Our first All Star Five line-up of the 2015-16 campaign sees strong British representation and even more home-grown talent on our bench.
Elvisi Dusha (Surrey Scorchers)
Ahead of the big tip-off, we pinpointed Dusha as the man to watch this season in his role as the only survivor from the pre-Scorcher days of 2014-15. And, the Brit guard didn’t waste any time in showing how influential he could be, after sinking a smart six of seven shooting effort at the hoop as he corralled 15 points in a fabulous comeback road win against Bristol Flyers. The guard also added an impressive seven rebounds and five assists.
Callum Jones (Manchester Giants)
It was a spectacular opening night for another British backcourt star as Jones caught fire from the first minute of the new season with a stellar display for his side. He helped Giants win their north-west derby clash against Cheshire Phoenix. The guard spoiled the party for the sell-out crowd at the Cheshire Oaks Arena with a mesmerising nine of ten shooting performance inside the three-point line as he garnered a fine 18 points. He also had a superb nine rebounds and majestic nine assists, to open with an effort that was just one rebound and one assist shy of a triple-double. Therefore hardly surprising it was the best of opening weekend and returned a performance valuation of 32.
Charles Smith (Esh Group Eagles Newcastle)
It didn’t take long for last season’s BBL MVP to get rolling in 2015-16 after the player affectionately nicknamed ‘Charlie Buckets’ helped the defending champions get off to a winning start with a hard fought success at Sheffield Sharks. The versatile forward showcased the devastating inside-outside game which has illuminated the BBL for years, after amassing 25 points in a haul which included five downtown scores. He also handed out five assists and hauled down three rebounds.
Tayo Ogedengbe (Surrey Scorchers)
With an all-British backcourt in our line-up, there is also UK representation in the paint too. Ogedengbe gets his reward for what was a pivotal contribution in a thrilling success at the WISE Arena against Flyers. The forward celebrated his 200th appearance in the BBL with a double-double of 19 points and 12 rebounds, in addition to three assists and two steals – the last of which was the game-winning steal and pass that cemented victory.
Brian Voelkel (London Lions)
While he arrived in the capital labelled as primarily a defensive kingpin, the Lions look like they are set to benefit from a whole lot more after Voelkel posted a super BBL debut in the win at Plymouth University Raiders. He recorded an efficient and eye-catching double-double of 14 points and 10 rebounds, as well as showing an eye for a pass with four assists. He also underlined his renowned defensive prowess by grabbing three precious steals in what was the second best performance valuation of opening weekend.
Off the bench – Andrew Thomson (Esh Group Eagles Newcastle), Olu Babalola (Manchester Giants), David Aliu (Cheshire Phoenix), Pavol Losonsky (Worcester Wolves), Kieron Achara (Glasgow Rocks), Jerrold Brooks (Sheffield Sharks), Rob Marsden (Leeds Force)