BY ALEX FAIR (THE ADVOCATE Tall Timbers North-West Thunder coach Sam Armstrong is on the hunt for new import with a family illness forcing Akeem Richmond back to the US.)
Richmond had played all three of the Thunders’ matches this season, averaging 13 points and 4.3 rebounds per game.
The 25-year-old had been with Ulverstone in the NWBU.
He left the state on Tuesday morning.
“He came to us and said he really needed to get home, so we made sure we could make things happen,’’ Thunder president Tony Barker said on Tuesday.
A replacement for Richmond is unlikely ahead of Saturday’s home match at Ulverstone against the Melbourne Tigers, but Barker said conversations were well and truly taking place.
“We’d obviously like to see that happen as soon as possible,’’ he said.
“We have Easter after this week, so that will buy as a bit more time.”
Barker was confident that Armstrong and the playing group would be able to cover the loss of Richmond in the short term.
“You can’t discount what the loss of a player like Akeem can do,’’ Barker admitted.
“Any time there is a change in the playing group there will be an effect, and it will depend on how long it is until we can get him replaced and how we can replace with him, to how long that detrimental effect, assuming it is a detrimental effect, flows on for.”