IS he the best 3-point shooter here? There are no statistics to prove that, but Darren Lesperance surely ranks among the greatest shooters of all time in the local game.
When he’s hot, he can rain down 3-pointers and Praslin Warriors suffered the consequences on Saturday at the Grand Anse Praslin court in a 60-122 loss to Premium Cobras in a men’s division one match.
It was no doubt ‘Lesperance time’! After connecting once from behind the arc in the first and third quarters, Lesperance got into a groove in the fourth to knock down eight treys – among those three in a row – to finish with a game-high 42 points.
A pure shooter, Lesperance, 25, who joined the Cobras from Angels last season, said he was in a groove on Saturday.
“I just felt good,” he told Sports Nation.
“I realised I was hot, and sometimes I just stood and took a shot and the basketball just went down the hoop. It was easy,” he added.
With his 10 treys that tamed the Warriors, Lesperance – whose shooting style might look normal, but his release is excellent – is now the sole leader in long-range shooting this season.
Before his exploits on Praslin, he was sharing the record of six 3-pointers with Cascade Bullets’ Dan Côme, Beau Vallon Heat’s Marlon Marimba and MBU Rockers’ Brian Morel.
A master of catching and shooting, Lesperance says it takes a lot to shoot lights out from long distance.
“I do a lot of shooting before and after each club training session. I also train one hour on my own on Tuesdays and Thursdays before HotShots use the Anse Boileau court,” added the Seychelles international, who made his debut with MBU Rockers in 2003 at the age of 19.
He was with Angels from 2005 until last year, when he joined former champions Premium Cobras, with whom he wants to perform well and win a lot of silverware.
“We had a poor first round in the league and we now want to stay unbeaten in the second and also win the Seychelles Basketball Federation Cup to add to the Curtain-raiser title we won earlier in the season,” he said.
The player, who wants to cement himself in the local sport’s history as the ultimate ‘clutch player’, is also looking forward to the eighth Indian Ocean Islands Games (IOIG) here in 2011 after returning home empty-handed with the national team from the last games in Madagascar in 2007.
After winning the hearts and minds of the spectators on Praslin on Saturday, Lesperance hopes to show, come the next IOIG, that no one is more money from behind the arc when it matters.