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London Lions make Lovell Cook their latest signing

New London Lions signing Lovell Cook (right) during his time playing for the University of New Orleans. New London Lions signing Lovell Cook (right) during his time playing for the University of New Orleans.

Thursday, August 28, 2014
10:28 AM

Head coach Vince Macaulay has added forward Lovell Cook to his London Lions roster ahead of the 2014/15 season.

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The 6ft 7ins American has been a standout player with the University of New Orleans basketball team, leading them in scoring his last two seasons in college.

The 23-year-old forward will bring a lot of versatility to the Lions team, having averaged 14 points and four rebounds a game as the captain of his side as they adapted to Division 1 basketball in his final year there.

Macaulay said: “Lovell is a player I feel is tailor made for the BBL, he can play in the post, play outside, shoot the jumper and guard every position on the floor, I have seen him play first hand this summer and love his game and his energy. He reminds me of long time BBL favourite Rico Alderson on the floor.”

Cook makes London his first stop in his professional career having missed out last season, though playing ABA basketball whilst seeking an opportunity.

He said: “I’m very excited about this opportunity, Coach has told me about the Lions at the Copper Box Arena and I’m excited to meet the fans and my team-mates in pre-season.”

A native of New Orleans playing for his local college, but while in high school Cook had been an evacuee from Hurricane Katrina and had to move to Georgia. After his return to New Orleans he skippered the side for two seasons and his 54 per cent field goal shooting saw him in the top 50 in the US.

However, Lions fans will have to wait a little longer to see their new players at the Copper Box after their pre-season game against Polish champions Turow on September 6 was cancelled due to visa problems for the visitors.

A statement on the Lions’ website read: ‘The PGE Turow team has four Serbian players and a Serbian coach and they have just been informed that they will not receive their Visa’s in time to travel to the UK. The Turow team are not prepared to travel and play without these players and coach.

‘Gabriela Grzyb of Turow explained: “We had travelled to the British Embassy in Warsaw on Monday only to find that our appointments had been cancelled due to a Public Holiday and rescheduling of the next appointments would not happen in time for our trip to London, we are very sorry for all basketball fans and for the losses incurred both by us for our flights etc and for the Lions in setting up this game.”

‘Lions boss Vince Macaulay commented: “It is very sad that we can’t host Turow for our planned friendly, due to these unforeseen circumstances. We had put so much in place, however we will contact all concerned, all fans that have purchased tickets will have those tickets honoured for our first home game of the new season against Bristol Flyers on Friday the 3rd of October.’

That means the first home game of the season will be in the BBL on Friday, October 3, when they take on league newcomers Bristol Flyers at the Copper Box Arena at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

The London Lions will play a pre-season game away against the Essex Lepoards on September 9 before the regular campaign starts on September 26 with their BBL curtain-raiser at Surrey United.

Season tickets are also available and give fans the opportunity to choose their own seat for the season as well as exclusive access to many activities involving the team.

For further information on the London Lions, visit www.londonlionsbasketball.com. Tickets are available for all London Lions games at www.ticketmaster.co.uk.

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