Boomers plans on track despite Brown’s NBA commitments
Head coach of the Australian Boomers Brett Brown says that his inability to be on Australian soil at present due to his American NBA team’s deep playoff run will not have any adverse impact on the Boomers’ London preparations.
Brown is an assistant coach with the NBA’s San Antonio Spurs, who are currently holding a 2-1 series lead against Oklahoma City Thunder in the Western Conference Finals.
The extended Boomers squad heads into camp in Perth on Sunday ahead of the YouYi Games, a three-match series against China in Western Australia.
With San Antonio still considered favourites to clinch the NBA Western Conference title and Brown expected to miss the upcoming YouYi Games as a result, the mantle of head coach for the series against China will fall to Boomers Head Assistant Coach Andrej Lemanis.
Brown said that not only does he have complete faith in his coaching staff to help lead the group while he is offshore, he also has complete faith in the program they have put together over the past three years to prepare the team for the upcoming games.
“To have a program in place that starts this early is very unique to most other nations. We have a terrific opportunity to start our preparation with a hand full of prospective Olympians in early June. It’s something that makes Australia distinctive in our preparation. Our goal now is to get our guys together and slowly move forward in the direction that we need to go," said Brown.
"This situation is something that we’ve been monitoring for a long period of time. Fortunately we’ve also had our core group playing high level international basketball together for the past three years, so this is the culmination of a long preparation. With the resources that Basketball Australia has put in place, we will be able to monitor everything on a day-to-day process and continue to move the program forward.
"To date we are very pleased with the direction we are heading. My staff and these guys have been doing this for a long time. Both Andrej and (fellow Boomers assistant coach) Marty (Clarke) have been preparing this group for a while. We are all looking forward to a good solid camp and series against China,” he said.
Basketball Australia’s General Manager of High Performance Steven Icke said that the current set of circumstances was always a possibility when Brett Brown was appointed as the head coach of the Australian Boomers, but the benefits of having someone of Brown’s stature within international basketball at the helm of the group has far outweighed any potential minor disruptions associated with the current set of circumstances.
“We have been planning for this possibility for some time now, and with the core group of players having been together for some time, the group will be able to remain focused and forward moving in terms of their goals and objectives for London,” Icke said.
“Brett has already won Championships in one of the most prestigious leagues in the world, and he has not only delivered a first class program to the Boomers' players, but has prepared a contingency plan which is now in effect as a result of his commitments in the NBA,” he said.
A number of additional and uncontrollable factors have also contributed to the current situation, including the NBA lock-out which pushed the NBA Play-Offs to start two weeks later than usual, and also the fact that the London Games are scheduled to start earlier than Beijing.
The Boomers vs China series - The YouYi Games - tips off in Perth on Saturday, 9 June at 2pm from Challenge Stadium. The series then moves to the Albany Leisure and Aquatic Centre on Monday 11 June at 7pm, before concluding on Wednesday 13 June at Challenge Stadium at 8pm.
For more information on the YouYi Series and tickets visit: www.youyigames.com