In the biggest game of the Launceston Basketball Association season, the league will bid an emotional farewell to one of its stars in Sejr Deans.
The key playmaker is set to play his final LBA game when the City Rockets and South East Launceston Devils face-off in the men's grand final on Wednesday night.
Deans was signed as the Tasmania JackJumpers' first ever players ahead of their debut season getting underway later this year.
Rockets coach Brett Smith paid tribute to his star scorer after their two years together.
"No one works harder than Sejr off the court, he's in the gym every day, he's on the basketball court shooting every day, trying to improve his game ... he does everything he can to make his game better," he said.
Deans was contemplative ahead of suiting up for the Rockets one last time.
"It's been awesome, I've only played for the Rockets for two years but, you know, the culture here is unbelievable," he said.
"Any other local club team, I haven't been able to experience a culture like it.
"I think Brett's done a good job of bringing everyone together and we do stuff off-court which helps."
[Sejr's] just a fantastic young man, not just in the way he goes about his basketball but also his life.- Brett Smith
Deans said the LBA had been crucial for his development as a player.
"It's been good to play it over the past few years, being young and getting to play against older experienced men, it's been great for my development," he said.
However, once the whistle goes all focus will be on the Devils and Rockets as they compete for the LBA's biggest prize.
Devils' in-form scorer Lachlan Cocker will be a key focus for the Rockets after he dropped 36 points in the preliminary final against Southside Rebels.
"If we can't stop him we won't win the game, Lachie is shooting the ball terrific for the Devils," Smith said.
"Other players will have to do their job as well, to put the ball in the hole, play good defence, while their focus will be on stopping Sejr, ours will be on stopping Lachie."
Cocker said his team was ready to take on the youthful Rockets side, which has a plethora of attacking talent.
"[We're] nervous but excited as well just gotta stop their main two scorers and play from there I guess," he said.
"They've got some really good players in that team that step up night in, night out."
The Rockets are chasing back-to-back titles in the LBA after they tasted premiership success last year in Smith's first year as coach.
"So it's gonna be really exciting, it's going to be the experience, big bodied veterans of the Devils against our young men," he said.
Do you know someone who is contributing to Northern Tasmanian sport, whether through participating or assisting?
The Examiner's Junior Sports Awards, sponsored by Woolworths, provide acknowledgement of accomplishments by players, coaches, volunteers, teams and clubs across the region.
Nominations are open from Wednesday, April 14, and will close at midnight on October 4.
Entries must include a photograph of the entrant.
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