Lions hope Nuno will be numero uno

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PORTUGUESE star Nuno Pedroso has become MK Lions’ third signing for the new British Basketball League season, and coach Mike New is hoping he’ll be the man to plug his side’s defensive leak.

A 6ft 2in guard, Pedroso won’t be the biggest player on the floor next season, but the 32-year-old arrives at Winterhill from the Portuguese league with a big reputation for putting it about at the back of the court.

Last season saw Nuno average 15 points, 6.5 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game for his team Barcelos Hotel Terco team, and New was naturally delighted to announce his new signing,

“Nuno ticks all the boxes we need to upgrade our back court. He’s a poised veteran leader who wins on every team, in every country he plays in,” he said.

“He has deadly range on his three point shot and makes plays in crunch time, no matter if it’s for himself or a team-mate. Also, similar to Stefan Gill, Nuno prides himself on his defence and is used to defending import guards, at a high level of basketball.

“We’re very excited to have Nuno, but likewise Nuno is excited to be a Lion, he has made contact with his team-mates and can’t wait to get started with the team. It’s exactly this type of leadership and enthusiasm that is infectious within teams and it’s exactly what I’m looking for from my veterans.”

Nuno visited the Lions Arena earlier this week after putting pen to paper for the 2011/12 season, and was impressed by the club’s set-up. He met staff and reminisced about his old friend Tommie Eddie who was also a Lion and with whom he won the Portuguese Cup while playing together at Vitoria.

Lions chief executive Vince Macaulay heralded Pedroso’s arrival as a superb signing, and is now hoping to unearth another gem before Lions play their first friendly games in late August.

“We’ve beaten off European teams to get Nuno and his calibre of player will raise the bar at our club and in the BBL as a whole,” he said. “He’s going to become quite a fans’ favourite.”

Pedroso joins Stefan Gill and Daniel Northern on this year’s roster with more signings due to be announced shortly.

Macaulay added: “Now we’re hoping to sign up another very exciting player if we can persuade him MK is better than Mexico.”

>> Lions’ Parish Sessions for ages 6-16 are taking place in the coming weeks and are absolutely free. For dates and locations, see www.mklions.com