Chan De Ciman is now part Huskie and part Rattler. The 6-2 guard is one of four Huskies alumni to be drafted in the Canadian Elite Basketball League Entry Draft 2019.
He will join the hometown Saskatchewan Rattlers alongside former Huskies Shane Osayande and Michael Linklater, who led the Huskies to their only national championship in 2009-2010.
De Ciman, who is entering his fourth year of U Sports eligibility, will have an unprecedented opportunity in front of him this summer, and potentially beyond. As part of the CEBL partnership with U Sports, active U Sports players like De Ciman will be able to continue developing their game in a professional league during the summer months without it affecting their amateur U Sports eligibility status.
In layman terms, De Ciman can play with and against veteran professional players in the summer when he’s not playing for the Huskies.
“U Sports and the Canada West conference are both going to benefit from this. It’s going to improve everybody’s game,” said De Ciman. “I’ll be playing against great talent and be able to see how I match up with these guys. It’s also going to provide more exposure for us as well.”
De Ciman’s older brother, Joe, played U Sports basketball before travelling overseas upon graduation to play professionally in Spain. Following in his brother’s footsteps is “definitely a goal for me — Joe has laid the blueprint for me to follow,” De Ciman said.
In the meantime, De Ciman understands how fortunate he is to be able to continue chasing his dreams of playing fulltime professional basketball while staying just two-and-ahalf hours from his hometown of Regina where he planned on living during the summer months before being selected by the Rattlers.
“It’s a summer of growth for me. I’m just going to get better from this, taking every day one step at a time, and soak in as much as possible from guys like Linklater. I’m going to be training every day,” said De Ciman.
The Huskies have got to be pleased with De Ciman’s opportunity as well. The team will lose both their leading scorer and their leading rebounder from this past season, heading into the next.
“We’re losing Joe [Barker] and Lawrence [Moore], so that’s a lot of points and rebounds that need to be replaced,” De Ciman said. “Next year is a big year for me. I’m just trying to focus on my craft and soak in the experience this summer.”
All signs point towards an increased workload for De Ciman, who will be relied upon as a leader for the Huskies next season in what should be a very interesting campaign for the program. This past year, the dogs swept Regina in the quarter-finals before being eliminated at the hands of the Calgary Dinos in the semifinals. The Dinos went on to win the conference and eventually lose the national championship game against Carleton.
Be sure to support De Ciman and the Huskies next season as they seek to reach the Canada West championship final for the first time since 2014-2015. Until then, you can catch a glimpse of De Ciman’s game as the Rattlers kick off their inaugural season, beginning at home against the Niagara River Lions on Thursday, May 9.
Photos: Chan De Ciman / Supplied, GetMyPhoto.ca / Supplied