News

All or nothing

Adelaide 36ers captain Mitch Creek doesn’t care. He doesn’t care about your predictions. He doesn’t care about the doubters. And he sure as heck doesn’t care about his numbers. The only thing on Creek’s mind is winning ball games. “As long as we win I don’t care what happens,” Creek told NBL Media this week. “We can make a lot of noise this season.” After dropping their opening game to Illawarra on Friday night, Adelaide will look to bounce back on the road against Melbourne United this afternoon. Creek is confident the Sixers can make a run this year. “The new guys we've got in are really exciting, young, full of energy, high octane players. We’re just really athletic and mobile in all positions,” Creek said. “It's going to be a hell of a season, if we can really get up and going.” Truth is, the same can be said about Creek himself. The 195cm swingman turned heads with his outstanding play during the preseason, was excellent on Friday night and looks set for a career year. The man simply did not stop working all winter. He’s in phenomenal physical shape, has spent countless hours improving his stroke and looks completely unstoppable in the open court. And with head coach Joey Wright rolling out some funky small-ball line-ups, Creek will see minutes at the four and even the five at times this season. He’s Adelaide’s Swiss Army Knife – think Draymond Green with the Golden State Warriors – and he’s loving every minute of it. “I'm just more confident in my abilities. I back myself a lot more now,” Creek said. “I put in a big body of work this off-season. I'm putting a lot of time in and I just want to continue to do that.” Creek was one of the standout performers at the Australian Basketball Challenge in Brisbane, where his exceptional play impressed the many NBA scouts in attendance. In Friday’s blowout loss to Illawarra, Creek was Adelaide’s lone wolf, scoring 24 points on 80 per cent shooting (including 3-of-4 from downtown) in only 13 minutes on the floor. One thing’s for sure though, it ain’t about the numbers. “It does not bother me one bit what my numbers are, how well I shoot from the two, three, how many steals I get, it doesn't faze me at all,” Creek said. “If I get on people’s radars to play somewhere else and maybe go to America one-day, great. If not and we win, great. “If I average zeros across the board but we end up being 18 and 10 and we've got some home court advantage in the finals, you will not see me with one sad face. I’ll be pumping everyone up like it's the last game of my career and I will try to lead by example every single game the exact same way.” It’s that kind of attitude that saw the Adelaide players nominate Creek to lead the club in his seventh season as a pro. The captaincy feels new and “different”, Creek says, but it’s also a comfortable fit. “The leadership side of things is something I’ve always worked on. I spend a lot of time with the sports psychs who work with us, trying to find new strategies, reading new material and just trying to build on being a leader,” the 24-year-old said. “It's a little bit of extra pressure but it's something I've taken on board wholeheartedly and look forward to.” He’s also willing to look beyond the hardwood for inspiration. “I think there is a lot to learn from a lot of different sports,” Creek said. “One specific to Adelaide is (Crows captain) Taylor Walker. He was nominated the best captain of 2016 in the AFL by his peers. “He is a young guy and he’s still learning and trying to find his way through the finals and into a premiership so there's a lot of things I could take out of his book. Stuff like leading by example and being that guy that can inspire someone.” Creek may not realise it yet, but his hard work, dedication and relentless approach to the game are already inspiring his teammates. In fact, they’re traits which may also be driving him towards the bright lights of the NBA. For right now though, all Mitch Creek cares about is getting wins for the 36ers. Written exclusively for NBL.com.au by Liam Santamaria
NEWS

Taipans Complete Roster with Experienced Point Guard

12 hours ago

NEWS

Perth Add NBL1 Standout as DP

19 hours ago

FEATURE

Gliddon Eyes Return to Best

19 hours ago

NEWS

Report: Makur Maker Signs NBA Deal

1 day ago

NBL23

Analysis: Breakout Candidates

1 day ago

NEWS

Humphries Drawn to United "Prestige"

1 day ago

FREE AGENCY

36ers Add “Extra Edge” to Roster

1 day ago

NEWS

NBL Trading Cards Return With Topps

1 day ago

GAME REPORT

Gaels Overrun Phoenix in OT Thriller

2 days ago

FREE AGENCY

Hawks Welcome Emerging Point Guard

2 days ago

LaMelo Ball Leads Hawks, Taipans Beat Bullets Again

16 September 2019

Fourth Place Frustration for Boomers in China

15 September 2019

FIBA World Cup Bronze Medal Game | Australia v France Preview

15 September 2019

Prather Shines In United's Big Win, Taipans Smash Bullets

14 September 2019

Starting Five: World Cup Heartbreak

14 September 2019

Spain Again Breaks Boomers Hearts in Double OT

13 September 2019

Watch Live | Illawarra Hawks vs Melbourne United

13 September 2019

FIBA World Cup Semi-Final | Australia v Spain Preview

13 September 2019

Starting Five: Boomers Two Wins from Gold

12 September 2019

Australia Advance to World Cup Final Four

12 September 2019

NBL Partners

Naming Rights
Major Partners
Broadcast & Media Partners
Profile Partners
Suppliers
Associates