Demond Watt says he would trade in his individual accolades if it meant he could get his hands on the BBL Play-Off trophy with the Cheshire Phoenix
Watt was crowned Molten BBL Player of the Month for the third time this season earlier this week after dominating the court in the month of February.
He shot almost 70% from the field during the past four weeks and also averaged over 10 rebounds per game.
But the American power forward, who has been a revelation for head coach John Coffino’s men, says it is what the Phoenix do as a collective that is of the utmost importance to him.
“It’s great for that accomplishment, it’s great for an individual standpoint, but I would for sure trade it all for play-off success because when you’re playing you will always be looked at by winning over individual accolades,” said the 25-year-old Texas A&M Corpus Christi graduate.
“I think individually we have some of the top talent in the league but a great team will always beat talent and that’s what teams above us have now, great team play.
“We must play well as a team to be able to win the play-offs.”
The Nix have stuttered in recent weeks and, although a tilt at the BBL Championship crown is not totally out of reach, it would require Newcastle Eagles to suffer a wretched run of form, and that doesn’t look likely.
Defeats to Leeds Force and Manchester Giants in the past fortnight have made that task even taller with Watt admitting the large number of minutes he and the squad have played this campaign owing to a shallow rotation has led to fatigue at this key stage of the season.
“I feel as of late I think fatigue has been a thing with the team,” he said.
“We have guys that have played heavy minutes and certain guys we have relied on heavy but I feel we will be fine. Coach (Coffino) will figure it out but other guys will have to step up more.”
A fans’ favourite at the Northgate Arena, the unassuming Watt has been a target for some rough treatment on court in the BBL as teams try to fathom a way to keep him locked down, with the 6ft 7ins Chicagoan often double teamed by opposition.
“It’s draining but most of my career I have been in the position of doubles and beatings to wear me down. I train my body to be able to handle it and keep playing but it’s mostly a mental thing I feel.”
With his future next season unclear, Watt says he will make a decision on where his future lies when the Phoenix have handled their business on the court at the end of the campaign.
“Right now I haven’t looked too far into next season and my main focus is to be the best I can this year and hopefully help this team to a championship, that’s my main thing now. After that I will focus on my next move when the time comes to it.”
The Nix are back in action this Sunday when Plymouth University Raiders make the long trip from Devon to the Northgate Arena (5.30pm).