5/17/12

No More Balls

The 36ers today announced Adam Ballinger won't be back with them for season 2012-2013. "Balls" has chosen to sign with the Tigers and return to the city where he started his NBL career. It's a shame to see him go, but a number of factors seemed to have contributed to his future here being grim.  It's not a huge shock he's leaving with his recent injury issues, age, expected asking price and the likelihood he'd be coming off the bench for the 2011-2012 wooden spooner, which seems odd seeing he'd likely start for any other team bar New Zealand. I've got a feeling his departure will hurt the team more than management might think.

Ballinger joined the Sixers for the 2007-2008 season and won four consecutive clum MVP's. The season just gone was the first time in his tenure that he didn't take the trophy home and he had a decent excuse- he only played 8 games. These are his numbers for his 5 years with Adelaide.

*In 2009-2010 the league went to 40min games

2007-2008
22.5pts on 17.2 FGA @ 54.1%
8.1 reb
37.8 mpg

2008-2009
20.4pts on 15.8 FGA @ 50.8%
7.9 reb
37.2 mpg

2009-2010
17.6pts on 13.8 FGA @ 51.9%
5.3 reb
32.8mpg

2010-2011
15.3pts on 12.3 FGA @ 54.2%
6 reb
27.7 mpg

2011-2012
5.5pts on 7.1 FGA @ 33%
4.1 reb
18.3 mpg

I was hopeful the 36ers would be able to convince him to stay and accept a bench role but obviously there were still teams (or at least 1) who think he's still got plenty in the tank and will pay him accordingly. There aren't loads of naturalised Americans like Adam Ballinger in the league and his loss will be a double whammy as currently the 36ers have no back up bigs and they'll be hard pressed to find an "Aussie" who can bring to the table what he did.

All the best, Balls. One of my favourites.

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