All-CCAA First Team
and West Region MVP in 2002-03. He was also an All-CCAA First Team
and West Region First Team in 2003-04, 2004-05.
have raided Brighton to secure the services of veteran forward Tony Holley
and point guard Ryan Huntley ahead of the 2005/06 season.
The 37 year-old Holley
has been a dominant force in the British game for almost 15 years and has
also played in Ireland, Switzerland and Israel.
“Tony is a veteran
guy who has been around the league and knows everything there is to know
about the BBL”, said Coach Karl Brown, “he’ll bring some stability to us
inside and I’m delighted to have him on board”.
“He is a proven player
in this league but more importantly he is a proven winner, and that is
the sort of mentality that I’m after”.
Blood ties to
Milton Keynes Lions
have re-signed 6’7” power forward Robert Youngblood.
The 34-year-old joined
the Lions during last season following spells with BBL rivals London Leopards
and more recently London Towers. The power forward has won the BBL Championship
as well as the BBL Cup in his time in England, as well as spells in the
11.3 points and 7.20 rebounds per game for the Milton Keynes side last
season, and holds a career average in excess of 16pts per game. He played
in 31 games for the Lions last term. Lions owner Vince Macaulay was delighted
at the signing,
“Robert brought a
lot of veteran leadership to us last season and actually improved the game
of a number of his team mates, he is the kind of guy you never want to
se in opposition colours.”
Lions Head Coach,
Nigel Lloyd, who is currently coaching the Barbados National team in Costa
Rica, added: “You cannot quantify all the little things Robert brings to
the table, if we aim to finish in the top four then he is vital to those