East Circuit Preview: New York Lightning

And just like that, Year X of the Winter Circuit is around the corner. Here, I'll be taking an early look at the Red League teams in the East Coast Circuit. Today, we've got the New York Lightning.



The New York Lightning are looking to make some noise in the East Coast Winter Circuit here in a few weeks. When talking to coach Brandon Banfield, it's going to definitely be a group effort, but Kevin Wheatley Jr. is a player who is going to be leaned on early and often, and a prospect that has the most long-term upside on the roster. "He brings a level of toughness, skill, and athleticism. He can shoot it, he can rebound, and he’s able to push the ball in transition. All of the above. His defense, and he has a basketball build," said Banfield.

However, there's plenty of players on the team expected to contribute, and among them are Skye Ragoo and Infinite Sincere Amen-Ra. Those two are players that the staff expects to take a big step this season due to basketball maturity over the past year. Another is Robert Hill, a young, promising prospect that they believe will surprise some people this winter. 

When identifying X-factors on the squad, there's a couple of players that come to mind for Banfield. "Josue Manya is an X-factor," he said. "He brings toughness. He also protects the paint and does all of the dirty work. Also, with the addition of Dom Mauro, the sky is the limit for this group."

What separates the Lightning from the rest of the field? It's simple in their staff's eyes. “The same thing we bring to the table every year. The coaching experience and the paying attention to detail on the defensive end, not just the offensive end," said Banfield.

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