Highly rated NBA prospect Terry Armstrong will become the NBL’s latest Next Star after signing to play for South East Melbourne Phoenix in its inaugural NBL Season.
A 6’6’’ shooting guard from Flint, Michigan, Armstrong had previously committed to Arizona University but has instead decided to kick start his professional career in the NBL.
Armstrong will join the Illawarra Hawks’ LaMelo Ball and the SKY Sport New Zealand Breakers’ RJ Hampton as the latest highly rated NBA prospects who’ve elected to bypass the US college system and play in the NBL
The 18-year-old played his High School basketball at Bella Vista Prep and is rated among the top guard prospects in the US. He is currently number 40 in both the ESPN 2020 mock draft and the ESPN 100 recruits.
In 2018, Armstrong starred in the Nike Elite Youth Basketball League, averaging 20.4 points and 5.3 rebounds, and shot over 45 per cent from the field.
Armstrong’s decision to join Phoenix was announced on ESPN’s The Jump in the US.
Phoenix General Manager Tommy Greer said: “We are very excited to have a player of Terry’s quality join the Phoenix for our first year in the NBL.
“It was important for us to identify a Next Star who could come in and contribute straight away but would also fit our no-nonsense culture.
“Just as exciting he was in a position to choose where he wanted to play and he chose us, which is a big vote of confidence in the culture we are building within our organisation and team.”
Phoenix Head Coach Simon Mitchell said: “I love what I am hearing about his personality and work ethic. I love that he is from Flint, a tough working-class town. He will be at home in South East Melbourne.”
“We are super excited to be working with a young man of his talent and feel like we have great leaders for him to work under who can teach him to be a pro in Madgen, Gibson, Wesley and Creek, it’s the perfect situation for a young man wanting to learn on the job.”
Hungry Jack’s NBL Chief Executive Jeremy Loeliger: “We’re thrilled to welcome Terry to the NBL as our third Next Star for this season.
“Recently we saw Brian Bowen II sign a two way contract with Indiana Pacers after his season with the Sydney Kings as the NBL’s inaugural Next Star.
“To have players of the talent of RJ Hampton, LaMelo Ball and now Terry Armstrong decide they want to play in the NBL is tremendous endorsement of the league and its standing as one of the premier basketball leagues in the world outside of the NBA.”