The Canterbury Rams are excited to announce the signing of Derek Albertsen for the 2021 Sal’s NBL Season! Originally from New Plymouth, Derek attended New Plymouth Boys High School and got his first taste of NBL basketball in 2012 while still at school. Derek was a development player for the Taranaki Airs, which would serve as his first season of many for the team.
Upon graduating high school, Derek moved to Dunedin to study at the University of Otago, suiting up for the Otago Nuggets and also representing New Zealand with the NZ Select Team at a Las Vegas tournament. This trip to the US was an excellent showcase, with US college coaches in attendance. Derek perked the interest of various US Colleges the following year, however home was also calling with Taranaki recruiting him to play for the Airs. The following two seasons Derek played for the Airs, proving his worth and earning starting level minutes with the team.
Derek’s passion for fitness and personal training lead him to move to Christchurch in 2015, where he continued to play basketball for the Canterbury Rams. Unfortunately, due to injury and work commitments, Derek was unable to play consistently but still enjoyed the opportunity to train and play at an elite level.
Another integral part to Derek’s journey was his 5 years with the Canterbury Knights under Rams assistant coach Piet Van Hasselt. He travelled all over New Zealand and Australia with the team, including a highlight Hoop Nation Championship win in 2017.
Fast forward to 2021 and Derek is back in red and black. Rams Head Coach Mick Downer commented on Derek saying “It’s great to have another veteran with NBL experience return to the league this season with our team. Derek is busy professionally but with support from his employer Flex Fitness he’s been able to commit to the Rams and suit up in the Sal’s NBL again. A great leader, inspirational communicator, mentor for younger guys as well as a very talented offensive player we are pumped to have Derek help guide our team this year.”
We’re pumped to have Derek join the strong Rams core for this season, with our first home game May 7th against the Manawatu Jets! Season memberships are on sale now with less than 150 memberships left.