NBL Import Watch – Round 5
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THE NATIONAL Basketball League (NBL) is home to a number of talents both domestic and international, with players from all over the world heading down under to play in one of the strongest competitions in the world.
Each year, NBL teams are allowed three imports on their roster as they look to help nurture some of the most enticing talents across the globe. Imports often dominate headlines, given they come into the competition as established players with some playing in the world’s best competitions.
With that in mind, Rookie Me Central will be keeping an eye on how the fresh imports for 2022/23 are faring on a weekly basis, and what they are bringing to their respective teams.
Barry Brown Jr. – New Zealand Breakers
The exciting guard produced his best performance during his short tenure with the Breakers in his side’s dominant win over the JackJumpers. Having struggled with efficiency in the opening rounds of the 2022/23 season, Brown Jr. found the bottom of the net on nine of his 11 attempts from the field, including going 4/5 from three-point territory on his way to 24 points. He came off the bench and provided a serious spark in the second half as New Zealand broke away from Tassie.
Jarell Brantley – New Zealand Breakers
While it was Brown Jr. that dominated the headlines in New Zealand’s win over Tasmania, Brantley was the star of the show a couple of days earlier as the Breakers took down a stacked 36ers side. Adelaide hosts a number of talented imports, but Brantley stood above all, with the passionate big man dominating inside to deliver a 22-point, nine-rebound performance. He also chimed in for a trio of triples, leading his side as he has done on a few occasions as New Zealand continue to exceed expectations.
D.J Hogg – Cairns Taipans
Speaking of exceeding expectations, Hogg and the Taipans are doing some serious damage in the NBL over the first five rounds. Although they fell in heartbreaking fashion to the Kings, Hogg was an absolute star for the Taipans. With the side going all in on their big-man style of play, he has thrived, and contributed in a massive way against Sydney with 27 points on 9/13 shooting. What makes his campaign so impressive is the fact that he is doing it on both ends, with the import delivering five rebounds, three steals and three blocks too. Hogg has played a massive role in the Taipans’ success to start the season, and that trend looks destined to continue as he looks to return Cairns to the postseason come fixture’s end.