Friday, October 21, 2011

Meet Terry Dehere, Luther Wright and the Jersey Express

Terry Dehere, Luther Wright grab the reigns of Jersey City ExpressJersey Express basketball coaches Terry Dehere and Luther Wright will call Jersey City their home court for the first time on Nov. 19.
S/O to my editor, Harvey Zucker:

Professional basketball is coming to Jersey City, with a couple of the state's all-time greats leading the way.

The Jersey Express, of the American Basketball Association (ABA), has moved from Newark to Jersey City and will play its home games at the Armory.

With the move, team owner Marsha Blount hired St. Anthony High School and Seton Hall University legend Terry Dehere as head coach and 7-footer Luther Wright, a former Elizabeth High star, as an assistant coach.

"We want the people of Jersey City to be aware, and to be a part of something special, in bringing pro basketball back to the city," said Dehere, who played six seasons in the NBA and now owns a restaurant in the city.

Home games for the Express start Nov. 19 at 7 p.m., when Dehere's squad takes on the Staten Island Vipers. There will be 15 regular season home games. The regular season ends March 3, with a post-season to follow.

"We are going for the championship," Blount said.

A couple broz who know all about the
Clippers & NBA Development.
Dehere and Blount compared the level of play in the ABA to the NBA's Development League. Teams in the league are from the tri-state area.

"The main difference is that the Development League is a direct affiliation of the NBA, meaning that the current NBA lockout will govern it as well," said Dehere, who was a first-round pick of the Los Angeles Clippers. "The ABA will look to fill that void.

"The ABA has some exciting rules that make for fast-paced, and high-scoring games. For example, if you steal the ball from your opposition and score before they get across halfcourt, that's a four-point basket."

Blount added: "The ABA provides more basketball players with opportunities to progress their careers, and to possibly play professionally overseas."

Blount said that in the past she has taken her players to Asia, all expenses paid, to get a feel for foreign environments.

She would not say anything about the players regular-season salaries, aside from that they comparable to "stipends."

Dehere in his Clippers days.
"We want to provide opportunity for players who didn't get the Duke, UNC, etc., looks coming out of high school -- help players get overseas, and to make a living playing a different type of basketball -- it's a platform for the players to propel their game," said Blount.

Luther Wright, also a Hudson County resident and a first-round pick of the Utah Jazz, will serve as Dehere's assistant coach.

Admission is $10 for adults and $5 for children. General admission season tickets run from $105, while VIP floor seat season tickets are $525 and include meals and concierge service.

For more information on the team or to purchase tickets, call (732) 904-4465 or email jbrown@jerseyexpress.net.

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