Magnificent Su is back and better than ever as Braimoh and Egbunu lead Jerusalem to win

Mar 11, 2022 | Holyland Hoops

The Magnificent Su is back and better than ever as Suleiman Braimoh helped pace Hapoel Jerusalem to a dominant 94-76 win over an undermanned Hapoel Tel Aviv team who lost J’Covan Brown to a knee injury in the second quarter.

Braimoh who rejoined the Capital City Reds a couple of months ago has been solid but not the usual Su that the fans saw during his first copal of seasons with the club. However, that seemed to all change in the win over Tel Aviv as Braimoh was the main man whether it was scoring from the outside or putting down a posterizing dunk to take the MVP award with his 20 points, 7 rebounds and 4 assists.

But Su never really looks at his contributions just on the stat sheet as he explained, “I don’t quantify my impact on the game by necessarily stats and I try to do whatever my team needs men to do whether it’s a high IQ play or defense but at the end of the day I am happy that I was here to help my team get the win.”

And that’s exactly what he did, help his team to the win as the opposing coach Danny Franco said while also praising the addition of another veteran, “The addition of KC Rivers is great for Jerusalem, his calm presence and he gives them a lot of quiet, he is definitely a strong player. When Su goes 4/4 from 3 it gives them also a boost and they scored from the outside at 50% rate. We usually keep teams to a lower score and this is how we win games.”

KC Rivers – Photo Credit:

Braimoh certainly had the outside shot working to his advantage but it’s also clear that with Rivers on board, Jerusalem has taken a big step forward and is serious in their desire to win the league championship.

“KC will make it easier for us to play. He finished with 13 points and 5 assist and you just don’t feel it as he buys makes the plays during the general flow of the game. He has played in the some of the biggest clubs in Europe and he has been able to give us that calm and quiet.”

John Egnunu was another new addition to the squad and he also spoke about what Rivers brings to the table for both him individually when he took advantage of a gorgeous back pass as well as for the team as whole, “He’s one of our leaders as well and is a vet who has played many years at the highest level in Europe. He was able to knock his shot down and he also helps us during the game.”

John Egbunu – Photo Credit:

As for his time with the club, the big man has really begun to flourish this past week and make an impact inside the paint, “It’s been great and a great spot for me. Everyone has been great and we want to continue to build, continue to get wings and continue to make this push.”

Braimoh also went out of his way to talk about how well rounded a performance Jerusalem had while also saying that the team itself has to take advantage of Egbunu’s abilities and put him in the right spots to succeed.

“For me personally that was very important I like to see my guys get the rhythm and for me do other things to help the team win. To see guys catch the rhythm and play together have good energy and guys finding shots in their comfortable spots especially John who hit some easy ones I like seeing those things and it bodes well for us.”

“He is integral for what we are trying to do but the onus remains on us to find him those opportunities and make his job as easy as possible. I think that this is something that we are going to continue to work on and that is a good foundation for us to build on.”

Suleiman Braimoh – Photo Credit:

Despite winning last game by a point over Bnei Herzliya, Braimoh knew that he had had a tough game on the court and didn’t contribute the way he wanted to. In fact, Halperin said that Braimoh actually came to apologize for his play.

Su really wants to win and he is very coachable. He knows when he isn’t playing well. He told me after last game, “Coach, I f——ed up. He knows that he had to make changes. He is very important for us and in lineups when he plays like this is he is great. He gave us some terrific minutes against Tel Aviv and he needs to keep up his aggressiveness.”

When Braimoh was asked about the conversation, he smiled and said, “Other games we got wins and I think I played a decent game but maybe not points or rebounds. But specifically the Herzliya game I felt bad, five turnovers, four which were live turnovers that led to immediate baskets at the other end and that is not how I play. I like to play high IQ basketball, get my guys involved and be aggressive. I think I had a decent second half but the first half contributed to putting my team in the hole so felt I owed my guys for that.”

With a 13-5 record in the Israeli league and the only competition that they are left with this season, every game is crucial for Jerusalem and every win helps build confidence along with consistency and puts them in a better position with three months remaining in the campaign.

Suleiman Braimoh – Photo Credit:

“It all takes time and we hit important games with the State Cup and Prometey early on. My job is to keep consistency. It’s very important that we are in first but also as to how we win our games. We have to do that properly and continue the process. We have a tough game coming up in Haifa as well.”

Braimoh spoke about how Halperin is adjusting to the coaching job but also doesn’t want to look to far ahead, “I think he is a good coach and I can only imagine how tough it is for him as he is learning on the fly, expectations and a lot of personalities he has to deal with. I think he is doing a great job and I think it’s out jobs as players to do out best to make it easy as possible for him.”

“I never look ahead because when you do that you lose track of what is in front of you. We got the job done today and have Haifa on Monday so we will get back to work and try to focus to get the job done.”

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