Braves imports touch down

THE Bendigo Bank Braves imports have landed.

American players Zack Atkinson and Dustin Salisbery and Perth Wildcats development player Michael Vigor touched down in Bendigo on Monday.

The three players all have one goal this season, to win the SEABL championship.

Salisbery, who has had a stint with the Delaware 87ers in the NBA D-League, said he was excited to be a part of the Braves team.

“It is my first time being this far away from home,” he said.

“I have played in Europe for a few seasons so this is a new experience for me.

“I am looking forward to having a great time here.

“We are going to try and win the championship.

“It is still early days now but that is my main goal for coming here to win.”

The 29-year-old, stands at 195 centimetres and averaged 8.5 points and 4 rebounds per game with the 87ers.

He said Braves fans should expect him to play hard and give 100 per cent.

“I am an experienced player, I play defence and offence, I am very versatile,” Salisbery said.

His new team mate Zack Atkinson from South Carolina has played in competitions all over the world.

Last year he played in the NZ National Basketball League with the Waikato Pistons averaging almost 19 points a game.

The 206cm centre said he will try hard to ensure Bendigo wins a national championship this season.

“From what I am hearing Bendigo is a top of the line club and I want to be on the winning side of things,” Atkinson said.

“We want to be competing in the playoffs; we want to be a contender.

“I will play as a hard as I can and provide for the team.”

Michael Vigor also got a taste of Bendigo for the first time on Monday.

The 23-year-old said the Braves’ facilities were of a high quality.

He said he was looking forward to putting on a show.

“I hate losing,” Vigor said.

“I love to win.

“I can run the floor, finish around the ring and rebound.

“I will do all the gritty things to help us win.”

Braves coach Ben Harvey said the three new players each brought something different to the team.

“The two Americans both have really good international experience and that is one of the things that I wanted to bring to the table,” he said.

Harvey, now in his fifth season as coach, said he was excited about his team’s prospects this season.

The Braves will begin training on Tuesday before competing in the SEABL preseason tournament in Horsham this weekend.

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