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Walker is fifth player to sign for Raiders

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: August 01, 2013

Shane Walker has signed for Plymouth Raiders

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Plymouth Raiders head coach Gavin Love has added 6ft 10in British forward Shane Walker to his 2013-14 line-up.

The 25-year-old from Northampton is Love's fifth of an expected seven senior captures for the forthcoming British Basketball League campaign, which tips off on September 29.

Walker has already had one campaign out of Loyola University, Maryland, playing in Europe. He finished last season making 11 appearances for Matrixx Magixx in Holland's top-flight, following fleeting spells in first Greece and then Cyprus.

It is believed rival BBL clubs were tracking Walker this off-season. Love is delighted to win the race for his signature and add him to guards Gabe Haskins and Donald Robinson, forward Ben Eaves and centre Andreas Schreiber on a new-look roster.

Alongside Walker, all will be second-year professionals in 2013-14 bar Schreiber, who will be in his third year in professional basketball.

"I'm delighted to have Shane join the organisation," said Love, who is set to complete the Raiders' summer rebuild with an American point-guard and American big-man.

"Shane had a stellar college career at Loyola and can really run the floor well.

"Together with his obvious talent for rebounding and blocking shots, he also shot a respectable 35% from the three-point line last year."

In Schreiber and Walker, Love now has two shot-blockers on the team to protect Raiders' basket this season.

"I'm looking forward to joining up with Raiders for pre-season," said Walker. "The team is shaping up nicely. It will be great to get going.

"I can't wait to get my first experience of the Pavilions and the Raiders fans."

With 6ft 8in Eaves at small-forward and also 6ft 9in Schreiber inside, Love will have the ability to go big with a large frontline this season.

Eaves and Walker also boast the ability to step out offensively and hit three-pointers, which promises to stretch opposition defences.

Walker said: "My main focus is winning, so whatever it takes to win, whether it's taking a charge or switching out to a guard [on defence], it really doesn't matter. I just want to win."

Love said: "Last season Shane played in some very good leagues around Europe and gained very valuable experience."

Last season in Holland, Walker averaged 8.1 points, 6.1 rebounds and 0.9 blocks in 18 minutes per game. He shot an exceptional 84% from the foul line and 56% inside.

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