Leicester point guard Cameron Rundles has shouldered much of the blame for their play-off final defeat, and admits he’s gutted.
Rundles, 24, in his rookie season, has been a star player for the Riders, as they enjoyed their best ever league campaign, but they were unable to pick up any silverware, as they went down 71-62 against Newcastle in Birmingham on Saturday.
The Minneapolis-born man found himself in foul trouble midway through the game, and was forced to sit out much of the third quarter as the Riders squandered their advantage, and Rundles sat out the last 73 seconds having finally picked up his fifth foul, possibly the distraction that may have cost Leicester glory.
He said: “I got in to foul trouble. It was tough on me. I feel like if I’d have played better, we’d have won. I take a lot of the loss on my shoulders.
“I feel like I’ve got a great group of teammates and they could have folded, but they held strong until I got back in.
“I’m gutted to the fact we put in a lot of time and effort, just like every team in the BBL, and we came up a little short.
“But I take my hat off to Newcastle, they deserve it.”
It was a difficult afternoon for Rundles, who in just under 30 minutes on the court, could only land one field goal, and just 33% (2/6) from the line.
He wasn’t the only guilty party on that score. The Riders managed just 6 free throws in the whole game, at a conversion rate of just 30%, and went 0 from 10 in the second half.