Welcome Back Jack Lopez


The McDonald’s Rockhampton Rockets are excited to announce the signing of sharp shooting utility Jack Lopez for the 2018 QBL season.

Lopez had an instant impact for the Rockets in 2017 when he arrived mid-season off the back of a successful College career with the Montana Grizzlies. He quickly established himself as one of the most dangerous three point shooters in the league, scoring at an incredible 46% from beyond the arc before an ankle injury impacted his play in the latter half of the year.

Rockets coach Neal Tweedy highlights the way in which Lopez carried himself through the injury as one of the reasons why he was such a priority signing. “Most people wouldn’t be aware of what Jack did for us last season. He was in a moon boot during the week, and then pushing through pain during games just to get us into the finals” Tweedy explained.

It’s something that Lopez touches on when discussing why he was so keen to return to Rockhampton, despite strong interest from other clubs. “Towards the end of the year my preparation each week was impacted by the injury. I was just trying to get through the week. I was essentially playing on one leg, and my game suffered” said Lopez. “I’m excited to come back and show the fans that I’m better than I was last year”.

Lopez is now fully fit and has never been hungrier for success, training four times a week with the Sydney Kings, on top of individual skill workouts with his brother who is the Director of Coaching at Bankstown.

“Right now it’s just about getting more consistent with my shot, and further developing my ball-handling and finishing skills so that I have another aspect to my game” Lopez explained.

Lopez brings further flexibility to the Rockets roster with size and skillset that allows him to play anywhere from the 2-4 positions. “We regard him as a Utility in that sense” says Tweedy. “He’s a really intelligent basketballer which allows him to easily move between different positions. As a knock down shooter that makes him even dangerous because the defense can’t find a rhythm as to where his shots are coming from”.

With three signings now complete, there is a growing enthusiasm within the program regarding what’s possible in 2018. The Rockets finished last season as strong as any other team, and with a core part of the program confirming their return and the addition of league leading scorer Ray Willis, hopes will be high for another successful campaign.

The program will now go into shutdown over the Christmas period with the U23 Rockets and Cyclones Academy teams set to start their preseason’s in January, which will flow onto pre-season QBL games in early April.

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