EABL Player of the Week – 25 January 2023

The latest race for EABL Player of the Week was a close run thing, with a number of performances that could have taken the honour.

After considering Jason Holder’s 31 efficiency outing for Sheffield against BMET, and Tyler Fairbairn’s 26 points against Oaklands, the choice was made to go with Derby’s Ben Hooper as this week’s winner.

Hooper led the way for the Trailblazers to knock off a strong SGS programme, doing his bit to help Derby win 116-79.

Finishing with 19 points on an efficient 50% shooting, Hooper also added 10 boards for the double-double alongside three assists and a pair of blocks.

His final efficiency rating of 25 was impressive, and he limited himself to just two turnovers across the contest.

Speaking about the award, Hooper said: “This win was so important to our team as the last game against SGS was very close, intense and created a fierce rivalry for us.

“We came into the game with 100% energy and maintained it throughout the contest which I think was very important for us to secure the win.

“The passion I had going into the game along with my teammates support pushed me to play at a higher level.

“As for the rest of the season, we have some crucial games coming up which we hope to win so that we can secure a playoff spot and go into the playoffs with good momentum.

“Receiving the Player of the Week award is an honour and I feel it reflects the hard work I’ve been putting in this season.”

Derby head coach Matt Shaw added: “I’m delighted for Ben. He’s having an excellent season and had another strong showing against SGS.

“Ben’s become difficult to stop off the bounce from the perimeter and mid-range, going left or right and is shooting a high percent from the field.

“After a tough year last season with illness and injury it’s been so pleasing to see him get some consistency.”

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