Greensboro Swarm ready for second season
In 2015 the Charlotte Hornets introduced the Greensboro Swarm to the G league of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Initially, the minor league for the NBA was recognized as the National Basketball Development League from 2001-2005 then the NBA Development League from 2005-2017. It is now entitled ‘The G League’ as part of a multi-year deal with Gatorade. The league consists of 26 teams across the country that is ultimately competing to gain a spot in the NBA. The Greensboro Swarm had their first season last year (2016-2017) and ended with a record of 19-31 overall. Under the influence of their head coach Noel Gillespie, the Swarm is looking to have a promising season.
After losing a majority of their players from the previous season, the Greensboro Swarm are back and ready to jump-start their season this coming Saturday. “The toughest part for me is you’re implementing a new system for players coming from multiple college systems,” said head coach Gillespie. The Swarm has added eight rookies to their roster this year including Terry Henderson and Cole Huff. Coach Gillespie believes that his team has a high basketball IQ. “We have guys that know how to play the game,” said Gillespie.
Huff is a rookie Small Forward from Creighton University that was drafted in the first round of the ‘G-League Draft’ for the Greensboro Swarm. Henderson is a rookie Shooting Guard from NC State that was initially signed by the Charlotte Hornets. Gillespie recognizes both rookies as sharp shooters that can potentially grow into strong individuals on the court.
“I want to gain valuable experience playing at this level,” said Henderson. “This is my first pro season, so I’m definitely taking it serious. (I) just want to gain the most experience and keep growing as a player as much as I can.” Henderson says he wants to bring athleticism to the court. “My main thing is just going out there having fun, making sure my teammates get involved, and being a leader.”
Transitioning from a college player to a professional player can be a tough time period for a rookie. There are many more rules and regulations in the NBA that players have to become aware of. “In college, you have a longer shot clock so possessions get slowed down and teams run a lot more sets,” said Huff. “So far, at least at training camp, we haven’t done so much of running sets and running particular plays for individuals just yet. It’s more ‘get the ball moving’, and if there’s a mismatch, you’re going to attack it every time.”
The Greensboro Swarm’s opening night will be on this Saturday (November 4th) against the Canton Charge who is the NBA G League affiliate of the Cleveland Cavaliers. The game will
take place at the Greensboro Coliseum Complex Fieldhouse (off of Patterson St). “We have a great home court advantage in this building. Last year, the fans really supported us,” said Head coach Gillespie. “We shouldn’t lose in this building just because of the fan support, the way it’s built, the intimacy. It’s always a goal to take care of our home court.”
To learn more about the Greensboro Swarm and buy tickets to see them face off against the Canton Charge this weekend, visit www.greensboro.gleauge.nba.com.