Mad Ants sign former Pacers forward Tyler Hansbrough Team coming off big win at Grand Rapids.
Former Indiana Pacers big man Tyler Hansbrough is on his way to Fort Wayne.
The Mad Ants have signed Hansbrough from the NBA Development League available player pool and will be in uniform when the Ants play Westchester at 7 p.m. Friday at Memorial Coliseum. Hansbrough was scheduled to participate in his first practice with the Mad Ants today.
Hansbrough, 31, a 6-foot-9 power forward out of the University of North Carolina, has played seven seasons in the NBA, most recently with the Charlotte Hornets in 2015-16. His best season came in 2010-11, when he started 29 games for the Pacers and averaged 11 points and 5.2 rebounds per game.
He has been primarily a role player most of his NBA career. He has not played professionally this season.
“He definitely makes us bigger,” Mad Ants coach Steve Gansey said. “He gives us an inside threat, a guy who can really rebound the basketball, set screens and bring toughness to us to go with what we already have.”
Hansbrough was picked No. 13 in the first round by the Pacers in the 2009 NBA Draft.
“I’m looking forward to seeing what kind of shape he’s in and see if he can help us for a playoff push,” Gansey said. “He hasn’t done anything all year, but from people I’ve spoken to, he’s always in good shape and stuff like that. We’ll know after that first practice.”
The Mad Ants are 21-15 heading into the final 14 games of the season, looking to gain on Raptors 905 in the Central Division and earn a playoff berth. The team is heavy on rookies, with seven on the active roster and an eighth (Ben Bentil) on call-up assignment with the Dallas Mavericks.
“I think it will help us in having a bigger guy, and a veteran guy,” Gansey said.
MAD Ants win big at Grand Rapids
Mad Ants rookie Jordan Loyd took over at point guard in spectacular fashion.
With the departure of starter Julyan Stone to Italy, Loyd stepped in and stepped up, posting a double-double with 30 points and 11 assists as the Mad Ants beat the Grand Rapids Drive 136-105 on Wednesday in the DeltaPlex Arena in Grand Rapids, Mich.
Loyd, out of the University of Indianapolis, hit 10 of 19 shots, including 5 of 9 three-pointers, and also had seven rebounds and a steal.
“I think I’ve gotten better pushing the ball and being more controlled, able to set up my teammates better and get them more involved,” Loyd said. “My assists are going up as I’ve been getting my teammates involved, and that’s been the biggest jump for me.”
Travis Leslie scored 29 points and Jarrod Uthoff and Nick Zeisloft scored 20 apiece. Uthoff also had nine rebounds. Trey Mc-Kinney-Jones scored 18 and Stephan Hicks 12. Adam Woodbury led the Ants with 12 rebounds.
Jordan Crawford scored 27 to lead Grand Rapids (20-19). <br>
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