Pre-season to decide Tigers leadership
FINALLY possessing a fit roster, Melbourne Tigers coach Chris Anstey now has two key issues to deal with when the NBL’s pre-season tournament tips off on Thursday.
Anstey will use the three-day event, at Dandenong Stadium, to determine his starting five for the season proper and also just who should be captain.
Small forward Tommy Greer was skipper last season and remains in the frame for the role in a rebuilt team.
"We are waiting for a leader to step forward and carry the group with them," Anstey said yesterday.
"We have a whole bunch of guys who are exactly on the same level which is great in one way but also difficult in another.
"There are a lot of voices at the moment. I think any real successful group has those one or two voices who where when the rest die down, you really look to when things are going a bit rough.
"We looking for someone to step up and lead. We haven’t nominated a captain yet. I don’t think we will be doing that before the (pre-season) Blitz because you learn a lot about them when the games start."
The Tigers face Cairns on Thursday night and Perth on Friday, with overall positions to determine playoff placings on Saturday.
Anstey said three of the Tigers news faces appeared certain starters - Kevin Braswell at the point, Chris Goulding at shooting guard and Adam Ballinger at power forward.
Import Seth Scott, who has battled a virus and strained abdominal muscles since arriving, and veteran centre Matt Burston are also in contention to add strength to the starting frontline.
"We are going to have a deep team which can be a real positive or it can be difficult with the rotations and with the flow," Anstey said.
"This is another reason we need these games to see which line-up looks together. We are going to learn a lot."
So will Anstey. This will be the 37-year-old’s first official tournament in charge since replacing Trevor Gleeson.
The former NBL and NBA centre already has one coaching philosophy.
"I coach according to form and feel. I won’t have predetermined rotations," he said.
"Who starts is irrelevant. It’s who we finish with that I think is going to be really important."