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P L A Y E R   F I L E
5 Derek Rucker
Position: Guard
Born: 02/10/66
Height: 184cm
Weight: 80kg
Nickname: Pocket Rocket



PROFILE

Derek Rucker is reguarded as one of the most talented imports to ever come to Australia and that reputation is deserved. He Came over in 1990 to play for the Brisbane Bullets, in short he blew everyone away. He was really the first od the new breed of atheletic guards who can run, jump, pass and shoot the lights out. And because nobody had seen anyone like him, nobody could stop him. He led Brisbane in Thrre point percentage (43%), Free throw percentage (84%), assists (222), Points (1088 at 33ppg) and won the Bullets M.V.P award. He had Brisbane team records in, points, assist, 3pt made and steals. He took the Bullets to the Finals where they came agonisingly close to winning it all, but they were beaten at home by the Perth Wildcats. However Derek Rucker won the 1990 M.V.P award and resigned with the Brisbane Bullets for the 1991 season. Another brilliant season followed, Rucker averaged 27ppg, totalled 145 steals and shot 40% from the three point line. These numbers weren't a scratch on the previous season's averages and a mid season fall out with coach Brian Kerle, left both parties seeking a seperation. Rucker left and played in Europe and England before returning to Australia in 1994 to play with the Newcastle Falcons. Rucker fitted right in and teamed up with defensive player of the year Terry Dozier. The two both had great seasons, Rucker averages 25ppg and 10apg. He also averaged just under 3 steals per game. After his season in Newcastle Rucker decided to move North and take up a position for the struggling Suns. Rucker immediatly stepped in and took over becoming the teams leader and point guard. He perhaps even had a better season than 1990 when he won the M.V.P award. He came second to Andrew Gaze in scoring (30.3ppg), and 2nd to Gaze in M.V.P voting. He also tallied 8.3 assists and 2.3 steals per game, ranking thied in both categories. He has stayed consistent in 1996 and 1997 chalenging Andrew Gaze for the scoring title and M.V.P award in both seasons but losing in both to Gaze. One of the reasons for his success in 1996 and 1997 was the signing of import centre/foward Clarence Tyson. The two complemented each other very well and although it didn't convert to the highest averages of Ruckers career it did make the Suns win games. They narrowly missed out of the Play offs after dropping the last six games of the seasons when Tyson went down injured. Tyson is replaced this season by Ray Owes. Owes will fill the gap and provide a little more size than Tyson, but one thing will stay the same, Rucker will have another great season.

ACHIEVMENTS
Won the 1990 M.V.P award
Led the NBL in scoring in 1990
Won the Bullets M.V.P award in 1990


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