WHO ARE: ARMORED ATHLETE TBT 2016
Armored Athlete GM AJ Mahar, in a way, began constructing this team years ago when he trained guard Will Sheehey when he was just a lad in high school. Sheehey would go on to play for Indiana and thus bring in teammates and 2012 ESPY Play of the Year award winner Chistian Watford and Jordan Hulls. From there the talent really started to pour in, making Armored Athlete one of the most dangerous teams in TBT's 2015 field, where the first-time participants competed out of the Midwest Region in Chicago. Along with the former Hoosiers, Armored Athlete brought in a range of different talent last summer, including former New Mexico star Alex Kirk, Arizona product Mark Lyons and Texas standout James Thomas. But it wasn't only the big names who made an impact for Mahar's team. Holy Cross grad and current Maine Red Claw forward Malcolm Miller proved to be one of the most talented players in the 2015 field, throwing down emphatic dunks and playing stifling defense. Independent Basketball Association legend Lloyd Johnson scored 29 in the team's opening round win over Chicago Elite. And David Dudzkinski, also from Holy Cross, proved to be crucial in a stretch-four role for Armored Athlete.
After receiving a popularity bye in the first round, Armored Athlete, a three-seed, rode Johnson's 29 points to a 98-86 win over Chicago Elite before crushing Reach 1 Teach 1 91-73 thanks to 21 points from Dudzinski, 19 from Miller, 18 from Watford and 16 from Hulls in a total team effort to advance to the Super 17. There, they gutted out a 96-91 win over the Illinois Hoopville Warriors behind 28 points from Sheehey to advance to the Midwest Regional Championship Game, where they fell just short to the Ants Alumni 76-72.
New in 2016
Dario Hunt, Roosevelt Jones, Isaiah Swann and Vernon Taylor join Armored Athlete this summer looking to build upon last year's success. Hunt, who hails from the University of Nevada, has played in Ukraine, Austria, Italy, and the D-League since graduating in 2012, a career path extremely similar to the teams other three newcomers.
In Their Own Words