THE man they called 'Big Liu' and the best player in Hong Kong today comprise the roster of the Bay Area Dragons set to see action in the PBA Commissioner's Cup. Chinese national team mainstay Liu Chuanxing teams up with Duncan Reid as they spearhead the foundation of the Dragons team being assemble by Australian national coach Brian Goorjian.
Aside from their mid-season stint in Asia's first ever play-for-pay league, the Dragons are also preparing for their campaign in the East Asia Super League (EASL) set for an October 12 inaugural for its new home-and-away format.
The 7-foot-5 Liu was signed as a development player by the Brisbane Bullets in the Australian National Basketball League, becoming the tallest personnel to play in the history of the league.
He averaged 2.9 points and 1.7 rebounds in the NBL where he earned the moniker 'Big Liu.'
The 22-year-old center is a member of the Chinese national team and played during the 2020 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament and the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup qualifiers.
Expected to be his frontcourt partner is the 6-foot-9 Reid, considered the best player in Hong Kong SAR who owns five championship in the Hong Kong A1 Division.
Reid once played in the country as part of the Hong Kong national team that saw action in the 2013 FIBA Asia Men's Championship.
The eight other players named so far by the Dragons under coach Brian Goorjian are China national team youth and 3x3 player Zhang Zhiyuan, guard Kobey Lam of NCAA Division 1 school University of Charleston, former Hong Kong scoring champion Scotty Ewing, Song Jianhua, Zheng Qilong, Glen Yang, Si Kun, and Qiao Wenhan.
"We're building this team to be competitive right off the bat. Ultimately, our goal is to win games and establish a string culture that will allow the players to excel and sharpen their skills against the best competition the region has to offer," said Goorjian, the six-time Australia National Basketball League (NBL) champion who steered Australia to its first ever podium finish in the Olympics by bagging the bronze medal in last year's Tokyo Games. (RG)
(Photo credits to: PBA)