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Next Star Malique Lewis Signs with Phoenix

10 Jul
3 mins read

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Phoenix Media

South East Melbourne Phoenix is proud to announce the signing of a high-level NBA draft prospect Malique Lewis as part of the NBL Next Stars program.

Nine Next Stars have been drafted directly from the NBL to the NBA, including a record four in last month’s draft, and Lewis will look to build his stock as a first-round selection in 2025 throughout the NBL season.

Lewis hails from Trinidad & Tobago, becoming the first Next Star from the nation during the program’s history.

The 6’8 forward possess an impressive 7’1 wingspan and is loaded with potential, having picked up basketball as a teenager after mainly playing soccer while growing up. 

Despite that, the 19-year-old already boasts strong experience, spending last season with Mexico City Capitanes in the NBA G League, and the two years prior to that with Fuenlabrada in the Spanish ACB. 

“I'm absolutely thrilled to join the South East Melbourne Phoenix and the NBL,” Lewis said.

“I can't wait to get started with the team and be part of the Next Star program. I'm incredibly grateful to SEM for this amazing opportunity. I'm eager to get out there, help the team win games, and make our fans proud. 

“While my ultimate goal is to be drafted in the 2025 NBA Draft, my focus right now is all about giving my best for Phoenix and contributing to a successful season.” 

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“We are incredibly excited to welcome Malique Lewis as our newest Next Star for the upcoming season,” NBL General Manager of Next Stars Recruitment, Liam Santamaria, said.

“Malique is a player that possesses tremendous upside. He has a unique combination of elite physical tools, a versatile skillset and youth, making him a very exciting prospect.

“He possesses high level defensive instincts and his length, speed and athleticism make him a disruptive and impactful defender. Offensively, Malique has a prototypical skillset for a modern NBA three-and-D wing, with his ability to run the floor, get above the rim and knock it down from long range.

“We can’t wait to watch Malique progress as a Next Star with the Phoenix and know that the NBL is the perfect place for him to reach his full potential.”

Lewis flashed his enormous upside in May last year when he produced the fourth-highest scoring game in ACB history by a player aged 18 or younger, amassing an impressive 24 points vs Obradoiro. 

“Malique is a really unique prospect and his potential is incredibly exciting,” Phoenix GM of Basketball Operations Simon Mitchell said.

“He’s got great attributes, he’s a great size and he’s already as astute defender, we’re looking forward to welcoming him to the Phoenix.”   

The influence of the Next Stars program on the basketball world is growing, with NBA legends Carmelo Anthony (Global Ambassador) and Kenny Smith (Head of Next Stars Player Initiatives - North America) recently joining the program in an official capacity. 

Lewis is the fifth confirmed Next Star for the 2024/25 season, joining Rocco Zikarsky (Brisbane Bullets), Alex Toohey (Sydney Kings), Roman Siulepa (Tasmania JackJumpers) and Izan Almansa (Perth Wildcats). 

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