Basketball Alum to play for Hawthorn Magic

File photo by Ryan Hueglin

File photo by Ryan Hueglin

Former Wilfrid Laurier University men’s basketball player Max Allin is making ripples in Australia. The Hawk alum is moving up a division this year to play with the Hawthorn Magic after he spent the last two seasons playing for the Southern Peninsula Sharks.

In his rookie season with the Sharks, Allin posted an average of 16.4 points per game, picking up 2.2 offensive rebounds, 6.8 defensive rebounds and 3.3 assists per game, enough to be voted as Division 1 defensive player of the year.

“We came under the radar and we made it all the way to the championships and losing in the very last game of the championships in a best out of three, and it was a really surprising season for the club because it was their first time in the championships,” Allin said. “So that was pretty exciting.”

Allin continued to persevere in his second season with the Sharks, posting 19 points with 8.2 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game. Even though Allin had a strong season, the Sharks struggled and missed the playoffs.

“This year we had eight or nine new guys come into the team. It was a complete turnaround, lots of injuries. Still had a good season personally, but we ended up missing the playoffs by one game,” he said. “So, that was a bit disappointing, but the other two seasons I played well enough that I was able to get recruited and now I’m up a division which I am really excited about.”

Allin was recruited back in 2014 by Southern Peninsula Sharks head coach Luke Sunderland, a Laurier alumni, who always looks back at Laurier when he looks for recruits. Sunderland played for one year as a transfer for the Hawks in 2006 and goes to Laurier looking for imports to recruit.

“He always looks back at Laurier because it’s easier for Canadians to get Visas and Australians feel like Canadians fit in better there,” Allin explained. “Australians and Canadians are very similar people, so he always looks back at Laurier and he talked to [Laurier men’s basketball head coach] Peter Campbell and he found me. The rest is history.”

“It’s pretty cool to get interest overseas.”

One of the biggest challenges Allin is facing while playing in Australia is being an import athlete. The Southern Peninsula Sharks are only allowed two imports on the team due to regulations set by the division. As Allin moves into the State Championship division, the Magic are also only allowed to have two imports playing for the team.

To overcome this, Allin is applying for Australian citizenship for next season.

“The imports for [the next highest divisions] are NBA draft picks, which is a little bit unrealistic for me to be an import, but being Australian, I’ll be able to fill one of the 10 roles there,” he said.

“When I head back this year I’m going to apply for permanent residency, and after this season I’ll be considered Australian and move up to the highest league. That’s the plan.”

In the future, Allin wants to advance his basketball career and hopes to play with the Hawthorn Magic for a couple years before moving up to the next highest division. Once he makes it there, Allin looks to play in Australia for the next five to 10 years before possibly playing in Europe.

“For now, I am content playing in Australia. It’s a beautiful country and I’m really enjoying my time there,” he said.

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