By Michael Kennedy
The St. John's Edge welcome a familiar foe to the Mile One Centre this week with a pair of games versus the Moncton Magic. For the Magic, winners of five straight, it's steady as she goes. They sit atop the NBL Canada standings with a stellar record of 12-2 and have shown no signs of slowing down coming off last season's championship run. Meanwhile, the Edge come in on a bit of a streak of their own having won five of their last six and currently sit in 2nd Place in the Atlantic Division.
According to head coach Steven Marcus, the Edge see these games as a huge opportunity to not only keep pace with the league's top team but to establish themselves as legitimate contenders heading into the stretch run. St. John's is led by guard Junior Cadougan and welcome back a familiar face to the lineup with the recent signing of season one sensation, Coron Williams. Williams, known for his silky smooth stroke from the arc and ability to attack the rim, re-signed with the Edge last week having recently completed his season in Mexico. Coach Marcus added, "It's fantastic to have Coron back. He adds even more veteran leadership to our locker room and is exactly the type of guy we want in our organization, both on and off the court." St. John's also announced today that they have placed guard Ryan Richardson on Inactive Reserve(family) as he is currently away from the team. Ryan and his wife Ashlynn welcomed their baby boy, Kentavious Jamal Richardson, this past Sunday. The entire Edge family congratulates Ryan and Ashlynn on this momentous occasion.
The Magic are coming off a win Sunday in Charlottetown versus the Island Storm. In what was a fast-paced, back and forth battle the Magic leaned on their veteran lineup in the 4th quarter to secure the victory. The Magic roster features a prominent name for Edge fans. Desmond Lee, a recent addition to the Magic squad, returns to St. John's for the first time as a member of the visiting team. Lee was a stalwart of the Edge lineup for the past two seasons and quickly became a fan favourite of the Mile One faithful with his hard-nosed work ethic and tenacious defence. Meanwhile, Magic guard Jeremiah Mordi is playing at an absurdly high level. Shooting 60.5% from beyond the arc while averaging 16.4 points, 6.7 boards and 4.8 assists per game.
I spoke to Moncton's head coach, Joe Salerno, shortly after his arrival in St. John's and he said, "They are a very deep team. A lot of talented guys you have to account for. It really can be a different 2-3 players that hurt you any given night. They are a well-rounded ball club, on both ends of the floor. Always a tough test for us, especially here on the rock." When asked about the addition of Lee to the team Salerno had this to say, "Dez, in my opinion, is one of the best two-way players in the league. He is a lockdown defender, and has the ability to score in multiple ways."
Game one gets underway 7:00 PM Tuesday at the Mile One Centre while the second tilt goes Wednesday evening at the same time. Fans are encouraged to come out and join the Edge organization as we welcome Desmond Lee back to St. John's and honour him before Tuesday's game. Tickets can be purchased online at www.mileonecentre.com, by phone at (709)576-7657 or by visiting the Mile One Centre Box Office.