In 2005, Andrew Bogut was selected with the first overall pick of the NBA Draft by the Milwaukee Bucks.
Bogut spent seven seasons in Milwaukee before moving to Golden State, where he won a Championship ring in 2015.
The Australian played for Dallas, Cleveland and Los Angeles after departing the Warriors, but has now chosen to come back home and try to lead the Sydney Kings to glory.
And boy don’t they need him.
To put it simply, the Kings struggled last year. Big time.
The Kings won their last four games to pull themselves off the bottom of the table, and finished with a record of 11-17.
The inclusion of Jerome Randle as an import midway through the season lifted the Kings, and while they showed signs of improving, they all still weren’t on the same page.
Over the off-season, the Kings said goodbye to Perry Ellis, Todd Blanchfield, Jason Cadee and Isaac Humpries, but it’s the additions that are causing the headlines.
Andrew Bogut, David Wear, Daniel Kickert, Kyle Adnam, Tom Wilson, Deng Deng and Brian Bowen have all come into the side, and given they link up with the likes of Brad Newley, Kevin Lisch and Jerome Randle, some are suggesting this Kings side is the best side on paper the NBL has ever seen.
Straight off the bat, Bogut improves this side on the defensive end ten-fold, as they struggled to keep opposition sides out of the paint last season.
Bogut brings a tenacity and ferociousness most other NBL players don’t have, and it’s certainly something the Kings need.
He works well offensively too, and with his impressive passing game, the trio of himself, Lisch and Randle could cause headaches for defenders.
On top of everything, Bogut brings experience.
He’s been to the top of the mountain, and he’s done things very few players who have ever played in the NBL before have done.
In a competition that is shaping up to be the tightest in recent memory, every single advantage you can get is important, and Bogut just might be Sydney’s biggest trump card.