Cairns Next Star Bobi Klintman has shared his thoughts on the Taipans' recent NBLxNBA tour.

26 Oct
By Dan Woods for

Cairns Next Star Bobi Klintman has returned to the NBL following a taste of what has been a lifelong dream – to hit the NBA court.

All eyes were on the Swedish young gun as he took part in the Taipans’ NBLxNBA tour against Washington and Toronto, and following a trio of games in the NBL, the 20-year-old wing prospect had the opportunity to test his game against the world's best.

The Taipans had their struggles against their NBA-calibre opposition, as the team was struck down by unlucky absences. Sam Waardenburg, Sam Mennenga and Josh Roberts all missed the game against Washington, while Mennenga, Taran Armstrong and Tahjere McCall were absent for the clash with Toronto.

So limited were the personnel, that former NBA guard Elfrid Payton was drafted in to play against the Raptors.

Despite the nature of the losses, Klintman says the trip was invaluable.

“It’s all you want as a kid,” Klintman told The Guardian. “To play against the best players in the world.

“Now we kind of have a little insight into what it really takes to get there.

“You get to experience a little NBA – it just motivates me more because that’s been my goal for so many years, and I just want to get there [even] more now.

“I just have to put my head down, keep working, and hopefully I’ll get there one day.”

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">THE STEAL ?? THE AND ONE<br>Klintman is doing it all!<br><br>? <a href="">@cairnstaipans</a> | ? <a href="">@kayosports</a> <a href=""></a></p>&mdash; Cairns Taipans (@CairnsTaipans) <a href="">October 15, 2023</a></blockquote> <script async src="" charset="utf-8"></script>

Klintman’s fellow draft prospect and teammate Armstrong was unfortunately hobbled by a persistent foot injury on the trip, but showed a level of poise that belies his years as an emerging point guard.

He returned back to Australia in a moon boot, and the game against Washington was his first since the pre-season Blitz.

“You have a good game in one of these situations, it could be life-changing for you,” Armstrong said between the two clashes.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Armstrong is locking it DOWN ?<br>Taran has three steals!<br><br>? <a href="">@cairnstaipans</a> | ? <a href="">@kay</a> <a href=""></a></p>&mdash; Cairns Taipans (@CairnsTaipans) <a href="">October 11, 2023</a></blockquote> <script async src="" charset="utf-8"></script>

Cairns returns to NBL action on Thursday, October 26 against the Illawarra Hawks. Tip-off is from 7:30pm AEDT and the game will be broadcast live on ESPN via Kayo.

Read the full story here >> 'It could be life-changing': what happens when an Aussie team takes on NBA giants

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