Transfer watch: SIG Strasbourg add another high-scoring guard
MIES (Switzerland) - Coach Lassi Tuovi and his front office have a similar pattern for each season, it seems. SIG Strasbourg found another gem at the point guard position, making them a potential Final Four threat once again.
The fact that Strasbourg built a culture with guys like Ish Wainright or Bonzie Colson making leaps in their careers sure made recruiting a whole lot easier in the past couple of years.
The core from last season is still here, with Jean-Baptiste Maille, DeAndre Lansdowne, Leo Cavaliere, Matt Mitchell and Ike Udanoh. 17-year-old Illan Pietrus earned promotion to first team through the club's academy.
The biggest new arrival is Marcus Keene. Just like Brandon Jefferson and John Roberson, Keene has the same undersized-high-scoring-guard profile that suits coach Tuovi's plans. At 27, he's reaching the prime of his career, which is a scary sight for all opponents.
That's because Keene won back-to-back top scorer's awards, with Kalev/Cramo in the VTB United League in 2021, and with Varese in LegaBasket Serie A in 2022. Keene also had a special NCAA career, which saw him being the first player to average 30.0 points per game in 20 years.
Stan Okoye is another big name arriving in Strasbourg over the summer. The Nigerian international is 31, can cover the shooting guard and small forward positions, and similar to Keene, he took his career to another level while in Italy with Varese.
Okoye spent the last four seasons in Spain, sharing them equally with Zaragoza and Gran Canaria. He averaged 10.4 points in the Liga Endesa last season, and was a regular on Top Plays because of his ability to fly through the sky and knock down impossible off balance shots.
🌪️ IMPARABLE— Liga Endesa (@ACBCOM) October 23, 2021
Sí, estamos hablando de @StanOkoye_ ¡Qué partidazo se ha marcado!
2⃣4⃣ de valoración #LigaEndesa#ListosParaRomperla pic.twitter.com/UO9pLWky0O
Bodian Massa will be in charge of the painted area. He's a 24-year-old center, 2.08m/6'10'' tall, getting his first go at the international stage, having played for Fos-sur-Mer in the lower divisions in France, and in the LNB Pro A, where he averaged 9.5 points and 7.2 rebounds in 34 games last season.
Massa is a big body inside the arc, who will pair up with Ike Udanoh to stop everybody from scoring easily from the painted area. Offensively, look for him to be a contender for most dunks in a single BCL season
Service royal 👑 pour le dunk de Bodian Massa !#BetclicELITE @FosProvenceBB pic.twitter.com/UuBiub3d24— LNB (@LNBofficiel) January 22, 2022
Lucas Beaufort is making a comeback to SIG Strasbourg after a season with Aix-Maurienne in the Second Division. The 20-year-old guard had a stellar U21 season in 2020-21, getting 13.3 points, 3.8 assists and 3.3 rebounds per game for SIG.
His first real pro campaign ended with 7.9 points, 2.6 assists and 2.0 rebounds per game in 31 appearances for Aix-Maurienne, all done in just 24 minutes on the floor. Beaufort is a regular on all French youth teams, he spent the summer with the U20 selection.
SIG Strasbourg will play in Regular Season Group A, with Falco Szombathely, UCAM Murcia, and the winner of the Qualifying Rounds Tournament.