Devearl Ramsey guarded about what makes him so important in Sheffield Sharks offence
In January, with the Sharks slumping, Lyons brought in shooting guard Devearl Ramsey for his first professional contract overseas after graduating from the University of California Santa Barbara.
A month later, Jalon Pipkins was introduced as point guard and together the duo have transformed the way the Sharks play – arguably for the better. They are two regulars in the Sharks’ starting five, orchestrating the offence and pitching in with their fair share of points – Pipkins the eye-catching slam-dunker and Ramsey with the fade-away three pointers and long-range twos.
Ramsey is also responsible for an average of 5.0 assists a game, bettered by only two players in the entire league, and it is one of the reasons why he was named in the league’s team of the week.
He made seven assists in both the win over Surrey Scorchers last Thursday night at the Canon Medical Arena and the defeat on the road at Caledonia Gladiators on Saturday.
On top of that he scored 11 and 14 points respectively, but behind the statistics, it is Ramsey’s ability to lift the team with his up-tempo play that is most valuable.
"I try to let the game come to me, I know my team-mates are going to help me make the game easier for myself and get me in my spots to score,” Ramsey, pictured, told The Yorkshire Post.
"I try not to put too much pressure on myself to come out and do a lot of things. I know if I come out and play that way that I can play then everything is going to be good for me and the team.”
Every sports person will tell you they feel their team is capable of achieving something special, but the fact Ramsey came back to Sheffield in the summer to carry on what they started midway through last season, speaks volumes.
"I’m getting used to it, I’m getting acclimated to the teams and also the style of play, I’m definitely getting more comfortable as the season goes on,” said the 26-year-old. "Going into the summer I spoke to the guys, I spoke to coach Atiba, and there was a great atmosphere here, from top to bottom there’s a lot of good people.
"For my first experience of playing overseas it’s just a comfortable place to be. The city is cool, the people are really nice. My team-mates are pretty cool and a lot of them came back in the summer, all that stuff played a big part in me coming back.
"I feel like we can do something special here, we’re winning some games now and hopefully we can keep that going.”
They are at home, four in five at their new arena, and with four of their next six games before Christmas to come on their home court – starting Friday against Leicester Riders – optimism is high that they can build on their 7-6 (win-loss) record and climb out of fifth place.
"We’re making the most of home advantage and even on a Thursday at 8 o’clock we had a good crowd in,” said Ramsey. "This arena is huge and we’re taking a lot of pride in it.”