“Been real Wollongong. Appreciate all the love I have received from you fans over the last 3 years. You guys have been awesome!! All love.”
That was now former Hawk Cody Ellis’ final sign off via twitter this week after Illawarra opted against re-signing him for another season.
It was indicative of the way he’s handled himself over the last 12 months despite being treated awfully, and disrespectfully, by previous management.
He had plenty of opportunities to kick stones – he was effectively being frozen out of his livelihood – but he always conducted himself with class.
His finish to last season, and efforts over over previous campaigns, proved he still has plenty to offer the NBL so hopefully he finds another home.
The fact is it’s also a recruitment gamble on the Hawks behalf. Ellis’ all-round skill set and ability to shoot the three made him the perfect complement to the Hawks front-court.
AJ Ogilvy is one of the premier bigs in the league at his best, but battled injury through most of last season. Dave Andersen is also a great recruit, but he’s 38 and has also had recent injury worries.
Ellis shaped as the perfect insurance policy should either suffer any injuries. Should that occur a lot will fall on Brian Conklin inside.
If all goes to plan, it won’t appear such a bad move, but if it doesn’t, fans may end up asking the same question they asked for much of last season – where’s Cody?