Taipans get Gak
The CQUniversity Cairns Taipans are pleased to welcome Akoldah “AK” Gak to the team, signing the athletic 6’11” forward, with a 7’2” wingspan, on a two-year deal.
Gak joins the Far North from Illawarra, where the Hawks secured the NBA prospect on a three-year contract when he was just 18.
Instead of accepting US college offers during COVID-19, Gak completed his final year of high school online and was rostered as a development player during his first NBL season under Brian Goorjian.
“AK is exciting. He has the ideal blend of strength and athleticism that’ll complement our style of play,” said Taipans Head Coach Adam Forde.
“He has spent time in Illawarra learning from great coaches, while learning what it takes to be a pro. He also won the Players’ Player award there which highlights the type of character and work ethic we will expect from him here.
“AK is not your normal 20-year-old – he’s been in the league for three seasons already. I anticipate his impact for us to be immediate and eye-opening.”
In his past two seasons at the Hawks, Gak has played limited minutes, but still got the call-up from the Chicago Bulls to play at NBA Summer League last year.
“AK has NBA ambitions. During the recruiting process, we spoke with his Summer League coaches and they were honest in their feedback. They said he possesses all the physical tools to make the transition, but just needed some more polish to his game,” explained Forde.
“Our plan here is to provide him with that opportunity in Cairns. He’ll showcase his talents to help us win, and we’ll help him reach his full potential.”
Gak joins Sam Mennenga, Tahjere McCall, Sam Waardenburg, Jonah Antonio and Lat Mayen on the 2023-24 Taipans roster.