(Toronto) September 5 - The National Basketball League of Canada board of governors unanimously voted to award the Sudbury Five, who will commence their freshman season in NBL Canada, the protected player list of the former Niagara River Lions, who left the league to pursue other interests.
Sudbury's list of protected players includes:
Jaylon Tate - a 6'3" guard from Illinois; in his rookie season with Niagara, he amassed 13.4 ppg and a 49.1% field goal percentage and was named the 2017-18 Rookie of the Year.
Sam Muldrow - a 6'9" small forward who played collegiately at South Carolina, Muldrow played in all three River Lions' seasons, including finishing with a team-high 3.1 blocks per game average in 2016-17.
Devonta Pollard - a 6'8" forward from Houston, Pollard was a well-traveled veteran, having played in Latvia, Greece and Qatar before arriving in Niagara. In 21 games, he averaged 13.2 points and 5.9 rebounds in 2017-18.
Guillaume Payen-Boucard - one of the top Canadians in the NBLC last season, Payen-Boucard is a 6'6" small forward who played collegiately at Carleton University. He averaged 14.0 ppg and 7.6 rpg for the River Lions in 2017-18.
Dwayne Smith - A 6'6" forward who played at George Washington University, Dwayne Smith is a five-year veteran of the NBLC, playing for the Island Storm, Moncton Miracles and Niagara River Lions during that stretch.
Kris Joseph - a 6'7" small forward who played at Syracuse University, this Montreal native played in the NBA with the Boston Celtics and Brooklyn Nets. In 13 games with the River Lions in 2017-18, he averaged 16.2 ppg, 5.0 rpg and 3.0 assists per game.
After Sudbury received the Niagara protected list, they completed a draft day trade with the Moncton Magic. In that trade, Moncton traded the rights to Juan Pattillo and their first round pick (8th overall) to Sudbury, in exchange for Sudbury's first pick in the first round of the NBL Canada Entry Draft and for future considerations - the future considerations being the rights to Devonta Pollard.