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2013-14 Rookie class


This season has one of the largest rookie classes the NBL has seen in some time, every team in the league has at least 1 rookie!

We break down each rookie and their chances at taking out the Rookie of the year award.

Scott Kenny [Townsville]

Scott can flat out shoot and he isn’t scared to put up any open shot he gets. Before playing with the Tigers he was a gun in the SEABL averaging over 21 ppg last season. He made 101 three-pointers in 28 games.. So he can score. His defense? Well, we’re yet to see any of that.

Kenny signed as the 11th man for a Crocs team that will be without Peter Crawford for at least the 1st round and maybe even longer. So Kenny could see some solid minutes early in the season, a great chance to prove himself.

ROTY chances: Low – Medium

Shaun Bruce [Cairns]

Bruce signed with the Taipans last season as a development player, he impressed his team mates and coaching staff so much he was rewarded with a FT roster position this season.

Last season he played behind the now retired Kerry Williams, this season he will play the back up role to Jamar Wilson. So expect him to see a decent number of minutes throughout the season, however his role doesn’t require him to put up a lot of points so it’s unlikely he will win ROTY. But don’t be fooled.. Bruce can play!

ROTY chances: Low

Mitchell Young [Cairns]

The Taipans are going for an All-Australian front court that will heavily feature Young coming off the bench with Matt Burtson. He’s a great signing for the already young Cairns Taipans who now boost a young core of Young, Steindl, Bruce, Weigh and last season’s ROTY Cam Gliddon.

Young had a solid Blitz tournament averaging 9 ppg and 5.3 rpg, shooting the ball at over 51% from the field. Even though he will be backing up one of the league’s best big man in Cam Tragardh expect him to see a lot of court time which will likely result in another Taipans player taking out the ROTY award.

ROTY chances: High

Kyle Armour [Sydney]

Armour was a development player for the Perth Wildcats last season, getting on the court just twice. Once against Townsville and the other against Cairns. However he impressed the Kings so much during Development camp that they decided to sign him as a replacement until Ben Madgen returns from injury.

Armour won’t see many minutes on the court for the Kings this season. Expect a max of 5min a game – if that. The kid can play though and is very fast, will that translate to an NBL career? That remains to be seen.

ROTY chances: Nil

Brendan Teys [Adelaide]

Despite being a rookie this season, Teys has actually played for 3 NBL teams (including Adelaide) since he entered the league in 2009-10.

Teys played as a development player for the Gold Coast Blaze in 2010, 2011 and 2012. After the Blaze folded Teys moved up north and sat on the bench for the Townsville Crocs for all of but 2 games last season.

This season he decided to follow his former coach Joey Wright to South Australia and was rewarded with his first FT NBL position as a back up to Gary Ervin & Jason Cadee.

Even though Teys was not shy during the Blitz tournament, it’s unlikely he’ll make a run at ROTY.

ROTY chances: Low 

Owen Odigie [Melbourne]

Odigie is another former Development player come good and as a result been award his first FT NBL contract.

The often injured Odigie replaces Bennie Lewis Jr who was not re-signed by the Tigers and has since been left out of the league. Owen has played/trained with the Tigers since 2011-12 however has seen very little to no court time as a development player. However the Tigers are high on this kid and believe he will be a great NBL player one day.

It’s unlikely we’ll see Odigie make a huge jump this season. Increased court time? Sure. Chris Goulding is out until mid-November. But will we see him sore to ROTY contention? Doubtful.

ROTY chances: Low

Reuben Te Rangi [NZ]

Te Rangi is one of the biggest question marks of the 2013-14 NBL rookie class as very few fans have actually seen this kid play. The Breakers however seem to think he will be a star.

During the Blitz tournament he didn’t seem to stand out at all. He averaged just 3 ppg on 22% FG. He also seemed to get into a lot of foul trouble, but hey! Who didn’t?

ROTY chances: Unknown 

Tom Jervis [Perth]

Jervis was one of the lowest key signings of the NBL this season but could be a great role player for the Wildcats as Matt Knight sits out with injury early in the season.

During the Blitz Jervis provided a spark off the bench for the ‘Cats, averaging 7.6 ppg, 5.3 rpg and 1.3 bpg. His length will come in handy for Perth and is looking like an upgrade on the 2012-13 back up big Jeremiah Trueman. With Knight out and Knight’s history of injuries, who knows.. Jervis could see a lot of court time this season.

ROTY chances: Medium 

Drake U’u [Perth]

With perhaps the best name the NBL has this season, Drake U’u signed with the Wildcats have what seemed like the longest try out for an NBL club, ever.

U’u (pronounced You You) graduated from Cal Poly earlier this year after averaging 5.3 ppg as a senior. During the Blitz Drake averaged 5 ppg, 1 apg and 1 rpg. Not standout numbers but a solid 3rd string guard none the less.

Expect Drake to fight with Erik Burdon for back up minutes and Drake will win most of those battles. However he is still playing behind Martin and Beal at the guard positions. Not a lot of minutes to go around – Injury pending!

ROTY chances: Low

Cody Ellis [Sydney]

The only thing that could stop Ellis from taking out the ROTY is the fact that he won’t be playing in the NBL until around December this year. Apart from that, the Ellis to Sydney move could be a huge one for the Kings.

Ellis had a solid college career at St Louis and his size and talent should translate to a long and successful NBL/basketball career. If Ellis can mash well with the team you could see Ellis come straight into a starting role with the Kings. However the fact that he’s going to miss the first few rounds does drop his ROTY stock a little.

ROTY chances: Medium – High

Shane Harris-Tunks [Wollongong]

SHT (Don’t read that too fast!) has been signed by the Wollongong Hawks to replace last year’s rookie big man Auryn Macmillan, who signed with the Melbourne Tigers during the off season.

Don’t expect Shane to play many minutes this season, at most he will play around the same minutes as Macmillan did last season for the Hawks, however with Larry Davidson looking like he could have a career year and being behind Dave Gruber, it’s unlikely STH will be on the court for more than 3 minutes at a time.

ROTY chances: Nil – Low

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Nat Where You At

Nat Where You At

Basketball Junkie
Basketball junkie living in the real South Beach (Wollongong!). I talk too much about basketball, eat too much bacon and reminisce about the Seattle SuperSonics almost everyday.
Nat Where You At

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@Andthefoulnet If Jervis isn't like Allen from last year, and his Blitz numbers translate, he could be a favourite, IMO.


@Andthefoulnet @NBL I'd give Te Rangi a medium shot, he shoots 3s, is quick & athletic. Will get mins too. He played well for TBs this yr


@Andthefoulnet come on man, you should know that too many Moldovan clients have won ROY to let that slip ;) haha