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Crocs sign import center Mickell Gladness
Thursday, June 12, 2014, 04:56:11 PM

The Townsville McDonald’s Crocodiles are thrilled to announce the signing of 27 year-old, 211cm import centre Mickell Gladness for the coming 2014/15 National Basketball League Season.

Gladness joins the Crocs after playing last season in the NBA D-League with the Reno Bighorns. In 40 games, Gladness put up averages of 7.9 points, 6.2 rebounds and most notably 1.9 blocked shots per game.

During his professional career, Gladness has also played for NBA teams including the Miami Heat, Orlando Magic and Golden State Warriors. During his time with Golden State he saw a career high in points with 14 against the San Antonio Spurs in 2012.

“We think Mickell is a perfect fit for us. Speaking to a lot of the guys who know him around the NBA, he is spoken of very highly. He is from a small town, a small market and that is the type of environment he is joining. We wanted someone who could fit into our community environment and team culture and Mickell ticks all those boxes,” Crocodiles coach Shawn Dennis said.

“We did a robust evaluation of Mickell and we’re very happy to be bringing him to our club. I know we have locked him in quite early in the off-season but sometimes when the right guy comes along it just makes sense to secure the deal and start building towards the season ahead.”

Known for his interior presence on defense throughout his career, Gladness made history while suiting up for Alabama A&M in college.

Gladness broke the record for blocks in an NCAA game when he swatted away 16 shots against Texas Southern on February 24, 2007.

In the same season, Gladness led the entire NCAA in blocked shots with a total of 188 in 30 games, coming to an amazing average of 6.27 blocks per contest.

“Our defence needed to be more intimidating and Mickell will provide that. He will bring a whole new meaning to our defence and allow us to better match up on the other teams in the NBL. We are bringing in someone that the NBL hasn’t seen the likes of as a defensive Big Man since Simon Dwight,” Dennis said.

“This signing, for this club and the NBL is huge. He is going to bring some serious excitement. He will feature on plenty of highlight reels this season. We showed last season how good we can be in transition with the likes of Norton and Blanchfield. Adding someone like Mickell will really add a new dimension to that.”

“These are exciting times for the Crocs. Today we announced our new home court at Townsville RSL Stadium and it reminds me of the days of playing in front of smaller, packed out stadiums, when coming to Townsville was a nightmare for the opposition. With a drawcard like Mickell in our squad that is only going to make it even better for our fans.”

Gladness joins an already strong core consisting of Steve Markovic, Todd Blanchfield, Mirko Djeric, Jacob Holmes and Mitch Norton.

He will join the Townsville McDonald’s Crocodiles in early September.

Mickell Gladness Bio:

Name: Mickell Jawaun Gladness
Age: 27
Height: 211cm (6’11)
Position: Center
College: Lawson State CC (2004-2005), Alabama A&M (2005-2008)
Pro Career:

• Matrixx Magix Nijmegen, Netherlands (2008-2009)
• Rio Grande Valley Vipers, NBA D-League (2009-2011)
• Dakota Wizards, D-League (2011)
• Miami Heat, NBA (2011-2012)
• Golden State Warriors, NBA (2012)
• Santa Cruz Warriors, D-League (2012-13)
• Reno Bighorns, D-League (2013-14)