Abdul-Bassit ready to ball, experience other cultures in Australia
In Australia, no less.
The 24-year-old basketball star has signed with the Toowoomba Mountaineers of the Queensland Basketball League, the country’s second division.
“I’m ecstatic to go there and play,” he told me. “The most exciting part is just to be able to what you love in life, which for me is playing basketball.
“Also, experiencing other cultures is always great for growth as a person, so I love it.”
Adbul-Bassit, of East High fame, is a former University of Oregon standout who as a senior in 2015 averaged 8.2 points for the Ducks and finished fifth in the Pac-12 with a .434 3-point shooting percentage.
Last season, the 6-foot-4 guard averaged 5.5 points in limited duty with the Idaho Stampede of the NBA D-League.
“I can’t recall anyone with his experience who has played in the QBL recently. He’s coming fit and ready straight out of the D-league,” Mountaineers coach Anthony Corcoran told the Toowoomba News. “It is good to finally put the pieces together.”
Adbul-Bassit is aware of the high expectations surrounding his signing for a Mountaineers franchise looking to regain the form that saw them reach the playoff semifinals in 2015.
“The team is expecting me to put up big numbers and I’m expecting to go there and dominate as well,” he said.
The Alaskan wants to use his time in the QBL to impress teams in Australia’s premier NBL.
“The goal is to get in the top league,” he said.
Some coaches already expressed an interest in Adbul-Bassit, but he opted for the D-League and signed with the Salt Lake City Stars. He was later released, which led to him signing with Toowoomba.