Basketball never stops.
It’s a slogan that rings especially true for many NBL players, who utilise the league’s compacted schedule to take advantage of opportunities elsewhere around the globe after the season.
For many, that involves playing in the New Zealand NBL or competing in Australia’s second tier competition, the SEABL.
For others, opportunities to ink short term contracts in Europe or the NBA D-League can be too good to pass up.
Today, we highlight some of the players from NBL17 who are plying their trade across the seas, outside of Australia/New Zealand.
JEROME RANDLE (Limoges CSP, France)
The 2016-17 NBL MVP has returned to Europe this offseason, this time in the French Pro A with Limoges CSP.
In a reserve role behind fellow American point guard DeShaun Wood, Randle has appeared in three games thus far and is averaging 10.3 points and 6.3 assists per game. Limoges (11-12) are 2-1 with Randle on board and are sitting equal ninth in the Pro A standings.
Unsurprisingly, Randle has been turning heads with his elite playmaking. He’s also been having a bit of fun with the French media, who have compared the diminutive point guard to American singer-songwriter Pharell Williams. Grab your French-English dictionary and check out the video below.
— SFR Sport (@SFR_Sport) March 14, 2017
CASPER WARE (ASVEL, France)
Casper Ware, a member of the 2016-17 All-NBL First Team, has reunited with French club ASVEL Basket (12-11) for the remainder of the 2016-17 Pro A season, after leading them to the championship in June last year.
Ware came off the bench in his first game back, scoring 13 points and throwing 4 assists in an 82-78 win over Orleans (6-17).
Unfortunately, Pro A fans will have to wait a while to see Ware match up with Randle, as ASVEL and Limoges are not scheduled to clash until May 9.
NATHAN SOBEY (PAOK Thessaloniki, Greece)
Sobey, the NBL’s 2016-17 Most Improved Player, has made a terrific start to his Greek odyssey with PAOK.
Instantly inserted into the starting line-up, Sobey put up 14 and 8 in his opening game before scoring a game-high 25 in a dominant display against Jason Cadee and GS Kymis (7-15).
Sobey, who has not taken up his player option with Adelaide for NBL18, registered a game-high 31 minutes against Kymis and connected on 11-of-19 field goals including 3-of-6 from downtown.
Behind Sobey’s athletic play, PAOK (12-10) has moved into equal fourth in the Greek A1 League. Their next matchup will be against ASP Promitheas Patras (9-13), which features the reigning MVP of the New Zealand NBL, McKenzie Moore.
JASON CADEE (GS Kymis, Greece)
Sydney Kings guard Jason Cadee has been playing well during his first taste of European pro hoops, averaging 14.0 points per game across his first four outings for KG Kymis (7-15).
Kymis were on a seven-game losing streak when Cadee arrived, but his scoring punch helped steady the ship, securing wins over Doxa Lefkadas (4-18) and Kolossos HH (12-10) for a 2-2 record with the Aussie on court.
Immediately inserted into the starting line-up, Cadee had 12 points and 3 assists in his opening game and has scored in double figures in each game since. On March 11, Cadee exploded for a game-high 23 points to lead Kymis past fifth-placed Kolossos. The win inched Kymis one-step closer to avoiding relegation at season’s end.
BRAD NEWLEY (AEK Athens, Greece)
Also playing in Greece is Cadee’s Sydney Kings team-mate, Brad Newley, who signed with AEK Athens for the remainder for the 2016-17 season.
Newley has played in seven games for AEK Athens thus far – four in the Greek League and three in the inaugural season of FIBA’s Basketball Champions League – for an overall record of five wins and two losses.
His best performance came in a win over Promitheas (9-13), where Newley put up 10 points in 20 minutes on the floor, nailing 2-of-3 from long range.
It has been a tumultuous couple of weeks for AEK Athens, who have undergone a change of coach following the team’s elimination from the Champion’s League.
Nonetheless, they remain in the hunt back home, currently sitting third in the Greek League with a 17-5 record.
A showdown with the powerful Panathinaikos (21-1), led by former NBA players Chris Singleton and Nick Calathes, awaits on March 25.
CAMERON GLIDDON (Avtodor Saratov, Russia)
Cairns Taipans captain, Cameron Gliddon, has made a winning start to his stint with Avtodor Saratov (6-12) in Russia’s VTB League.
Gliddon scored 2 points in 11 minutes off the bench in his opening game, as his team took care of business against BC Kalev/Cramo (4-15), a team that features former Townsville Crocodiles import Mickell Gladness.
As you can see, Gliddon was pretty happy about the win.
Avtodor will play Unics Kazan (12-8) next on March 27 before taking on Lokomotiv Kuban (13-4) – led by Australian Ryan Broekhoff – on April 3.
ROTNEI CLARKE (VL Pesaro, Italy)
After going down in the NBL Grand Final Series, Illawarra Hawks import Rotnei Clarke has taken up a short term contract with Italian club VL Pesaro (7-16) for the remainder of the 2016-17 season.
Starting alongside former Sydney Kings import Marcus Thornton (20 points), Clarke scored 14 points on 5-of-11 shooting in his opening game, a ten-point loss to Grissin Bon RE (12-11).
JERMAINE BEAL (Ironi Nes-Ziona, Israel)
After being released from his NBL contract by the Brisbane Bullets back in January, Jermaine Beal signed with Ironi Nes Ziona of the Israeli National League for the rest of the 2016-17 season.
The two-time NBL champion has appeared in four games in Israel and is averaging 15.8 points, 4.3 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game. His arrival has helped Ironi Nes Ziona establish a three-game winning streak and has lifted them into equal fifth place on the standings.
TRAVIS TRICE (Westchester Knicks, NBA D-League)
After bowing out of the Swisse NBL Finals Series with the Cairns Taipans, American Travis Trice has returned to the Westchester Knicks (17-26) in the NBA D-League, whom he played with in 2015-16.
Trice made an immediate impact with the New York Knicks affiliate, averaging 16.0 points, 3.5 rebounds and 3.0 assists across his first two games, before suffering an ankle injury that has seen him sidelined for the past two weeks.
— Westchester Knicks (@wcknicks) March 4, 2017
DANIEL JOHNSON (Petrochimi Bandar Imam Harbour, Iran)
All-NBL First Team centre, Daniel Johnson, is currently playing the latter part of the Iranian Super League season with reigning champions Petrochimi Bandar Imam Harbour.
Last week Petrochimi went down to Lebanese club Al Riyadi in the final of the West Asian Basketball Association (WABA) Clubs Championship in Jordan.
JOSH BOONE (Hong Kong Eastern Long Lions, Hong Kong)
American Josh Boone has been tearing up the ASEAN Basketball League since finishing with Melbourne United last month.
Before missing the past two games with back spasms, Boone led Hong Kong Eastern to six consecutive wins, averaging 21.2 points, 14.0 rebounds and 2.2 blocked shots per game.
Melbourne CEO Vince Crivelli told media last week he remains hopeful of re-signing Boone for the NBL18.
ALEKS MARIC & DAVID BARLOW (Obradoiro CAB, Spain)
Sydney Kings centre Aleks Maric and Melbourne United forward Dave Barlow, who played together at the 2012 London Olympics, will combine at Spanish club Obradoiro (7-16) for the rest of the 2016-17 Liga Endesa season.
Maric has appeared in one game for Obradoiro, pulling down 4 boards in an upset win over perennial powerhouse Real Madrid (16-7).
Barlow, who returns to Spain for the first time since 2013, is set to make his debut on April 1 against Joventut (7-17).
Barlow and Maric are both currently NBL free agents.
RAMONE MOORE (Panevezys Lietkabelis, Lithuania)
Nearing recovery from the calf injury that prematurely ended his NBL season with Melbourne United, Ramone Moore has signed with Lithuanian club Panevezys Lietkabelis (19-8).
Moore, who is yet to take the floor for his new club, will join former Sydney Kings guard Ben Madgen at Lietkabelis, a team currently in second place behind the always-dominant Zalgiris.
For the record, Madgen (11.2 points per game) is currently the team’s second leading scorer in domestic play, but leads the team across 14 EuroCup games, averaging 13.7 points per game. In 41 total games, Madgen has averaged 12.1 points per game on 47.3 percent shooting from the field and 43 percent from long range.
JAMEEL McKAY (Phoenix Fuel Masters, Philippines)
Recently crowned NBL champion Jameel McKay has made his way to the Philippines where he will debut in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup this week with the Phoenix Fuel Masters.
GREG WHITTINGTON (Sioux Falls Skyforce, NBA D-League)
After missing the playoffs with the Sydney Kings in NBL17, American Greg Whittington has re-joined the Sioux Falls Skyforce in the NBA D-League.
After five games, Whittington is averaging 12.6 points and 6.0 rebounds per game for the Skyforce, while shooting 44 percent on 5 three-point attempts per game.
22 for #️⃣0️⃣
Greg Whittington led the Force last night with 22 points, shooting a perfect 9 for 9 from the floor 🔥 pic.twitter.com/UNVw1T8ptZ
— Sioux Falls Skyforce (@SFSkyforce) March 12, 2017
LASAN KROMAH (Egis Kormend, Hungary)
American Lasan Kromah, who played sparingly for Melbourne United in the latter stages of last season, is currently playing in the Hungarian A Division for second-placed Egis Kormend (16-7).
Kromah is balling out too, averaging 20.4 points per game on 56.5 percent shooting from the field across his first five games.
— Global Huskies (@GlobalHuskies) February 27, 2017
ANDRE INGRAM (Los Angeles D-Fenders, NBA D-League)
Another import who appeared briefly in the NBL last season, Andre Ingram, is also playing well overseas.
Ingram, who helped the Perth Wildcats secure two wins in mid-October, has re-joined the Los Angeles D-Fenders (32-13) in the NBA D-League. The sharpshooter has played in five games thus far and has quickly found his touch, averaging 18.3 points per game across his last three.
In his most recent game, Ingram nailed 7-of-11 threes on the way to a game-high 28 points in a win over Greg Whittington’s Sioux Falls (26-20).
Andre Ingram is a three point champion in every way possible
— L.A. D-Fenders (@DFenders) March 19, 2017
DEVIN WILLIAMS (Greensboro Swarm, NBA D-League)
Williams, who played 16 games for Melbourne last season, is currently averaging 1.6 points and 1.6 rebounds per game in limited minutes for the Greensboro Swarm in the NBA D-League.
Written for NBL.com.au by Liam Santamaria