The Japanese B.League is seeing an increase in foreign managers. A whopping 11 out of 24 teams have foreign managers. The Mikawa Shihosuzu is one of them. Mikawa stepped down at the end of last season after Kimikaze Suzuki, who had been in charge of the team for 24 years, since 2000. The new head coach is Ryan Richman, a former NBA coach.
Born in 1989, Richman started as a video coordinator for the NBA’s Washington Wizards in 2013 and became an assistant coach in the 2018-2019 season. He then spent the 2019-2020 season as a head coach with the Wizards’ G League affiliate, the Capital City Go-Go, before being called up by head coach Wes Unseld Jr. to serve again as an assistant coach in Washington for the 2020-2021 season.
As he continued his coaching career in the NBA, he received an offer from the reorganized Mikawa. “I thought it was a great opportunity for me to get some head coaching experience in a different league,” says Richman. The terms of the contract were good. Most importantly, I knew that the B.League is a fast-growing league in the world, which made it even more attractive. It was a chance for me and the team to grow together, and that’s why I signed Mikawa.”
Mikawa, which replaced all of its foreign players except for Devonte Gardner, took a cautious approach to recruiting for the Asian quarter and decided to sign Lee Dae-sung. Shinshu, which had Yang Jae-min, also tried to sign Lee Dae-sung, but Lee chose Mikawa, which had Richman as its coach.
“I watched Lee Dae-sung play in the KBL with the national team. I thought he was a scorer who could score both on-ball and off-the-ball. He also had strengths in one-on-one defense. What stood out the most was his fearlessness in his play, and that’s what I liked the most.”
Mikawa played a scrimmage with the Seoul Samsung on the 12th. Lee scored 17 points in 33 minutes as the starting shooting guard/small forward. Unlike in Korea, where he often played with the ball, Mikawa found open spots, caught passes to score, and attacked one-on-one when the team’s offense was stymied.
Coach Richman said, “I’ve seen Lee play as a ball handler in Korea on film. He is an incredible scorer who can also create shots off the ball. He will be a special scorer for our team. Once the team system is settled, Lee will also be given a ball-handling role. For now, we will utilize him as a scorer and shooter.”온라인바카라
As Richman prepares for his first season in Japan, his goal is to win the B.League title.
“The goal is to eventually become a champion. But for now, we need time. We are in the process of rebuilding and coloring our team. There will be trial and error, and it’s important for the players and coaching staff to settle in and challenge themselves. I’m enjoying the moment because I’m working with a good staff, good coaches and good players. I’m looking forward to the challenge of the new season with them and I think we’re going to be a good team.”