Basketball: New Zealand Breakers sign Rob Loe

Rob Loe (left) has signed with the Breakers. Photo / Getty
Rob Loe (left) has signed with the Breakers. Photo / Getty

Rob Loe is coming home.

The Tall Blacks centre is the latest signing by the New Zealand Breakers, heading back down under after six seasons overseas.

Loe was a member of the inaugural Breakers Development Academy before spending four seasons at Saint Louis in Division One collegtiate basketball. He then plied his trade in Greece and Belgium, before being snapped up by the Breakers.

The 6'11" centre is a handy offensive piece, able to spread the floor from deep and operate as a passer out of the post and the top of the key.

Breakers head coach Paul Henare says Loe adds variety to the Breakers' offence.

"He is a bit different, I really like the mix in terms of the bigs we are putting together, with Pledge in the centre position and with Mika of course, but Rob is a genuine shooting big which we haven't had since Gary Wilkinson played for the club.

They allow you to do different things offensively, the other thing I like about Rob is his basketball IQ is very high, he is a good passer, good decision maker and defensively he plays very well, he is a solid reliable guy who will always do a good job for you."

While Loe will be able to provide value on offence, there will be defensive questions raised, with the Westlake Boys High product a below-average rebounder and rim protector for his size and position.

However, Loe's size combined with his local status will be a valuable asset for Henare.

"When I got the Breakers role he was someone who I thought could help our team and our club," says Henare.

"The bonus is he has come through our junior programme, he is local and a Kiwi. They are all bonus material to me, but the fact is he is a very good player, an experienced player and someone who will help our group straight away."

Loe is excited to return to a role with a core of players he is familiar with.

"I played one year with Tom and two with Corey so it will be cool to be back on the old stomping ground but it is credit to the Breakers, they helped with my development and it will definitely be good to be back.

"I follow the Aussie league a bit, I have had a few team mates who have played in Australia, Brian Conklin, Jordair Jett, Cody Ellis - so it will be a great experience to come back. It is a slightly different style to Europe but it is basketball, it will be fun.

Loe will join up with the Breakers once the Tall Blacks' campaign concludes.

New Zealand Breakers 2016/2017 roster: Mika Vukona, Tom Abercrombie, Corey Webster, Kirk Penney, Alex Pledger, Finn Delany, Shea Ili, Rob Loe

- NZ Herald

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