Nathan of Perth
Wildcats sign Erik Burdon
The Perth Wildcats have signed South Australian guard Erik Burdon on a one-year deal ahead of the 2013/14 NBL season.
Burdon has been playing for Mt Gambier Pioneers in the SEABL where he was spotted by Wildcats scouts and then tested by 'Cats coaches in Perth before the decision was made to sign him.
The 28-year-old stands at 188cm, weighs 82kg and is rated as a one-point player under the NBL's points cap system.
Burdon says it’s a dream come true to get an NBL call up.
"It’s very exciting and it’s great to now be a part of the Perth organisation. It’s something I’ve been working towards for a long time now, I spent time at Adelaide in a development role but I’ve kept working at it, and it’s finally happened," said Burdon.
“My outside shooting is definitely my strength, so if I can help stretch the floor for the big guys and the penetrators, I’ll be able to add plenty of value to this team.”
Wildcats head coach Trevor Gleeson said Burdon will fill an important role in the roster.
“We need more shooters from the perimeter, we have enough talent to get to the basket, but we need to stretch the defence and Erik is one of the best shooters in the SEABL. I went to Mt Gambier to see him play and his ability to catch and shoot is a piece of the puzzle we need at the Wildcats,” said Gleeson.
“He will come off the bench as a pinch-hitter, to break up a zone defence or when we need a three-point shooter on the floor. He’s a little bit older for a first-time NBL player, and we will teach him a lot of things, but one thing we won’t need to teach him is how to shoot.”
After playing with North Adelaide in his local league, Burdon was picked up by the 36ers where he spent three years as a development player and one season as a training player. Following this stint, he plied his trade with Mt Gambier in the SEABL where his game continued to develop.
This season he has helped the Pioneers to a top-of-the-table position in the South division where he has averaged 17.3 points while shooting at 43.3 per cent from the field and almost 40 per cent from the three-point line.
Burdon is the seventh player signed on the Wildcats roster for the 2013/14 NBL season, alongside Shawn Redhage, Damian Martin, Matt Knight, Jesse Wagstaff, Greg Hire and Mathiang Muo.
DOB: 28 March 1985
Birth place: Adelaide, South Australia
Wildcats Playing Number: 41
Recruited from: Mt Gambier Pioneers - SEABL