History Made by the Raptors 905 as they win first ever D-League Championship

0

In the past two years, there have been many historic basketball moments for the city of Toronto. Last year, it was the Toronto Raptors, who made their first Eastern Conference Final in franchise history.

The Raptors took a huge developmental step last year, introducing a D-League team into the mix. The Raptors 905 finished 23-27 last season.

And now this year, the 905 are on top of the world.

Behind monster performances from Bruno Caboclo and Fred VanVleet, the 905 won their first ever NBA D-League Championship, blowing out the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, 122-96. Caboclo led all scorers with 31 points, 11 rebounds, and a game high four blocks while VanVleet had 28 points and 14 assists.

4,824 people attended the final game of the championship at the Hershey Centre as the 905 fans left thrilled after a dominant performance from their team.

In a year of firsts for the 905, it was also their first ever appearance in the playoffs and in the finals. The win capped off an historic year, in which the 905 led the league with a 39-11 record in the regular season.

905 head coach Jerry Stackhouse, who was named Coach of the Year, was proud of how far his team had come within a year.

“It’s a great feeling,” Stackhouse said. “I’m happy for these guys; they really worked their butts off (for this).”

Stackhouse has previously experienced success before with the Raptors organization, as he was an assistant coach in their run to the ECF last season.

When asked if he considers himself a good luck charm, Stackhouse said, “I might take some credit for some of that (eventually) but right now I’m a piece of the puzzle.”

VanVleet, who was designated on assignment from the Raptors, said these accomplishments speak volumes about the organization.

“It’s a testament to the organization, from top to bottom, the way the management is run,” VanVleet said.

NBA D-League Finals MVP Pascal Siakam

Pascal Siakam was named Finals MVP as he finished the series averaging 23.0 ppg and 9.0 rpg on 54.9 per cent shooting. He finished Game 3 with 17 points.

“It feels great,” Siakam said post-game. “It shows that hard work pays off.”

Siakam and VanVleet both spoke highly of their head coach.

“A lot of people have respect for him,” Siakam said, referring to Stackhouse’s playing career. “He knows what it takes to get to that level.”

“He (Coach) came in with a plan and a culture,” VanVleet said. “Everybody trusted what he wanted to do and it paid off.”

Yanick Moreira finished with a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds while John Jordan provided the 905 with a spark off the bench with 12 points and six assists.

The 905 were locked in on both ends throughout this game in a wire-to-wire win. The team shot a scorching 58.8 per cent from the field and 50 per cent from behind the arc (12-24). The 905 also limited the Vipers, who led the D-League in the regular season with 120.1 points per game, to just 96 points overall on 42.9 per cent shooting from the field.

The swarming defense from the 905 frustrated both Darius Morris and Kyle Wiltjer from the Vipers. Morris had 16 points on 19 shots, with many of those points coming in garbage time. Wiltjer, meanwhile, was limited to only seven points on 3-14 shooting from the field.

Troy Williams (23 points) and Jarvis Threatt (21 points) led the scoring for Rio Grande in the loss.

Canadian Brady Heslip is all smiles

The 905 thoroughly outplayed the Vipers on points in the paint (64-50), rebounding (45-30), assists (29-16), and blocked shots (10-4). It was more than enough to overcome the 20 turnovers they had.

The 905 came out guns blazing as they scored the first eight points of the game. Eventually, they took their largest lead of the game at 12 (17-5). Caboclo started off hot, hitting his first four shots in that spurt.

A notable highlight in the quarter came when Siakam threw a lob to a cutting Caboclo for the thunderous jam that brought the 905 crowd to its feet.

Wiltjer then scored five straight points as the Vipers cut the lead to five (21-16). But consecutive triples from Jordan and Caboclo had the 905 extending their lead to nine, 27-18, after one quarter. Caboclo had 14 after the first quarter.

In the second quarter, the bench unit hit a rut offensively for the 905, with consecutive shot clock violations. However, VanVleet came in and calmed the 905 down, scoring 12 points in the quarter. He had 16 at the half.

Rio Grande would not go away, eventually tying the game at 48 after a three pointer from Williams. But a 9-1 run from the 905, mainly on pick and rolls, had them up 57-49 at the half.

The highlight of the night came when Jordan, the D-League Slam Dunk Champion, caught a lob in transition from VanVleet. The 905 survived a scare when Siakam rolled his ankle but he stayed in the game.

Raptors 905 guard John Jordan

The third quarter was when the game got out of hand for the Vipers as the 905, once again, scored the first eight points to start the half, extending their lead to 16 (65-49) forcing a quick timeout from Rio Grande Valley.

Caboclo then continued his amazing play from the first half. In an incredible sequence, he hit a three, blocked Morris on the other end, dunked in transition, before hitting yet another triple on the next offensive possession.

“He (Bruno) was amazing,” VanVleet said in awe. “That’s what people envisioned of him and performances like tonight are why people are still high on him.”

“Me and my wife were having lunch and I’m like, ‘Bruno’s going to have a good game today,’” Stackhouse joked. “He had pep in his step at shoot around.”

VanVleet picked apart the defense with his passing, with four assists in the quarter alone. The Vipers had four assists as a team in the quarter.

Since a 48-48 tie late in the first half, the 905 went on a 17-1 run. They forced Rio Grande into six turnovers in the quarter and outscored them, 33-20, to go up 90-69 heading into the final frame.

In the final quarter, both coaches emptied their benches with the game no longer in doubt.

The ending of the game came with fireworks, as the Vipers did not take it kindly as Negus Webster-Chan shot a triple and Jordan went for a dunk, both plays with the clock winding down. Jordan was fouled hard and players from both teams had to be separated.

Eventually, Joshua Smith (Rio Grande), Chinanu Onuaku (Rio Grande), and VanVleet (905) were ejected from the game.

“We were caught in the moment and obviously their players were kind of frustrated,” Jordan said. “It’s no big deal.”

The fans enjoyed every minute of the game

In a touching moment, Stackhouse credited the championship to Nathan Smith, although he could not attend the game. Smith suffers from cystic fibrosis.

“I want to dedicate this championship to his whole family,” Stackhouse said. “We take so much for granted. Those people are our family.”

Before leaving, Stackhouse repeated his mantra, which has been said all season long.

“Hug your brothers.”

Congratulations to the 905 on a historic run to the D-League Championship.

As a side note: The city of Toronto had another reason to celebrate as the Raptors won 92-89 in Game 6 of their first round matchup against the Milwaukee Bucks. It was the first time in franchise history that the Raptors won a series in which it did not take the maximum number of games.

Written By Kajan Thiruthanikasalam

Photos by Rob Ong

Edited by Drew Ebanks

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Canada Basketball puts on 3rd Annual NCCP Super Clinic May 19th-21st, 2017

0

The Super Clinic will run May 19-21, 2017 at Ryerson University and the University of Toronto with presentations by international basketball experts and coaches. Come and enjoy this one-of-a-kind weekend with a multitude of unique events that you will not want to miss! Register here today.

The Super Clinic offers coaches the opportunity to choose from:

–          All of the basketball NCCP courses;

–          Professional development streams for youth and high performance coaches;

–          NCCP Competition-Development multi-sport courses; and

–          Wheelchair Basketball Canada’s Competition-Introduction and Competition-

Introduction Advanced NCCP course

Presenters at this year’s Super Clinic include: 

–          Bev Smith – Head Coach 2000 Women’s National Team; Assist Coach 2016 Women’s National Team

–          Nadine Crowley – FIBA Commissioner and Supervisor of Officials

–          Matteo Feriani – Head Coach, Senior Men’s Wheelchair Basketball Team

–          Mike Frogly – Head Coach and Director, National Academy Wheelchair Basketball Canada

–          Jodi Gram – Head Coach, 2017 U17 Women’s National Team

–          Olga Hrycak – 2017 Canada Basketball Hall of Fame Inductee

–          Patrick Hunt – Chair FIBA Technical Commission, President of the World Associations of Coaches

–          Troy Justice – NBA Senior Director, Basketball Operations International

–          Mike Mackay – Performance Manager, Women’s High Performance

–          Michael Meeks – Men’s High Performance, Youth Player Development

–          Roy Rana – Head Coach, 2017 U19 Men’s National Team

–          Jay Triano – Head Coach, Senior Men’s Basketball Team

–          Chantal Vallée – Targeted Coaching Pool, Canada Basketball Women’s High Performance

Courtesy Canada Basketball/Dawn Smyth

Drew Ebanks

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Late fourth quarter run leads 905 to the finish line over Vipers

0

MISSISSAUGA – Following a disappointing defensive effort against Rio Grande Valley on Sunday that saw the Raptors 905 concede 50.6 per cent shooting from the floor and cough up 18 turnovers, the home team was able to bounce back and take Game 2 of the best-of-three matchup against the Vipers, coming away with the 95-85 win on Tuesday and evening up the series at one apiece.

EJ Singler’s timely long ball late in the fourth quarter and a thunderous reverse jam by Bruno Caboclo that followed would help seal the victory for the 905 and inch the club one step closer to the franchise’s first-ever championship.

Pascal Siakam poured in a game-high 32 points to go along with 10 rebounds and five steals in 44 minutes of action, while Fred VanVleet chipped in with an all-around performance, recording 16 points, seven rebounds and nine assists. Singler finished with 15 points (3-for-6 from deep).

Brady Heslip didn’t lead his team in scoring, something he’s often done over the course of the season, but he knocked down three key triples on the way to his 11-point night.

The 905 have had a relatively tranquil journey to the NBA D-League finals in just its second season, but following an unusual 119-106 loss to the Vipers in Game 1, it was important for head coach Jerry Stackhouse to smoothen out the rough edges before Tuesday’s matchup, particularly against a high-octane offence like Rio’s.

“It’s a tough team, man, they’re a tough team to play,” said Stackhouse of the Vipers, who are making their fourth finals appearance in eight years. “They do a lot of things to put you in a bind defensively, but I thought for the most part we continued to fight, continued to work and grind the game.”

During the regular season, the 905 led the NBA D-League in opponent’s points-per game at 99.6, the only team in the league to hold opponents below 100 points. And they held true to their guard-first identity in Game 2, limiting the Vipers to 41.5 per cent shooting and capitalizing on 20 Rio Grande Valley miscues with 27 points.

“Defensively we were good,” he said. “You look down at the stat sheet and (you see that) we held this team to 41 per cent shooting and 85 points. This is a team that averages somewhere close to 120. They put up big numbers in this league, so to put that type of number on them is big.”

An example of that defence occurred midway through the opening frame when Bruno Caboclo, a defensive stalwart as of late, utilized his 7-foot-6 wingspan to send away Chinanu Onuako’s line drive to the basket (one of four blocks), igniting roars from the 3,359 in attendance at the Hershey Centre.

On the offensive end, the 905 didn’t shoot particularly well from the floor, just 43.8 per cent to be exact, but there were several instances where scoring came seamlessly, specifically in the first half when VanVleet and Siakam made good on a series of transition plays, leading to a 17-5 fast-break point differential. The pair combined for 29 points and consistently invigorated the arena with multiple high-energy plays throughout the game. VanVleet often spearheaded transition plays against the back-pedaling Rio defence before either bursting to the hoop for a semi-contested lay up or finding Siakam for an easy flush.

“(VanVleet brings) toughness and (the ability to) defend, “said Siakam, who had a plus-minus of 15 in the win.

“He’s a playmaker so it helps me out there on the floor having a guy that can find shooters, guys like Brady, E.J., find guys that can roll to the basket like myself,” he said. “It definitely helps to have a guy like him that can control the tempo.”

The 6-foot-9 Siakam was impressive from start to finish, notching 20 first-half points and causing several mismatches in the open court. While his jump shooting continues to be a work in progress — he’s already made strides from the 10-15-foot range this season and is working to eventually extend his scope to the three-point line—Siakam’s eternal cauldron of energy makes guarding him a laborious task, and it’s something he continues to use to his advantage each game.

“I’m going to run everyday, I’m going to run every possession. If that’s what I’m going to get every possession I’m going to take it,” he said.

The big man logged 44 meaningful minutes in Game 2 and had an impressive stat line to show for it. Having the opportunity to play in the D-League has certainly benefited Siakam, especially when minutes on the big stage come sparingly.

“It helps me a lot, just getting reps,” he said. “(I) don’t play a lot with the (Toronto) Raptors and whenever you come down here and you can get like 40-something minutes. It definitely helps.”

The 905 persistently carved up the Vipers inside throughout the game, winning the points-in-the-paint battle 50-38 and making a conscious effort to play inside-out. Rio, conversely, relied heavily on the three-point line to spur their offence, shooting just 10-for-37 on the night from deep, but shrewdly audibled once their three-point scoring ran dry.

The Vipers made a late rally to tie things up at the 4:38 mark of the fourth quarter after a Darius Morris three pointer, but the 905 quickly responded with a pair of baskets of their own from Singler and Caboclo, helping trigger a game-ending 12-3 run to put away Rio.

Former Gonzaga Bulldogs’ standout Kyle Wiltjer led the Vipers in the scoring column, tallying 25 points and 12 rebounds while connecting on five three pointers in just over 40 minutes. Although Wiltjer struggles defensively and is certainly not one of the more athletic players around, his offensive prowess is hard to ignore.

“Wiltjer was big time tonight, he (doesn’t have) the quickest of feet but he gets to his spots and whenever he does he’s a big-time shooter,” said Stackhouse. “I’d say Brady’s the best shooter in the world, (but Wiltjer’s) got to be in the top five too. I think he’s going to have an opportunity to really showcase who he is very soon.”

The 905 will square off against the Vipers Thursday evening at the Hershey Centre for Game 3 to determine the 2016-17 NBA D-League Champions.

Notes: Toronto Raptors players DeMar DeRozan, PJ Tucker, Jakob Poeltl, and Bebe were in attendance for Game two of the finals… Negus Webster-Chan was available to play for the first time in the playoffs since experiencing concussions-like symptoms…905 shot 30.8 per cent from three (8-for-26)…Vipers’ point guard Isaiah Taylor left three minutes into the game because of an apparent ankle injury and didn’t return, his status for Game three is unknown.

Bruno Caboclo

Written by Jas Grewal

Photos by Rob Ong

Edited by Drew Ebanks

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

CYBL and Under Armour Announce All-Canadian Rising Stars Youth Basketball Camp

0

(Toronto, ON) April 5, 2017 – Canadian Youth Basketball League will host the All-Canadian Rising Stars Basketball Camp powered by Under Armour from August 9 to 13, 2017 at Nipissing University. The entertainment-filled, overnight camp is designed to support male and female student-athletes ages 9 to 16 in the areas of sportsmanship, character education and skill development.

Wayne Bridge, the designated Camp Director and Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach at Ryerson University, has organized a fun and engaging program suitable to athletes of all skill levels. With over 30 hours of on-court instruction, plus extra-curricular activities like video game tournaments, Basketball Movie Night, and other surprises, this promises to be an exclusive experience for all ballers in attendance.

Wayne Bridge

This is the first year that the camp is powered by Under Armour and all athletes will receive Under Armour apparel and footwear.

“Outfitting these talented young athletes in Under Armour from head-to-toe will help them feel like the pros when they step onto the court. And when you feel good, you play even better,” says Shana Ferguson, Director of Marketing, Under Armour Canada.

The CYBL’s efforts have also attracted the support of past and present professional athletes, including retired WNBA Champion and 2x WNBA All-Star, Tammy Sutton-Brown  (a product of Markham, Ontario). Sutton-Brown will be at the camp this summer.

Tammy Sutton-Brown

“I’m excited to be joining CYBL for their Rising Stars camp as the Director of Girls Basketball,” said Sutton-Brown. “One of the main lessons I have taken away from my 12 years as a professional athlete is – when you master the fundamentals you always give yourself a chance at greatness. CYBL’s Rising Stars camp is a one of a kind opportunity for kids to develop the fundamentals, compete and take their game to another level.”

To learn more information regarding CYBL Rising Stars Basketball Camp fees and registration, please visit the CYBL website at http://www.cybl.ca/ or contact Wayne Bridge at camps@cybl.ca or (647) 381-2971.

About the CYBL:

The CYBL, whose mission is to spread their passion for the game of basketball throughout Canada, has rapidly grown from 46 teams to over 260 teams since its establishment in 2013. Through the partnership with Under Armour, the league continues to reinforce its commitment to being a world-class amateur basketball organization.

About Under Armour, Inc.

Under Armour, a leader in the performance footwear, apparel and equipment market has revolutionized how athletes across the world dress. Designed to make all athletes better, the brand’s innovative products are sold worldwide to athletes at all levels. The Under Armour Connected Fitness™ platform powers the world’s largest digital health and fitness community through a suite of applications: UA Record, MapMyFitness, Endomondo and MyFitnessPal. The Under Armour global headquarters is in Baltimore, Maryland. For further information, please visit the Company’s website at www.uabiz.com.

For further information contact:

Martin-Abdul Davis

CYBL

mabdul.davis@gmail.com

Ashleigh Mair

Paradigm Public Relations

amair@paradigmpr.ca

Courtesy CYBL

Drew Ebanks

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Aspire for Higher Basketball Camp set for July and August

0

Aspire for Higher Basketball Camp allows young athletes to develop basketball skills in preparation for playing basketball at the next level. Your child will be trained by talented university and college athletes from across the country!

Whether your athlete is a beginner or an advanced player, Aspire For Higher has a program for you! This camp will challenge and encourage your athlete to improve their basketball skills in a fun learning environment.
This summer we are celebrating out 5th year running with 5 locations across the city of Brampton for youth ages 5 – 14. Become apart of the A4H Family this summer.
Instagram: a4hbasketball
Courtesy Aspire For Higher Basketball
Drew Ebanks
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Raptors 905 make history as they reach their first NBA D-League Finals

0

Mississauga, Ont. — First ever playoff appearance. First ever playoff win. First ever playoff series win.

And now for the Raptors 905, their very first National Basketball Association Development League Finals appearance.

The 905 punched their ticket into the NBA D-League Finals with a 103-88 victory at the Hershey Centre over the Maine Red Claws, winning the series 2-0.

A 21-2 run to end the second quarter proved to be the deciding factor for the 905. It was also the first time that the home team won a game in the head-to-head matchup between the two teams this season.

Despite shooting 40 per cent (14-35) from beyond the arc, the biggest differences in the game were in the paint as the 905 outscored the Red Claws, 42-28.

The 905 also outrebounded the Red Claws, 48-38, and outscored Maine, 15-2, in second chance points.

Despite losing star players Axel Toupane (New Orleans) and Edy Tavares (Cleveland) to NBA call-ups, the 905 did not miss a beat.

Raptors 905 head coach Jerry Stackhouse was awarded the 2016-17 NBA D-League Coach of the Year before the game. But he made sure to give credit to the people behind the scenes.

“It’s not just what happens in practice with this group,” Stackhouse said. “Our player development and our coaches, they’re all a part of what we do. I got real grinders.”

The coach of the year singled out his assistant coaches, saying, “Nathaniel Mitchell, David Gale, Nicki Gross, John (Corbacio), Donnie (Tyndall). They come in every morning at eight o’clock, up for a large part of the season, and have player development before we even have practice.”

Six players scored in double figures for the 905. Brady Heslip led the 905 with 21 points on six made threes. E.J. Singler had 18 points and a team high five assists while Bruno Caboclo scored 16 and John Jordan chipped in with 12. Singler also finished with a game high +33 when he was on the floor.

Pascal Siakam (15 points, 10 rebounds) and Yanick Moreira (16 points, 12 rebounds) each had a double-double. Siakam also had a game-high three steals in the victory.

Maine point guard Demetrius Jackson had 21 points in the loss.

When asked if his scoring outburst reminded him of his days at Baylor, Heslip laughed, saying, “These are different days, man.”

The 905 bench came up huge once again, outscoring Maine’s bench, 42-22.

Raptors 905 team photo with NBA D-League President Malcolm Turner

Determined to get off to a better start after a brutal Game 1 showing, the Red Claws scored the first five points of the game. But the 905 went on an 18-4 run to take a nine-point lead (18-9). After a Red Claws basket, the 905 scored the last five points of the quarter to take a 23-11 lead after one.

The 905 forced the Red Claws into just 23.5 per cent shooting from the field and into five turnovers.

In the second, the Red Claws chipped away at the 905 lead, cutting the lead to one at 35-34. A notable highlight came from Jackson, who soared over Siakam for the poster.

However, this was when the game turned around, in a big way. The 905 closed out the half on a scintillating 21-2 run, led by Heslip.

Heslip had 15 in the quarter on five made threes, including four straight triples to end the half.

“Once I saw one go down, I was looking for it and usually, the ball finds energy,” Heslip said. “(My) teammates did a really great job finding me when I was open and I was able to get a few shots off.”

Singler and Caboclo were the other Raptors in double figure scoring with 11 and 10, respectively, at halftime.

The third quarter saw Maine cut six points off of the 905 lead to 14. Jackson had seven points in the quarter but Singler scored five in the third to make sure Maine stayed at arm’s length.

The final quarter saw both teams play even to each other as Moreira had eight points and five rebounds in the frame alone. Both teams then emptied their benches to close out the game.

Maine forward Abdel Nader was held to just 15 points on just 30 per cent (6-20) from the field while forward Jalen Jones was limited to just 11 points.

Stackhouse credited the wings for making Nader uncomfortable offensively.

“Bruno (Caboclo), Antwaine Wiggins, CJ Leslie, Pascal Siakam,” Stackhouse said, listing the defenders that shut down Nader. “That was the game plan, for them to match up and make him work for all of his baskets.”

Caboclo, who was aggressive on both ends of the floor, said that he was encouraged by Stackhouse to play more freely.

“Stack told me to get more into the ball and pressure more of the ball,” Caboclo said.

Although the win was historic for the 905, Caboclo is not satisfied with just a finals appearance.

“Nothing is done yet,” Caboclo said. “We want the championship.”

Game Attendance: 1,967

NBA D-League Coach of the Year Jerry Stackhouse

After the Rio Grande Valley Vipers won Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals against the Oklahoma City Blue as well on Wednesday night, the 905 will now play the Vipers to determine the NBA D-League champion.

The Vipers feature former Gonzaga Bulldog Kyle WIltjer, who has suited up for Canada internationally.

NBA D-League Finals:

Game 1 will be on Sunday April 23rd at 8pm at the State Farm Arena at Hidalgo, Texas.

Full Finals Schedule:

GM 1 (Away)- Apr 23, 8pm

GM 2 (Home)- Apr 25, 7pm

GM 3 (Home)- Apr 27, 7pm *(If Necessary)

Written by: Kajan Thiruthanikasalam

Photos by Rob Ong

Edited by Drew Ebanks

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Aspire for Higher Basketball Camp set for July and August

0

Aspire for Higher Basketball Camp allows young athletes to develop basketball skills in preparation for playing basketball at the next level. Your child will be trained by talented university and college athletes from across the country!

Whether your athlete is a beginner or an advanced player, Aspire For Higher has a program for you! This camp will challenge and encourage your athlete to improve their basketball skills in a fun learning environment.
This summer we are celebrating out 5th year running with 5 locations across the city of Brampton for youth ages 5 – 14. Become apart of the A4H Family this summer.
Instagram: a4hbasketball
Courtesy Aspire For Higher Basketball
Drew Ebanks
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Luguentz Dort bullying the opposition & making his presence felt

0

 

The BioSteel All-Canadian game is more than just a spectacle highlighting the nation’s top prospects, it’s also an opportunity for players to generate some buzz on an international level.

Montreal, QC., native Luguentz Dort did just that at the third-annual All-Canadian Game last week, finishing the night with 30 points and notching the MVP award in front of a sold out crowd at the Goldring Centre in Toronto.

Set to graduate in 2018, Dort is already piquing the interest of many mid-to-high major NCAA colleges, and based on the list of schools he’s received word from, there seems to be a high demand for the soon-to-be 18-year old.

“I didn’t cut my list yet but I have Florida, Baylor, Louisville, Oregon, Arizona State, UNLV and Missouri,” said Dort, who played for the World Select Team earlier this month at the Nike Hoop Summit in Portland, Oregon. “Probably this summer I’ll visit a school, just try to match with a good coach, great teammates and find a good position for me to play in college.”

According to Draft Express’s Mike Schmitz, Dort has a 6’8.5” wingspan and possesses the tools to become a lockdown defender at the next level. On offence, he’s an aggressive rim attacker with elite driving ability and doesn’t shy away from contact.

Although Dort likens his playing style to Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook — just based off the natural elements of his game, namely the speed, strength and athleticism he possesses—the Conrad Academy (Orlando, FL) product understands that there are areas of his game that require improvement, specifically his ball-handling and shooting ability, the latter of which he’s worked on mightily over the past year.

“A lot,” he said in response to how much work he’s put in to develop his jump shot. “To be honest the whole year…down in Florida that’s what I did the whole time.”

Dort doesn’t have the tightest handle or the sharpest crossover, but he does a good job of reading defences and piloting the floor, using his size as a shield against pesky defenders. Much like Westbrook, he relies on strength and speed to blow past the opposition, employing an elite first step to create separation before bursting to the rim for a layup or dunk. He already has the explosiveness to get to the rim whenever he chooses to, but adding creativity on the bounce will only make it more difficult to guard him.

With another year to go at Conrad Academy, he has an ample amount of time to fill any holes.

Written by Jas Grewal

Photos by Reel Motion Imaging

Edited by Drew Ebanks

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Craig Beaucamp Named Head Coach of Boys’ U16 National Team

0

TORONTO, ON (April 14, 2017) – Canada Basketball is pleased to announce the hiring of Craig Beaucamp as Head Coach of the boys’ U16 National Team.

“We are excited to have Craig at the helm of our U16 team,” said Michael Meeks, Manager, Youth Player Development, who will join Beaucamp as an Assistant Coach. “His commitment to our program and technical expertise will help with the development of our age-group athletes.”

Beaucamp has prior experience with Canada Basketball, serving as an assistant coach with the U18 Men’s National Team in 2006, 2007, and 2016 and at the 2011 Pan-Am Games in Mexico. He was also a guest coach with the Senior Men’s National Team from 2013-2016.

“I’m looking forward to working with some of Canada’s best young talent,” said Beaucamp. “This is the first opportunity for many of these players to play on the international stage. Anytime you have the chance to represent Canada, it’s both an honour and a privilege.”

The Burnaby, B.C. native has spent the past 14 years as Head Coach of the University of Victoria men’s basketball team, entering the 2016-2017 season with a conference record of 211-88. A five-time Canada West Coach of the Year, he has led the Vikes to two Canada West Championships (2005-2006 & 2014-2015) and three straight appearances in the USports Final 8 from 2013-2015. He was also a finalist for the Stuart W. Aberdeen Memorial Trophy (USports Coach of the Year) in 2012-2013.

In addition, Beaucamp is a Level Four graduate of the National Coaching Certification Program.

Beaucamp will be present at this weekend’s U16 Open Identification session in Toronto and will lead the team to the FIBA U16 Championships of the Americas June 14-18 in Argentina.

Canada’s youth men are currently ranked 3rd in the world and 2nd in the Americas.

Courtesy Canada Basketball

Photos Courtesy of UVic’s website (Gordon Lee) & Canada Basketball

Drew Ebanks

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Raptors 905 to open second round on Sunday April 16th, 2017

0

The NBA Development League announced Wednesday the dates for the Eastern Conference Finals of the 2017 NBA D-League Playoffs. Raptors 905 face the Maine Red Claws in the second round.
Raptors 905 will begin the Conference Finals on the road Sunday, April 16 at 7 p.m. The series will shift to Hershey Centre for Games Two and Three on Wednesday, April 19 at 7 p.m. and Thursday, April 20 at 7 p.m.

Raptors 905 defeated the Canton Charge in the opening round of the playoffs.

Courtesy Raptors 905

Drew Ebanks

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

MOST POPULAR

HOT NEWS

X