The Auckland Huskies have added Isaac Miller-Jose to their roster for the remainder of the 2020 Sal’s NBL season.
Huskies Head Coach Kevin Braswell has a former Wellington Saints teammate to thank for alerting him to the availability of Miller-Jose.
“I have to give Damien Ekenasio all the praise because he called me and said there was a player in Wellington who might be able to help us. He sent Leon (Henry) a tape and as soon as I saw the film I said I know the kid and it was Isaac.
“He was a young development player at the Saints when I last saw him and he was an athletic, get up and down the floor rebounder and just played hard.
“What I liked was that he played within his capabilities and didn’t try to do too many things. I liked his game but at that stage he wanted to go to college so we couldn’t sign him for the Saints.
“He will add something that we don’t have right now. Leon and Tohi (Smith-Milner) bring outside shooting. Isaac’s been overseas, put some weight on, and I’m looking forward to him coming in.”
Miller-Jose only linked up with the Huskies on Wednesday morning so Braswell isn’t putting high expectations on his rookie forward.
“We’ll just put him in and run some plays that he will know and just ask him to give us limited minutes for the first couple of weeks and see how he goes but we won’t be putting a lot of pressure on him to deliver right away.”
For the 2.03m forward, who will add depth to the Huskies front court, it had been a whirlwind few days.
“Speaking to Damien Ekenasio at the weekend I mentioned to him that I was looking for somewhere to play and he mentioned he had a connection with KB (Kevin Braswell).
“Conversations took place for a couple of days and he got back to me on Monday saying there could be an opportunity with the Huskies.
“On Tuesday there was a bunch of emails and phone calls between Damien, my university coach who was very supportive, and Matt (Lacey) so everything happened very quickly”
Isaac was on a plane from Wellington on Wednesday morning and at Huskies practice later in the day.
The Wellington College product has spent the last three years on a basketball scholarship at Manitoba University, Winnipeg in Canada.
Last season Manitoba had a 17-5 record with Miller-Jose playing all 22 games. He averaged 5.2 points, 3.9 rebounds and 1 block per game.
The 21-year old is looking forward to donning a Huskies uniform and playing in the NBL.
“I’m looking forward to playing with some really good talent and enjoy having a great point guard in Izayah and have some good veteran teammates who know the league.
“Also I’ll enjoy competing and playing against some of the best players in New Zealand. It’s a huge opportunity for me to improve my game.
“I’m an athletic 6’8” power forward or small forward with a decent shot and try and out run and out jump everyone on the court,” said Isaac when asked to sum up his own game.
Huskies fans will get to see Isaac in action. He will make his NBL debut on Thursday night when the Huskies take on the Canterbury Rams at Trusts Arena, tip-off 5.30pm.