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Leslee Smith signs contract extension with Bristol Flyers

Leslee Smith has signed a one-year extension with the Bristol Flyers.

The British Virgin Islands international, who joined the club from Olimpi Tbilisi last summer, has now committed until the end of the 2017/18 season.

Prior to playing in the top flight in Georgia, Smith played NCAA Division One basketball at Nebraska in the ‘Big Ten’ conference.

“It feels really good to be back next season,” Smith told bristolflyers.co.uk.

“Bristol Flyers are a special club – last season was just our third year in the BBL and it’s the second time we’ve made it to the play-offs.

“We’ve been flying under the radar over the past few years so I think this season is the one to really make some noise in this league."

Smith made 32 appearances for the Flyers last season, averaging 12.3 points and 7.8 rebounds per game.

The 26-year-old also has experience on the international stage, having represented the British Virgin Islands at the 2014 FIBA Caribbean Basketball Championships in Tortola.

“I was excited when Coach Kapoulas said he wanted me back next season,” Smith explained.

"He didn't have to say much to convince me to come back at all – I already had my mind made up.

"We had a horrible start to last season, but ended up finishing in seventh place.

“A lot of teams would have just given up in that situation, but we showed great focus and determination to turn things around. I want us to build on that going into next season.”

Smith, who holds a British passport, becomes the second player to commit to Coach Kapoulas’ side for the 2017/18 season, joining American forward Brandon Boggs.

"Leslee had a very solid first season in the BBL and I am very pleased to see him return for a second season with our programme,” said head coach Andreas Kapoulas.

“This past season he made big physical improvements that really helped his overall game and I really feel that next season he will develop to a consistent high-level performer in our league.

"His experience, size and versatility will really help our team make even more impact in this coming season."

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