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London Lightning return home as members of new Basketball Super League

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The London Lightning are back at home as they play their first home game as a member of the new Basketball Super League (BSL).

Along with the new name, comes a few rule changes designed to increase entertainment.

“It’s more NBA rules,” says Lightning sharpshooter Jermaine Haley.

“If anyone watches NBA it’s a league made for highlights. As fast as it was last year, it will probably be a bit faster this year.”

The BSL contains the four remaining NBL Canada teams, with the addition of Montreal and Newfoundland.

The BSL is owned by former NBL Canada commissioner David Magley and his wife Evelyn.

The London Lightning have joined the six-team Basketball Super League for the 2024 season (Source: Brent Lale/CTV London)“What I like about the league so far has much more to do with the infrastructure actually that has to do with the play,” says Doug Plumb, Lightning head coach. “In the past we’ve had a board of directors. Now David Magley is unilaterally making decisions. We can move faster, for example, we found the timeouts are too long. It’s changed in three days. Whereas you know, in the past things like that just took forever.”

The Lightning have won four of the last five NBLC championships, and are looking to etch their team name on the first BSL trophy.

To help achieve that goal, they’ve brought in NBL Canada Hall of Famer Billy White to play forward.

“London has been nothing but great since I’ve been here,” says White.

“They were always nice when I played against them, and I felt this is the best decision for me.”

Plumb says he’s always been a headache for the Lightning, especially when playing for rival Windsor.

“Last year in game five (of the NBL Championship series), I say to our guys at halftime I said, ‘look, if you guys don’t come out and punch them in the mouth in the third quarter we lose’. Why? Because they have Billly (White).

He’s a little bit older, but at the end of the day, he’s still really good and when you get the ball in the block. It’s an absolute problem. So I’m thrilled to have him here.”

The Lightning started the season with two road losses, but are hoping to turn their season around with their first of 20 games at Budweiser Gardens Saturday night.

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