Barnett: It's been tough to handle all the changes
MARJON Plymouth Raiders rookie Javarris Barnett says it has been difficult emotionally to handle the BBL club's turnover of players this season.
Raiders have used 11 senior professionals in the league this season, three of which have since left – Anthony Rowe, Jeremy Bell and Liam Potter.
The trio have been replaced in a core eight-man rotation by Jamal Williams, Rod Brown and Andreas Schreiber respectively.
American rookie Barnett, who joined Raiders out of his hometown University of Charlotte last summer, said of the situation: "It's difficult. You bond with your team-mates and get to know them as good guys.
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"But players can't determine what goes on at a club.
"When someone new comes in, you just have to embrace him like you embraced the guy who has just left."
Barnett started this season slowly personally before starting to really find his feet from mid-November.
He added: "It's been a long ride already this season.
"We've seen players go and players come in. But basketball's a business. It is what it is.
"As players, we can't change it. We just have to go with what we've got."
Despite his rookie status, Barnett, 23, is mature enough to realise you don't have to be thick as thieves with your team-mates off the court, as long as you are on it.
He said: "You don't have to be cool with each other off the court, being together on it is what matters.
"With the group of guys we have here, everyone's bought into what we're trying to do this season.
"There are no big egos, so the camaraderie and togetherness is pretty good."
Of his personal struggle to hit real form in the BBL, Barnett added: "In college basketball, you quite often are the main man and have the ball in your hands a lot.
"In professional basketball, everybody's good, so you have to find your place on the team and find your niche, and what you have to do to play more minutes and stay on the floor.
"It's difficult and a struggle. You just have to stay the course and do what you have to do to contribute."