Getting to know Isaac Humphries
This weekend one of the more anticipated debuts of the season will take place. At the City of Palms event La Porte (Ind.) La Lumiere will have the services of Isaac Humphries for the first time. The very talented native of Australia has been a source of buzz since the FIBA U-17 World Championships, and now he is about to make his debut in the United States. “It is really exciting since this has been a long process and it is finally done and I am here,” said Humphries. La Lumiere assistant coach Brad Johnstin is the one who scouted and helped to get Humphries from Australia to the United States, and he says the big man has all the skills you need to be elite. “He’s a 7-foot and 250 pounder who is really good inside and he is really tough,” said Johnstin. “That is something he prides himself on. He likes contact and creates contact. He has been working on his overall game. He is an exceptional passer, and we are working on his face up game as well.” For his part Humphries says he simply tries to play to his strengths while working on his weaknesses. “The things I do well are pretty much around the basket,” noted Humphries. “I think I have good post moves and I am pretty aggressive. I go hard in the post. I know I can improve my outside game some, and I am working on that as well as my defense.” Humphries does know that he will need to get used to the American style of play, but both Johnstin and Humphries are confident he can get it done. “I think my biggest adjustment will be playing with my head a little bit more,” said Humphries. “In Australia I was able to just use my size and have that advantage. I will have that advantage to an extent here, but now I know I have to think the game more and use my mind as much as my size.” “The consistent athleticism and the length from the players who aren’t guarding him will probably be his biggest adjustment,” said Johnstin. “Just the way the power forwards and small forwards can come in and be that second defender will probably be an adjustment for him since you don’t see that in Australia.” Johnstin continued, “(Humphries) handled it pretty well in Dubai at the World Championships pretty well against high-major guys, so he has some experience with it and did fine, but I do think it will be an adjustment for him.” According to Humphries the experience he had in Dubai has indeed helped him get some understanding of what this season will be like on a nightly basis. “Playing against the American team at the World Championships gave me knowledge of their game that I didn’t have before,” said Humphries. “I now have a tiny idea of how the style of play is, but there is always room for improvement. That is why I am here. I want to learn the American system.” Over the course of the next month, La Lumiere is going to take on some of the top teams and players in the country. Johnstin says integrating Humphries into what is already a very talented team won’t be a problem, and that things are going very well. “I think it is pretty uncommon for a team to add someone who I think is one of the best players in the world,” said Johnstin. “A lot of teams could struggle when a new piece comes in like that, but his personality fits in perfectly with our guys. I think that is the most important thing. Culture wise we are at another level compared to other teams, and he fits right in with our culture.” With that in mind, Humphries says he is simply ready to get going and show people in America what he can do, and that begins with facing off against five-star class of 2016 center Udoka Azubuike. “I am hoping to do really well in these upcoming games. I will be so excited to get out there,” said Humphries. “The names I am going against really don’t mean anything to me, so I am just going to go for it.”
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