Magic graced with talented duo

James Waldeck, Jerami and Ricky Grace. Picture: Aaron Kirby
James Waldeck, Jerami and Ricky Grace. Picture: Aaron Kirby

IN A huge coup the Mandurah Magic have re-signed guard Jerami Grace for the 2020 SBL season as well as signing his father, and Wildcats legend, Ricky Grace to the coaching panel.

Jerami joined the Magic late last season after returning home from a stint in the United States playing college basketball.

In his seven games in the SBL, Jerami averaged three rebounds, three assists and 14 points as well as shooting at 37 per cent from beyond the arc.

The 25-year-old is looking forward to getting a full season in with the Magic so he can continue to improve his game but also leave his mark on the team.

“I just want to bring a winning culture to make everybody better and just go hard and work as good as we can,” Jerami said.

“This year I will be there from the beginning so I will get to help more in who we’re going to be and put my print on it.”

Ricky knows a lot about winning cultures and will add a wealth of knowledge to the teams coaching panel.

“I’m excited to be a part of the Mandurah Magic as a coach to assist Aaron Trahair who is a backcourt teammate of mine with the Perth Wildcats in championship years,” he said.

Ricky won four titles with the Cats and was inducted into the Australian Basketball Hall of Fame in 2010.

Watching his son learn and grow as a basketball player has given Ricky an appreciation for good youth programs.

“My motivating factors in joining the Mandurah Magic was a few reasons – I’m very impressed with their strategic plan and the amount of youth that are here that I feel talent is untapped,” he said.

“Mandurah’s one of the largest basketball associations in WA so I’m looking forward to working with the kids and the parents and helping them develop their skills, (especially) the ones that are interested in making it to the next level.

“Jerami and I want to be there to help them do that.”

When asked about what he will focus on as a coach, he answered with one keyword – fundamentals.

“I’m a real stickler for the details for the fundamentals of the game and that’s what I will be focusing on,” he said.

“I’m going to make sure that we’re good at two or three different things, we’re not going be jack of all trades, we’re going to be damn good at two or three different things.”

The Magic will be looking to work their way up the ladder after finishing 13th last season with just six wins.

“I’m going to make sure I practise and go hard everyday and make sure I hold my teammates accountable and make sure I’m doing everything I need to do to win,” Jerami said.

Ricky said he believes Jerami will be twice as good as last SBL season after spending a season in the NBL with the Adelaide 36ers.

“Last year when he came he was coming off a three-month break, but this year when he starts with Mandurah he is going to be coming off a full year of training with the 36ers,” Ricky said.

Jerami is a cool customer and said Mandurah suited him.

“They were very welcoming last year and I didn’t want to sign anywhere else,” Jerami said.

“They treat me like family, so it wasn’t hard to stay here.”