NEW opportunities beckon for Robbie Herndon as he braces for his first full season with the Alaska Aces.
Traded to the Aces from Magnolia Hotshots late last season, the Fil-Am sniper admitted that it took time for him to settle with his new team.
"At first, it's a weird transition because I was used to what was going on at Magnolia," he said.
"To be sent to Alaska at the end of the season, there really was a lot of changes and a lot of those changes came fast. Creating chemistry with other players doesn't come right away especially at the end of a season and right before playoffs."
After an extended offseason, however, Herndon believes that he's gotten a hang of wearing the Alaska uniform as he finds his footing in this new chapter of his career in his third year in the pros.
"Since I've had the chance to practice a lot more and play scrimmages and tune-ups, I would say now that I'm pretty much settled in," he said. "I know how the players on play and they know how I play so it's a lot better now."
And it shows.
Herndon has been tearing it up in the Aces' tune-up games, brandishing his lethal outside sniping and his tenacious on-ball defense.
It only bodes well for him, especially with Alaska looking to go all-in with its youth revolution led by Jeron Teng.
Herndon isn't far behind, with coach Jeff Cariaso sharing with him of his grand plans for the 6-foot-3 swingman moving forward.
Ever since my first day here, coach Jeff told me that I'll have a bigger role. But he just told me to play my game freely, shoot the ball, drive to the basket, create for others, and obviously play defense," the 26-year-old said.
That faith, to Herndon, only brings out the best in him and help Alaska to contend for the playoffs after missing out on the semifinals in all three conferences last season.
"To continue playing both sides of the ball but that I'm free to do more on the offensive end, I'm just happy with that role," he said. "I was pretty much only supposed to shoot threes at Magnolia, but I'm a more capable offensive player than that and coach Jeff wants me to play my game the way how I've always played it." (RL)