Just when things were turning around for the Halifax Rainmen, one of their best players is leaving town.
Rob Sanders, one of only four players in the Premier Basketball League averaging a double-double, has signed a lucrative contract with a pro team in Venezuela. Rainmen owner Andre Levingston called the salary “life-changing.”
“Rob discussed the offer with me, and while I want to be selfish and keep him here, there was a lot of money offered and it was a no-brainer,” Levingston said. “The money that was offered was life-changing. You can’t say no to it.”
Levingston compared Sanders’ situation to that of point guard Jermaine Anderson, who starred for the Rainmen early last season before leaving after 20 games to sign in Germany. Anderson went on to play for Canada’s national team.
Sanders, a six-foot-eight forward, was averaging 17.4 points and 10.1 rebounds in 10 games, despite coming off the bench. He averaged 28.2 minutes and battled a variety of injuries.
“Rob is a dominant guy,” Levingston said. “He gets it done. We hate losing him, but he couldn’t say no.”
Levingston pointed out that the Rainmen beat the Vermont Frost Heaves on Sunday with Sanders on the bench for most of the game with an injury. He said he’s looking for a replacement with skills similar to Sanders’ but isn’t in a rush.
“If we bring somebody in, it’s going to be somebody who can help us, not just to fill a roster spot,” he said.
In other Rainmen news, guard/forward Glen Dandridge is hoping to have recovered from an ankle injury that has limited him to just 21 minutes total in his past two games.
The Rainmen, 7-5, host the Detroit Panthers on Friday at 7 p.m. and the Quebec Kebs on Sunday at 2 p.m.
The Montreal Sasquatch are still alive.
The team that was kicked out of the Premier Basketball League last week was reinstated yesterday after being taken over by an ownership group named Soar Enterprises Inc.
The Sasquatch will resume their original schedule and will announce a new roster today. The Halifax Rainmen have two more games against the Sasquatch this season.