London Lightning releases its roster

With a quick media conference at the end of October, the London Lightning laid down the first pieces of its 2014-15 National Basketball League of Canada campaign, by revealing its roster. While many of the players may not be with the team by the end of the season, the expectations are still high. Owner Vito Frijia called this squad the most talented in the franchise’s history. In this article, we take a look at each player and what they bring to the table.

#1 Maurice Bolden

Mo is one of the five players returning to the Lightning this season. Bolden, who was considered a project of former head coach Micheal Ray Richardson, didn’t play much last year. However, the 6 ft. 10 in. swingman has impressed current head coach Carlos Knox so far – to the point where he is projected to start for the Bolts.

#2 Emmanuel Little

Little has been made of Little through the preseason. The small forward started London’s preseason game against Mississauga, and made some decent plays. Little was known for his rebounding in Mexico, where he shot 50 per cent from the field before arriving in London this year.

#3 Zane Johnson

Zane also started for London during that 108-102 win over the Power at Budweiser Gardens. The 6 ft. 7 in. shooting guard is coming off stint in the NBA Las Vegas Summer League with the New York Knicks, and is considered a threepoint specialist in the NBLC.

#4 Elvin Mims

In his 11th year as a pro, Elvin Mims has been appointed as assistant coach/player for the upcoming campaign. The lanky forward will prove to be one of the best rebounders in the league again this season.

#5 Clinton Springer-Williams

Springer-Williams is a former Regina Mundi Titan. He is one of the two Londoners on this Lightning line up. The rookie is coming from Carleton, where he won backto- back Canadian university titles.

#7 Qunicy Okolie

Okolie is a known Canadian commodity in this league, as the defensive 6 ft. 9 in. centre will add some beef to the middle of the court for London. Okolie – a native of Florida – also counts as a Canadian player due to his Montreal-born mother.

#10 Al Stewart

Stewart has arrived in London after three seasons with the Island Storm, where he was their leader on the court for three seasons. The 5 ft. 11 in. point guard led the league in assists at 5.6 per game last season. He has also been named NBLC Defensive Player Of The Year twice.

#11 Enrico DiLoreto

The other Londoner on the roster, DiLoreto played his university basketball in Windsor – where he is the all-time leading scorer in their men’s program. Expect him to get some serious minutes this year.

#12 John Hart

Likely a bench player, Hart is from Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis – a school that Carlos Knox is linked to. The shooting guard averaged 16ppg with an Indianapolis-based team in the Premier Basketball League last season.

#13 Stephen McDowell

McDowell has been played as a starter in the preseason, as Knox seems to have a thing for the athletic point guard. He averaged 13ppg with London last year.

#15 Kurt Alexander

Alexander is the fourth and final Canadian on this list. Coming off a college career at Duke, where he averaged 7ppg, the point guard will likely be sitting in the bench for most of the season.

#45 Marvin Phillips

The 2013 NBLC Finals MVP is back with London this season, ready to up his stats he put up last year before leaving for a team in France. Phillips is a beast who routinely destroys defenses in this league.
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