Manchester Giants have filled their third American import slot with the signing of small forward Torry Butler.
Butler, 22, is renowned for his rebounding and can cover multiple positions. He joins fellow Americans Mike McCall Jr and Willie Clayton on coach Danny Byrne’s roster for the 2018/19 season, which gets underway in September.
He said: “I’m ready for the season now, I’m so excited. I’ve talked to the other new guys a lot already and have got to know them and learned about their basketball history.
“Coach has told me how he wants the programme to run, the type of player he wants and that how I play fits in with that.
“I’m looking forward to turning it around for Manchester Giants and come over and do big things.”
Butler started his college career with Missouri-based Three Rivers Raiders in NJCAA Division 1, where he averaged 13 points, 8 rebounds and 2 assists per game in his second year, including a massive 15 points and 17 rebounds as his team slipped to a narrow defeat in the Region 16 Tournament semi-finals in 2015. He was a first-team all-conference and all-region selection that year.
From there he headed to NCAA Division 1 Sam Houston State Bearkats, in Texas, graduating in 2017. In two seasons in the Southland Conference he averaged 7 points and 6 rebounds per game, leading his team in the latter category while playing 20 minutes per outing. He had 16 double-figure scoring games, 11 with double-figure rebounds, and 6 double-doubles, reaching the Southland Conference semi-finals in both of his seasons with the Bearkats.
Butler’s rookie professional campaign was with BBC Bascharage Hedgehogs in Luxembourg last season, where he averaged 20 points and 9 rebounds per game.
Danny Byrne said: “We first scouted Torry last summer and admired everything about his game, but just couldn’t fit him into our plans at the time. When it became apparent that we were looking for someone in this spot, we knew exactly where to go and didn’t hesitate for a second. We’ve basically been watching him for over a year!
“Torry brings so much to this team in a variety of areas, and may have one of the most important roles as we’ll be expecting so many different things from him at both ends of the court. He can score inside and out, likes to run the floor and is a big-time rebounder and defender. He’s the youngest in our main rotation, but has the attitude and determination to step up to this challenge.
“One of the things that has impressed me most about Torry is the character he shows in big games. At both Three Rivers and Sam Houston State some of his best performances came in tough Conference Tournament defeats. One of the clinchers for us was watching his outstanding performance against New Orleans in the Southland Conference semi-final, where he had four extremely difficult and very different match-ups and was an inspiration for his team in such a big game.”
Butler will arrive with fellow new recruits McCall Jr, Clayton and Croatian Vlatko Granic in the next couple of weeks to start pre-season, leading up to the first run out against USA Select on Sunday September 2 (5pm).
Tickets are now on sale for the two pre-season home fixtures, and these are included within the season ticket package, which is still also on sale. CLICK HERE to find out more or call 0161 747 2485.