Ra Gun-ah sets new KBL record with 5,242 rebounds
Ra Gun-ah of Jeonju KCC Egis, an American-born Korean forward, on Wednesday set a new Korean Basketball League (KBL) record with 5,242 career rebounds.
Ra hit the milestone in a Wednesday game against Goyang Orion Orions at Jeonju Gymnasium in Jeonju.
Retired basketball player Seo Jang-hoon previously held the KBL record with 5,235 career rebounds. Seo, who started out his career with the Cheongju SK Knights in 1998, also played for the Jeonju KCC Egis from 2007 to 2008.
On Wednesday, Ra who had 5,222 rebounds going into the game, recorded his 5,236th rebound with six minutes and 17 seconds left on the clock in the third quarter. The game was briefly paused while Ra received a plaque commemorating his achievement in setting a new KBL record.
Ra actually made a total of 20 rebounds throughout Wednesday's game, extending the current KBL record to 5,242 rebounds.
Seo’s record of 5,235 rebounds was set after 688 games, but Ra has far surpassed that record, reaching the new milestone after playing only 482 matches. Considering that disparity, Ra has the potential to significantly extend the KBL record over the next few seasons.
Ra has now played 10 seasons in the KBL after debuting in 2012 with the Ulsan Hyundai Mobis Phoebus. He had played collegiately at the University of Missouri before coming to Korea, and started his career here as Ricardo Preston Ratliffe before naturalizing in January 2018.
In his three years with the Phoebus, the Ulsan club topped the table every season and won every championship, establishing Ra as a valuable asset.
In 2015, he left the team to play for the Seoul Samsung Thunders and in 2016 and 2017, Ra briefly played for the Philippine Basketball Association’s Star Hotshots.
Ra was given the Korean name Ra Gun-ah after he naturalized in 2018. He is now also a regular fixture on the Korean national basketball team, having played a friendly between North and South Korea in July, 2018 in Pyongyang, competed at the 2018 Asian Games and led the team at the 2019 FIBA World Cup where Korea finished 26th out of 32 teams.
Ra signed with the KCC Egis in 2020 and has been with the Jeonju club ever since. With Ra at the helm, Jeonju won the 2020-21 regular season title, but ended up losing the KBL Championship to Anyang KGC.
Despite Ra's achievements on the court, the Egis are struggling this season. With 32 games played, KCC are currently in unfamiliar territory in ninth place on the 10-team table with 11 wins and 21 losses. The Seoul SK Knights lead the league with 25 wins and eight losses.
BY YUN SO-HYANG [firstname.lastname@example.org]