The Sal’s NBL 2021 Imports: Where Are They Now?

All up, 22 imports graced our Sal's NBL courts during the 2021 season. Some lasted the whole season, some didn't. One lifted silverware, one was named to the all star 5, one became a fashion icon. 

The life of an import is a nomadic one. Season to season often means hemisphere to hemisphere, and it's not different for the import class of the 2021 Sal's NBL. 

Let's take a look at where they are now...

Auckland Huskies: Jeremy Kendle, Chris Johnson (pictured), Justin Bibbs

The Huskies started the season with just one import, Jeremy Kendle, who was here for a good time not a long time. In his three games, Kendle led the Huskies to three wins, starring in all of them, including sinking two game winners. He then left to an already agreed contract with the Logan Thunder in NBL1 North in Australia, where he was named MVP as he led his team to the semis. 

Chris Johnson, one of the stars of the 2021 season, left the Huskies with just a week to go before the finals. He went off to play in the Big 3 in the states.

Justin Bibbs was the only import to finish the season with the Sled Pullers, but couldn't suit up in their semi final through injury. The American is now in Poland playing for Slask Wroclaw.

Franklin Bulls: Josh Selby, Zane Waterman, Kyrin Galloway (pictured), Manel Ayol

The Stockyard was home to a record 4 imports in 2021. Josh Selby was a loud addition to the Bulls, the former NBA guard lasting half a season before injury saw him leave. The American is now in Lithuania playing for Pieno Zvaigzdes.

Zane Waterman was another who suffered an injury, breaking his thumb on the rim. He has recovered fully and is plying his trade in Portugal for U.D Oliveirense Cacarola.

Manel Ayol came late in the season and is currently looking for a club back home in Australia, while Kyrin Galloway is with the Sky Sport Breakers as their Australian NBL season is about to tip-off. 

Hawke's Bay Hawks: Devondrick Walker (pictured), Rhys Vague

Devondrick Walker helped the Hawks to the Grand Final where he had a chance to sneak a win at the end. The "Winter Soldier" is now in Europe, playing for VEF Rīga in the Latvian–Estonian Basketball League.

Japan welcomed fan and player favourite Rhys Vague back for another season after he left NZ. He suits up for the team formerly coached by Pauli Henare, the Kagawa Five Arrows in the Japanese B League.

Taranaki Airs: Nelson Kirksey (pictured)

Kirksey lasted just a handful of games in the colours of the Airs, before both parties agreed to part ways. He is currently without a team.

Manawatu Jets: Daishon Knight (pictured), DeAndre Daniels

Jets favourite Daishon Knight returned for another season in green and white, this time bolstered by former NBA and ANBL big DeAndre Daniels.

Knight is now playing for Lions de Geneve in Switzerland, while Daniels is yet to find another team.

Wellington Saints: Kerwin Roach Jr (pictured), Romaro Gill

The champs went most of the season with only one import, having agreed to part ways with Romaro Gill mid season. The tallest import in Sal's NBL history is now with Raptors 905, the G-League affiliate of the Toronto Raptors.

Roach Jr lasted the whole season, and was named Finals MVP. He's also in the G League, with the Windy City Bulls - affiliate to the Chicago Bulls.

Nelson Giants: Hunter Hale (pictured), Donte Ingram

The only import to make the All Star 5, Hunter Hale, wowed fans up and down the league with his speed, skills, and deep shooting for the Giants. Hale is now in Serbia with KK Borac Cacak where he's averaging 13 ppg through his first seven games.

Ingram, one of the most explosive players in the 2021 season signed with a Dutch team once leaving Nelson. He's averaging double digits with Donar Gronigen. 

Canterbury Rams: EJ Singler (pictured), Deshon Taylor

Deshon Taylor had to play out of position with the Rams in 2021 as the club waiting for a never-to-return Taylor Britt. Taylor has since moved to Kouvot, a Finnish team that former Tall Blacks Phill Jones and Tony Rampton once played for.

EJ Singler, a former Hawk who suited up for the Rams in 2021, has retired from basketball.

Otago Nuggets: Isaiah Moss, Geremy McKay (pictured)

Breakers fans will see a fair bit of Isaiah Moss over the next months, as the Nuggets' American star guard will suit up for the Brisbane Bullets in the Australian NBL. 

Geremy McKay was a fan favourite in Dunedin, sign with a club in his hometown of Melbourne, but lockdown has hampered any start to the season for the fashion icon.

Southland Sharks: Courtney Belger (pictured), Josh Cunningham

Americans Belger and Cunningham were instrumental in the Sharks run to the semi final in 2021, forming integral parts of Rob Beveridge's offense. 

Belger is currently playing in Bulgaria for Chernomorets, while Cunningham is plying his trade for Borac BL in Bosnia.


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