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Spirit of Kobe can give us a lift in title pursuit, insists Fulton

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Adrian Fulton

Adrian Fulton

@INPHO/Oisin Keniry

Adrian Fulton

Head coach Adrian Fulton has revealed that the whole Belfast Star squad came together to discuss the harrowing loss of basketball legend Kobe Bryant ahead of their first training session of the week on Monday.

The sporting world was left in total shock by the loss of LA Lakers hero Bryant in a helicopter crash last Sunday night.

"It felt like the right thing to do, to talk about Kobe, because everyone connected to the sport naturally felt the sense of loss of someone who will be remembered as an all-time great. It was just a reminder to us that life can be very short - it can change in a moment and you don't want any regrets," said Fulton.

Star travel to Moycullen tonight seeking to remain in pole position in the All-Ireland Superleague as the season enters the final third and Fulton believes that his men can learn from Kobe's greatness with the title race a battle between four clubs.

"In every sport you need people who can deliver when it matters most and Kobe was certainly one of those players. If there was one guy you would want shooting from the line to win the game, he would be the man. He had that ruthless streak, that combination of great talent and a great work ethic, which is rare," added Fulton.

"I think we can all learn from how he approached the game… he inspired a lot of people to play the game and to achieve what they wanted."

As for the trip to Moycullen, Fulton is expecting another tough encounter on the road. The return of Conor Quinn from injury two weeks ago was a major lift for the club and Fulton believes he can have a key role over the remaining two months.

"It's great to have Conor back, he just needs to realise that he can't put too many high expectations on himself. He wants to come back and play the perfect game but that is not going to happen - he has to be patient and just play hard," said Fulton.

"There's no doubt that he brings an extra edge of intensity to the court, whether it is in practice or in the game.

"It was clear that his twin brother Aidan was delighted to be back playing with him, there's a natural chemistry there. We just need to get the best out of him.

"This game away to Moycullen is going to be a tough scrap. I went to see them against Killester over Christmas so I know it won't be easy, particularly in their gym."

Belfast Telegraph