Good Will hunting play-off berth before Boomers
WILL Magnay was modelling Brisbane's special NBL Indigenous Round jersey on Thursday and it will not be long until the 208cm-tall young gun is being fitted for an Australian Boomers singlet.
The 21-year-old was named in the preliminary 24-man Boomers squad for the FIBA Asia Cup qualifiers against New Zealand and Hong Kong on February 20 and 23.
But players who are in NBL finals-bound teams will not be available to play.
So Magnay is happy to wait a little longer for his national call-up if it means he is playing playoff basketball with the Bullets who are sixth on the NBL ladder with a 10-11 record ahead of Saturday's clash with Illawarra at "The Armoury".
"It's a bit bittersweet. I definitely want to put on the green-and-gold but I'm also focused on helping the Bullets make the top four as well,'' he said.
"It was really special to see my name in that squad and it validates the work that I've put in.
"The confidence that everyone has in me has given me a little more freedom. The coaches back me and the players back me and I can try a few more things out there."
Magnay said he and the club were "working through some stuff" over a new contract and his agent was handling any potential NBA Summer League offers as his first focus was Brisbane's playoff bid.
"It's cool and exciting and this is all a bit new to me but I've got good people around me, backing me and a lot people I can ask questions of to make sure I'm in the right spot,'' Magnay said.
Brisbane players, coaches and staff learned about the significance of the Indigenous jersey design which incorporates the local area around Nissan Arena with the uniform to be worn in the Bullets' Round 18 clash with Melbourne on February 1.
Rork Projects - Australia's leading Indigenous construction and fit out company - will be the club's special Indigenous Round sponsor.
"Any time that we can recognise the traditional owners of the land, it is special. We have a couple of Indigenous guys in our squad and it's really special for them to have this round,'' Magnay said.
Bullets coach Andrej Lemanis hoped Brisbane could do the jersey justice and it was important to the club to understand what the design represented, which was connecting cultures.
He said Brisbane remained in playoff contention with some good basketball in the past month that had come from a better understanding of roles, less stress and greater defensive intensity.