Sept. 29, 2011
QUEENS, N.Y. - St. John's men's basketball graduate Sean Evans has been in Germany for the last two weeks trying out, but officially became the fifth member of the Red Storm Class of 2011 to sign a professional contract on Tuesday. Evans landed a pro deal with Dusseldorf Giants of Germany's Pro A League, a squad located in the city of Dusseldorf on the Rhine River in Western Germany.
"We are pleased that Sean has received this well-deserved opportunity to play professional basketball," said St. John's head coach Steve Lavin. "His improved play was a key to our late season surge and push into the NCAA Tournament. We are confident Sean will take the lessons learned last year and add true value to his new team. His best days in basketball are ahead of him."
"I am very excited to be playing professionally and opening this new chapter of my life. I am excited and humbled at the same time," said Evans. "I want to thank all of my coaches at St. John's, they taught me so much. I also want all of our St. John's fans to continue to follow me on my journey on Twitter [@shizzy_15]. Thank you for all of your support throughout the years."
The Dusseldorf Giants play in the Pro A League in Germany, which feeds into the German Bundesliga (BBL), similar to how the NBA Developmental League in the U.S. feeds into the NBA. Evans' Giants, however, may have a chance to move into the BBL this season. Dusseldorf, an international business and financial center known for advertising and fasion, is located 172 miles West of Gottingen, Germany, where Evan's St. John's Class of 2011 teammate Paris Horne is currently playing with BG Gottingen of the BBL.
Evans, a 6-8, 259-pound bruising forward, established himself among the Red Storm's most consistent performers as a junior in 2009-10, and his 11 career double-doubles included an 11-point, 12-rebound effort vs. Syracuse in the 2011 BIG EAST Tournament. His knack for big-game play included averaging 13.8 ppg and 9.5 rpg while shooting 67.7 percent from the field and 76.5 percent at the free throw line in four games across his junior and senior BIG EAST Tournaments, and his 10-point, 5-of-5 field goal effort in St. John's 93-78 victory over No. 3/3 Duke on Jan. 30, 2011 at a sold-out Madison Square Garden is forever etched into the memory of STJ fans.
Evans follows the path of Fellow St. John's teammate Justin Brownlee, who inked a pro deal in early September with the Toros de Nuevo Laredo in the Liga Nacional de Baloncesto Profesional (LNBP), located just across the Mexican border from Laredo, Texas. Justin Burrell signed a pro contract in late August to play for the Yokohama B-Corsairs, located just outside of Tokyo, Japan. Dwight Hardy, a 2011 Associated Press All-American, a first team All-BIG EAST selection and the conference's Most Improved Player, signed a professional contract with Pistoia Basket in the Tuscany region of Italy, in late July. In mid-July, Horne signed to play for BG Gottingen, a member of the German Bundesliga, the premier basketball association in that nation.
Evans' senior season marked the first year of The Lavin Era, which included a 21-12 overall record in 2010-11 - marking St. John's most wins since the 2002-03 season - with six Top 25 victories and four over Top 10 opponents. Evans' play and Lavin's leadership helped transform a team that finished in 13th place in the BIG EAST Conference last season at 6-12 to a squad that tied for third in 2010-11 at 12-6 - only twice before has a jump of such magnitude occurred in BIG EAST Conference history. The Red Storm finished its season ranked 18th in the Associated Press Top 25, marking the first time it qualified for the postseason as a ranked team since 2000-01. The Red Storm, which posted a 7-1 record in eight regular season games at Madison Square Garden (capacity: 19,353) and a 5-2 record on campus at Carnesecca Arena (capacity: 5,602) saw its home attendance climb by 38.1 percent, marking the fourth-largest increase in NCAA Division I men's basketball.
Fans can visit the new RedStormTix.com to download a season ticket order form, or request to be contacted. Packages start at $275 for the general public and $99 for St. John's students. To order season tickets by phone, call 1-888-GO-STORM (467-8676). Fans can join the Red White Club by visiting RedStormSports.com and clicking on the link to "Giving" to visit the all-new Red White website.