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Abercrombie, Jackson named in All-NBL team

Published: 6:51AM Tuesday March 27, 2012 Source: ONE Sport

  • Cedric Jackson (Source: Getty Images)
    Cedric Jackson - Source: Getty Images

The National Basketball League has unveiled its All-NBL Teams at the 2012 MVP awards ceremony at Melbourne's Crown Casino in Melbourne last night, with New Zealand Breakers Tom Abercrombie and Cedric 'Action' Jackson, Sydney King Julian Khazzouh, Perth's Kevin Lisch and Gold Coast's Mark Worthington all named to the All-NBL First Team.

Lisch led all votegetters with 70 votes, while Jackson and Khazzouh polled 68 each. Worthington and Abercrombie received 54 votes apiece.

Lisch was a standout for Perth this season and led the league in scoring with an average of 17.6 points per game. He also averaged 3.6 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 1.1 steals per outing.

And a glance down the individual awards would suggest it was the Perth Wildcats, and not the Breakers, who were the league's dominant team.

The West Australian club claimed three of the main individual awards, including league MVP which went to their southpaw point guard Lisch.

Lisch's 105 votes on the cumulative count saw him shade Cairns guard Jamar Wilson (97) and Sydney centre Julian Khazzouh (94) for the top honour. The Breakers' Jackson came in fourth on 86 votes.

Jackson made his NBL debut this season with the Breakers and instantly electrified the competition. Jackson led the NBL in both assists (6.4 per game) and steals (2.5) and flirted with a triple-double on numerous occasions. He also had season averages of 12.7 points and 6.0 rebounds.

Following the departure of star New Zealand guard Kirk Penney, Thomas Abercrombie took his game to another level. Abercrombie averaged 15.4 points, 4.9 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game as he helped the Breakers keep on winning.

The Blaze relied heavily on Mark Worthington this season and the star forward didn't disappoint. He averaged 14.8 points, 6.2 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 1.0 steals to power Gold Coast to a playoff berth.

It is a measure of the dominance of Sydney's Khazzouh that despite missing a number of games due to injury and an NBA trial with the Golden State Warriors, he still received selection to the All-NBL First Team. Khazzouh led the NBL in rebounds (10.8) and blocked shots (2.1) as well as averaging 16.4 points and 1.7 assists.

The All-NBL Second Team consisted of Jamar Wilson of Cairns (53 votes), Gold Coast's Adam Gibson (48), Cameron Tragardh of Melbourne (47), New Zealand's Gary Wilkinson (45) and Peter Crawford of Townsville (40).

Meawnehile, Andrej Lemanis of the New Zealand Breakers won the NBL Lindsay Gaze Trophy as Coach of the Year .

Lemanis polled 53 votes to narrowly take out the award from Aaron Fearne of the Cairns Taipans on 50 votes. Paul Woolpert of the Townsville Crocodiles came third on 23 votes and Rob Beveridge of Perth fourth on 22.

A former NBL role player, Lemanis led the Breakers to their maiden title last year but controversially finished second to Trevor Gleeson (then of Townsville) in polling for the coaching honours.

After guiding the Breakers to their second straight minor premiership with a 21-7 record during the 2011/12 regular season however Lemanis has managed to break though for his first win of the Lindsay Gaze Trophy.

Lemanis' Breakers were ladder leaders for much of the season, and established themselves as one of the NBL's best teams on both ends of the floor.

Lemanis becomes the 24th man in NBL history to win the Lindsay Gaze Trophy and the first New Zealand Breakers leader to be so honoured.

The Lindsay Gaze Trophy for NBL Coach of the Year award takes into account regular season performances only, and is voted on by head coaches, assistant coaches (one per club) and team captains (one per club) on a 3-2-1 basis. Balloters are unable to vote for members of their own club.

The NBL's Coach of the Year award is named after Melbourne Tigers legendary coach Lindsay Gaze, who led the Tigers to two titles and was head coach of the club 651 games over 22 seasons.

All-NBL First Team

Kevin Lisch (Perth)
Cedric Jackson (NZ)
Julian Khazzouh (Sydney)
Mark Worthington (Gold Coast)
Tom Abercrombie (NZ)

All-NBL Second Team

Jamar Wilson (Cairns)
Adam Gibson (Gold Coast)
Cameron Tragardh (Melbourne)
Gary Wilkinson (NZ)
Peter Crawford (Townsville)

All-NBL Third Team

Daniel Johnson (Adelaide)
Eddie Gill (Townsville)
Damian Martin (Perth)
Adris Deleon (Gold Coast)
Jesse Wagstaff (Perth)