ONE of the more common recruitment methods in the NBL is through the Next Stars program, and the Perth Wildcats have snagged their first player through this system.
The Wildcats have added French teen Alexandre Sarr, who already has plenty of hype surrounding his potential in the sport of basketball. He joins the team ahead of his NBA Draft year in 2024, and will be eager to make an impression out West to boost his stock even further.
Standing at a whopping seven feet, Sarr is already an exciting prospect, with a strong balance within his skillset including athleticism and versatility. He is currently projected to be the 17th pick in the 2024 NBA Draft, and will be eager to follow in the footsteps of former Next Stars such as Lamelo Ball, Ousmane Dieng and Rayan Rupert in perfecting his craft in the NBL.
The 18-year-old has spent the last two years developing his game at Overtime Elite (OTE), which is a league in the United States which hosts some of the best young talent in the world from ages 16-20. During that time, he developed in a seriously impressive prospect, and will be eager to keep that rolling with Perth.
In the 2022/23 season, Sarr averaged 10 points, 6.3 rebounds, 1.9 assists, 1.1 steals and 1.1 blocks per game in a promising campaign. He worked extremely hard on both ends and showed a great amount of defensive versatility in the process. Sarr also has no problems getting to his spot under the hoop, where he can find the bottom of the net quite well.
Although capable of spending time as a power forward, the Wildcats may take full advantage of Sarr’s height and play him at the five. Regardless of which frontcourt position he occupies, the big man should prove a tough matchup for just about any player in the league at his size.
Sarr also brings international experience to the table, having suited up for France at the U17 World Cup in 2022, where he played a key role in getting his side to a bronze medal with 12 points, 3.9 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game.
Sarr seems determined to challenge himself against fully developed players at NBL level, but should have strong leadership from the likes of Keanu Pinder and Bryce Cotton, making Perth a much deeper outfit and potentially emerging as a bit of a wildcard for the team.