Riders Media - 29th June 2023
An update from Head Coach Rob Paternostro
Firstly, I’d like to thank everybody for your continued support. The offseason is an exciting time for us, but we can’t wait to see you back in the stands for our first game!
Looking back, we’re coming off a really good season. We improved from the beginning to the end, and I thought we were a better team at the O2 Arena in May than we were throughout the course of the year. That’s satisfying as a coach.
We just couldn’t get over the hump against London. We had opportunities, but we just weren’t able to convert them. But when you look at how we competed against the rest of the league, we had an exceptional record.
This time of year is exciting for coaches. We’re looking at prospective players and putting the pieces together.
We anticipate having to sign a lot of players so we’re trying to see who is the right fit. It’s a change from last season where almost everyone came back. This year is going to be totally different.
It’s a huge task going into the offseason after we’ve had the core of our team together for so long, but we have to do our due diligence looking at the players that are out there and trying to figure out the best way to rebuild.
We haven’t ruled out re-signing guys from last season, but we have to understand that our players have put in really good seasons and will be marketable around the world.
Having Kimbal back is a blessing for us. On the court, he’s a really dangerous player to deal with for opponents. His ability to score and get in the lane to make key plays at key moments is really valuable to our team.
Off the court, his leadership and commitment to practice and gameplan are second to none. He’s going to help immensely with the transition with new guys.
READ MORE: Return of the Mack!
And speaking of new players, we’re delighted to have Sam Idowu on board!
He is versatile, which I really like about him. You can put him in different positions on the floor, so he’s not just a traditional big. His versatility will be really beneficial.
He’s a good rebounder and he’s always been a high-field goal percentage scorer, so we have an efficient player with energy and versatility. I’m really looking forward to working with Sam.
He has great size and strength, and I think it’s important in basketball to have that. Ultimately, you have to protect and finish around the basket.
It’s an exciting time, and when you evaluate and sign a player, you certainly look forward to working with them.
READ MORE: Riders sign Idowu
It’s almost like unwrapping a gift! So when we get to August, we can’t wait to look at some of these players. It’s one of the parts of the job I look forward to. It’s a challenge, and it’s not a science by any means, but I’m looking forward to it.
We know there’s plenty of games in the BBL, so there are lots of opportunities to compete, and we’re excited about the challenge ahead.
Thank you all for your patience this offseason, and we have some exciting news down the line for you all!