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BasketballBuzz NBL Canada Power Rankings – Nov 28, 2011



Pretty quiet week for the National Basketball League of Canada, with only five games on the schedule the association took the time to finally announce their newest commish.

John Kennedy, a Windsor-born and Los Angeles based sports executive takes the daunting task of growing the profile of the NBLC. Additionally, we got our first Head coach resignation as we roll yet another edition of the BasketballBuzz NBL Canada Power Rankings.

#1 London Lightning – (7-2) (LW: 1)
Gabe Freeman scored a season high 34 points and yanked down 15 rebounds in the lone game last week.

Previous:Moncton Miracles, W 122-100
Upcoming Games: @Summerside Storm, @Moncton Miracles

#2 Summerside Storm – (5-3) (LW: 4)
The Storm picked up a road win over the Oshawa Power and move-up on the rankings.

Previous: @Oshawa Power W, 119-97
Upcoming Games: @Saint John Mill Rats, Quebec Kebs, London Lightning

#3 Quebec Kebs – (5-4) (LW: 3)
The Kebs retain their spot after a week off, they hit the road for their next five games. Ricky Volcy (Montreal, QC) has been solid as of lately reaching double figures scoring in the last two contests and is averaging 9 points, five rebounds and two assists.

Upcoming Games: @Oshawa Power, @Summerside Storm, @Moncton Miracles

#4 Halifax Rainmen – (3-3) (LW: 3)
Lost two key players (Taliek Brown, Eddie Robinson) to early injuries and dropped a hard-fought first-ever regular season meeting against the Oshawa Power. Canadian guard Joey Haywood (Vancouver, BC) had another great game with 20 points and four assists in a team-high 32 minutes.

Must Read:  NBL Canada owners unify, increase Canadian limit to four players at Annual General Meeting

Previous: @Oshawa Power L, 111-115
Upcoming Games: @Saint John Mill Rats, Moncton Miracles

#5 Saint John Mill Rats (4-4) (LW: 5)
The Millrats were idle last week and are looking to take advantage of a four-game home stand.

Previous: Idle
Upcoming Games: Summerside Storm, Oshawa Power, Halifax Rainmen

#6 Oshawa Power – (4-5) (LW: 6)
Oshawa used a 63-point second-half to snapped a two-game losing streak. Akeem Wright’s 33-point and 10 rebound clutch performance was a treat to watch.

Previous:Summerside Storm L, 97-119,  Halifax Rainmen W, 115-111
Upcoming Games: Quebec Kebs, @St. John’s Millrats

#7 Moncton Miracles (0-7) (LW: 7)
Head Coach Norris Bell had enough and decided to resign citing personal reasons. In comes Mike Evans, a former assistant with the Denver Nuggets. Evans has experience with the Raptors and coached the Rainmen back in their PBL days.

Previous: @London Lightning L, 100-122
Upcoming Games: Quebec Kebs, London Lightning, @Halifax Rainmen



River Lions Springer-Williams Jr. buries 10-of-12 triples, one shy of NBL Canada record



Niagara River Lions guard Clinton Springer-Williams Jr. buried a career-best 10-of 12 triples on his  way to a 38-point night in a 108-93 win over the Windsor Express. Springer-Williams Jr. impressive performance came-up just short of Omar’ Strong’s NBL Canada record eleven three-pointers.

Springer-Williams Jr. shot 10-of-15 from the field, including for 4-of-5 from the charity stripe, he’s averaging 10.7 points per game and a scorching hot 46% from downtown for the up-start River Lions.

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Niagara River Lions Clinton Springer-Williams Nails Step-Back Home-Opener Game-Winner



Welcome to the National Basketball League of Canada (NBLC).

The Niagara River Lions playing in the franchise’s first-ever home opener were treated to a buzzer beating shot from familiar player.

Former Brock Badgers and 2010 CIS Men’s Basketball Rookie of the Year drilled home a beautiful step-back three-pointer as the upstart Niagara River Lions coached by Ken Murray (Former Brock Badgers Head oach) defeated the London Lightning 106-104 in dramatic fashion in front of 2800 plus fan at Meridian Centre. in St. Catherines, Ontario. Clinton Springer-Williams finished the night with 15 points and eight rebounds as Niagara improved to 1-1 in their inaugural season.


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Toronto 3D Taking Flight



Basketball in Canada has grown tremendously over the last few years. With its popularity being at an all-time high it is fair to say that basketball in Canada has reached it’s prime. The Toronto Raptors could certainly take credit for the Nations view on basketball with it’s “We The North” campaign. This slogan has taken Canadians by storm. So much that the NBA has set a new D-League team in the GTA area, a Raptors affiliation called ‘Toronto 905’. The Raptors have taken advantage of the ‘buzz’ they have going on by adding two Toronto natives, a former NBA champion Cory Joseph and Anthony Bennett the first Canadian to be picked first overall in an NBA draft. This has got people believing that Tristan Thompson & Andrew Wiggins, both Toronto natives, will eventually join the Raptors as well.

This new regime in Canadian basketball translated to Canada coming out on fire at the  2015 FIBA Americas but unfortunately fell short of qualifying for the 2016 Olympics in Brazil as they finished with the bronze medal. All these accomplishments and recognition has paved the way for Canadian basketball players to be driven and motivated more than ever. Having the opportunity to go to open try-outs for the 905’s D-League team, also the National Basketball League of Canada (NBLC) who will be going into their 5th season. For years Canadian basketball players felt that most leagues favorite Americans due to their experiences. Those who lacked the funds of going to America had slim chances of making any professional basketball league. But it seems that all of that has changed. Luckily for Canadians the NBL Canada regulates a rule which every roster should have a minimum of 4 Canadian players even though most teams have actually carried up to 7. This rule has helped many talented Canadian players earn spots on rosters. Owners and managers continue on making NBL Canada a recognized league not only around the world, but also are taking greater strides by attempting to ‘canadianize’ the league from the ownership level down to the players. One team who has some NBL Canada affiliation that stood out the most the past year as an emerging and unique Canadian force in basketball was the Toronto 3D team.

Toronto 3D is a premier basketball club in Toronto that has gained quite the name for themselves since their inception only a year and a half ago. With all the professional teams in Toronto, 3D still managed to gain some respect. Four core athletes who play on the Toronto 3D have even been invited to private Raptor’s workouts. 3D creates a balanced program that allows Canadian basketball players to develop their talents, play semi-professional basketball and gain exposure all while transitioning into the real ‘work’ world after their college/university or pro-careers. Anything that becomes after that is just a bonus: such as players landing professional basketball contracts. For a program that has launched less than two years ago, it has accomplished a lot. They represented Canada in China in May in a tournament hosted by Beijing’s ATLAS Sports and the Chinese Basketball association where they played representatives of the NBA D-League’s IOWA Energy, Cairns Taipans the Australians NBL 1st place team and the Chinese National B team. Toronto 3D has also played against teams from the IBA, CBA, participated in the Toronto’s Pro-Am games, and went undefeated with a 13-0 record in the North Border Basketball League of 2014. The action did not stop there this summer for 3D as they even had 4 players representing them during a Pan-am game scrimmage against Brazil’s National Basketball team playing alongside Toronto Raptor’s James Johnson.

Must Read:  BasketballBuzz NBL Canada Power Rankings - Dec 5, 2011

This program is starting to gain recognition and is up and coming as one of the most emerging basketball programs in Canada. Its success has landed a handful of player’s professional basketball contracts. Point guard Greg Carter out of Ottawa and a former 3X CIS Defensive player of the year received a contract with the NBL Canada Niagara River Lions. Toronto Guard Tramar Sutherland out of Toronto who played Div.1 for Little Rock Arkansas also earned himself a contract with Niagara River Lions. Denny McDonald out of Mississauga and a former Sheridan college & Trinity Western University player received a professional contract with NBL Canada’s Saint John Millrats. Shamar Coombs out of Toronto received a professional contract with the Caldas De Manizales a professional basketball club in Colombia. Overall the Toronto 3D has taken advantage of the uprising basketball opportunities in Canada and ran with it. To close the year they will have a mini tour in the United States where they will be playing against NCAA schools and semi-pro teams. With the determining goal of creating disciplined motivation, the 3D aims to help its dedicated players achieve their dreams. One things for sure is that the Toronto 3D’s future is looking bright!

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