Basketball: Holmes happy to be back at the Sharks

Sharks BJ Holmes in action last season
Sharks BJ Holmes in action last season
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Sharks point guard BJ Holmes says it’s ‘better late than never’ for his return to the club yesterday.

The American from Houston, Texas, arrived in the morning and by the afternoon was training with his new teammates.

It won’t take Holmes long to get used to the Sharks squad with many of the players being the same as last season. And he also played against shooting guard Jeremie Simmons while the pair were playing in college.

Holmes said: “It’s good to be back over here.

“Better later than never, I’d say but I’m here earlier than I was last season anyway!”

The 5’11” Holmes had a major impact last year when he arrived in Sheffield in November.

He quickly gave the Sharks a presence at point guard and struck up an excellent understanding with Nick Lewis in the backcourt.

The highlight of his 2012/13 campaign was a Most Valuable Player performance in the 71-69 BBL Trophy final victory over treble-winners Leicester Riders in Glasgow.

Holmes scored the winning points from the free throw line with 10 seconds to play as part of his 25 points in the match.

Despite interest in the summer from both the Sharks and Holmes in securing a deal an agreement couldn’t be reached and Brian Barbour was brought in by coach Atiba Lyons.

However, Barbour had to return to America before the season began due to a family issue and speculation quickly mounted that Holmes would be the man to replace him.

“I’ve been playing a lot of pick-up basketball, but I still need to get my fitness back,” Holmes said. “This week without a match will be useful to do that.

“I had interest from a club in Holland but I’m pleased to be here with the Sharks.”

Sharks should have played London Lions tonight but have had to re-schedule the match because of a karate tournament at the English Institute of Sport.