5 May 2015

Breakers re-sign Vukona

2:32 pm on 5 May 2015

The Breakers have re-signed their captain and five-time Australian championship winning forward Mika Vukona on a three-year deal.

New Zealand Breakers Mika Vukona in action.

New Zealand Breakers Mika Vukona in action. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

The Breakers head coach Dean Vickerman said he's delighted to retain Vukona, who he calls an "inspirational leader."

"Re-signing him for the next three years gives the club the best opportunity to have continued success.

"Mika is the glue that holds us strong and ensures we continue to progress," Vickerman said.

"Mika does so many things that help you win, but it is his relentless pursuit of the ball that sets him apart from many other athletes."

Vukona, who first won the ANBL with the now defunct South Dragons in 2009, is currently

on a short-term contract with Acea Virtus Roma as they chase a place in the Italian post-season.

"Being here in Italy has given me a new lease of life in basketball," he said.

"This has added more layers and made me realise I can do so much more and I look forward to doing that in the next three years at the Breakers."

Vukona said he had options, but pledged his future to the four-time championship winning Breakers.

"In many ways it was a very hard decision to get to Europe, and once here the opportunity was there to stay longer term, but the pull of the Breakers was a no-brainer to come back.

Vickerman said the club's decision to retain Vukona is best explained by a quote from the NBA winning coach Chuck Daly, who coached the US "Dream Team" at 1992 Olympics.

"If you have a chemistry guy on your basketball team, don't let them out of the building."

The Breakers 2015/16 roster so far:

Cedric Jackson, point guard

Reuben Te Rangi, guard/small forward

Duane Bailey, forward

Mika Vukona, forward

Alex Pledger, centre