The Adelaide 36ers have added defensive toughness and experience to their 2019-20 roster, signing an exciting new US import and three NBL veterans.
Former Fresno State Bulldog’s point guard, Deshon Taylor, has signed a one-year deal as the club’s third and final US import.
Standing at 188cm, the 23-year-old Californian is a two-time All Mountain First Teamer and averaged 17.9 points, 5.0 assists, 3.7 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game last season for the Bulldogs.
Coach Joey Wright described Taylor as a two-way player who is set to make an impact on the NBL.
“Every coach we’ve checked up on has compared his game to Patrick Beverley, in the fact that he’s a tough defender, he gets after it, he’s always ready to play and he brings it but he’s got the ability to shoot the ball as well. He can shoot the ball from deep.
“He’s a guy that has done it the hard way had to transfer into a higher program in college. A kid that we’re really looking forward to coming in and really making his mark on the NBL,” Wright said.
Taylor will be joined by Brendan Teys, who returns for his seventh season with the 36ers, Illawarra Hawks’ former captain Kevin White and veteran point guard Daniel Dillion, who have all signed two-year deals with the club.
After highlighting defence as a key area of improvement for the upcoming season, Wright is excited to add the three veterans to his list.
“The guys that we’re bringing in are all coming in for specific reasons. A couple of things we wanted to try and improve on last year was our defensive awareness, so we wanted to bring guys in that are better defenders.
“We felt we weren’t tough enough and wanted guys that were a little bit more resilient, so we wanted to bring in guys that play D, are resilient, obviously have the ability to score and have a skill set we can apply to the game,” Wright said.
The three-time NBL Coach of the Year is confident Teys and White will act as the glue to bring the roster together.
“The bottom line is, we felt like we weren’t tough enough last year. We felt like a lot of guys backed away and backed off and one of those things Kevin White brings is toughness and leadership.
“We wanted to bring along another glue guy to go along with Teysey. A lot of what Teysey does is off the court, around the locker room and also the things he does on the court, playing D and moving the ball to the right spot.
“I’m always intrigued and interested how Australian basketball fans want everyone to be almost what a Brett Maher and Andrew Gaze was. They want everyone to be able to shoot the ball, they want everyone to be able to handle the ball and it’s just not that way.
“If you look at the really great teams they have really good role players that do specific things to help that team win. Teysey has captained his team all the way to the Grand Final and he started on a team that made the Grand Final. Since the first year I was here in Adelaide he’s been extremely valuable to our program and what we do,” Wright said.
The team’s leadership is further strengthened by the addition of Daniel Dillion, who injects international experience, having played in France, Japan, Poland and Romania, as well as NBL stints for the Cairns Taipans and the former Melbourne Tigers and South Dragons.
“Dan is one of those guys that we wanted to bring in with some leadership qualities. He has the ability to play great defence, which is what he’s done all of his career wherever he’s been,” Wright said.
“He will definitely come in and take on a big role for us. He can still bag up the point guard for us, he’ll probably play at the two most of the time and we’ll look for him to get some points on the board as well. We’re really putting a lot of work into Dan.”
The four signings join Daniel Johnson, Anthony Drmic, Harry Froling, Jack McVeigh, Jacob Wiley and Ramone Moore, with just one spot remaining to finalise the 2019-20 roster
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