June 10, 2010
Teams in Australia's NBL tend to sort out their rosters nice and early, and so even though we're several months away from the 2010-11 season tipping off, many rosters are all but complete already. Despite him winning the NBL MVP trophy last season, the Townsville Crocodiles have released Corey "Homicide" Williams, and have not named a replacement import, although they have brought in former St. Mary's big man Ben Allen (who is also currently trying out for the Australian national team.) The Melbourne Tigers have brought home from America another big Aussie centre (Luke Nevill), and have signed Eric Devendorf to score from them after his hugely successful offseason in New Zealand (at least basketball wise; Devendorf managed to get arrested for breach of the peace in there as well.) And the Sydney Kings are returning to the NBL after a season out due to financial difficulties, bringing with them Taj McCullough, who had previously been in Latvia with VEF Riga.
April 11, 2010
- Luke Nevill
Utah graduate Luke Nevill signed a training camp contract with the Cavaliers this offseason, even though Cleveland knew they weren't going to carry another big, and even though they knew that three incredibly slow 7'2 guys was probably at least one too many. He then went to the D-League, where, inevitably, he was assigned to the Utah Flash. Nevill had an inconsistent season marred by injuries in the early going, but in the end he finished with solid averages of 24.2 minutes, 11.8 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per game, shooting 54% from the field. In 47 games, he never grabbed more than 10 rebounds in any game, which seems unlikely from your 7'2 starter.
Five to ten years ago, Nevill might have gotten a chance in the NBA. He's an offensively talented 7'2, after all, and you don't see that often. But the slow plodding post-up player is being phased out for now. Mind you, as evidenced by Spencer Nelson, there's always the possibility that the Jazz could give a training camp contract to the hometown boy.