Years ago

Best 15 Player in NBL

15 Ian Crosswhite (Sydney Kings)
14 Damian Martin (Perth Wildcats)
13 Seth Scott (Melbourne Tigers)
12 Jamar Wilson (Cairns Taipans)
11 Luke Neville (Townsville Crocs)
10 Rhys Martin (Wollongong Hawks)
9 Mika Vukona (NZ Breakers)
8 Shawn Redhage (Perth Wildcats)
7 Jonny Flynn (Melbourne Tigers)
6 Adam Gibson (Adelaide 36ers)
5 Gary Ervin (Townsville Crocs)
4 Kevin Lisch (Perth Wildcats)
3 Matt Knight (Perth Wildcats)
2 Ben Madgen (Sydney Kings)
1 Cedric Jackson (NZ Breakers)

Taken from today by Paulo Kennedy


Topic #30467 | Report this topic

Years ago

Interesting Vukona made number 9 when according to a few posters on here Anthony Petrie is the better player (although he did get an honorable mention).

I would have had Gibson further up the list and Rhys Martin further down as I am rating him as the best Aussie PG in the league at the mo (he is a huuuuge reason the Hawks are where they are).

not surprised Abercrombie didn't get a mention as his season has been AVERAGE but he has been stepping up at times (hit a couble of shots at crucial times against Wollongong).

Does anyone disagree with the top 2?

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Years ago

* Gibson further up as in towards 15 and Rhys Martin down the list as in closer to 1 (obviously not number 1 and number 15 but you get my drift) lol

Reply #397609 | Report this post

Years ago

Switch Scott and Flynn based on their actual contributions so far.

Reply #397610 | Report this post

Years ago

Ben Madgen is having a great season but I still wouldn't put him as the #2 player. Also, Luke Nevill is way better than 11th. I know Deleon has played garbage recently, but he still isn't good enough to make the top 15?

Interesting that neither Johnson or Schenscher made the 15.

Reply #397613 | Report this post

Years ago

Johnson in that list instead of Crosswhite.

Knight is good but isn't 3rd best in the league.

Agreed with Flynn and Scott being swapped

Reply #397619 | Report this post

The Situation  
Years ago

I think Cam Tovey was 16th.

Reply #397620 | Report this post

Years ago

The main thing I notice about this list is the talent drain on the NBL. The imports seem to be of a lower standard to yesteryear and we have lost most of our national stars to overseas competitiions. I think the overall depth of Oz basketball is stronger but at the NBL level we have suffered from the talent drain.
Just thinking of the late 90's when the 36ers were firing the league had years with the following players:

Sam Mac

Those names would all be in the above list if playing now, and that doesn't include imports such as:


Reply #397621 | Report this post

Tiger Watcher  
Years ago

My List of best 15 players
(I like to take into account not only skill but importance to thier teams success)

15 Cameron Tragardh (Cairns Taipans)
14 Matt Knight (Perth Wildcats)
13 Seth Scott (Melbourne Tigers)
12 Jamar Wilson (Cairns Taipans)
11 Jonny Flynn (Melbourne Tigers)
10 Rhys Martin (Wollongong Hawks)
9 Daniel Johnson (Adelaide 36ers)
8 Michael Dunigan (Perth Wildcats)*
7 Shawn Redhage (Perth Wildcats)
6 Adam Gibson (Adelaide 36ers)
5 Luke Neville (Townsville Crocs)
4 Gary Ervin (Townsville Crocs)
3 Kevin Lisch (Perth Wildcats)
2 Ben Madgen (Sydney Kings)
1 Cedric Jackson (NZ Breakers)

*Isn't in the league any longer but most exciting C when he was.

Reply #397623 | Report this post

Years ago

@nutwork - There's no doubt the league has excellent depth of good players now, due to fewer teams, but not nearly as many stars as at the turn of the millenium, which is probably the NBL's peak standard along with perhaps 07 and 08.

Although I think you were a little kind to some players like Davis, Maley, Fisher, Crawford who were past their best at that 99-00 period. And there were a lot of role playing imports at that stage because of the depth of Aussie talent taking the cash and the low Aussie dollar back then.

There is definitely a much smaller gap between best and worst today.

Reply #397625 | Report this post

Years ago

For mine broken down by true position.

Point Guards
1. Jackson
2. Ervin
3. Flynn
4. D Martin
5. Deleon

Shooting Guards
1. Madgen
2. Lisch
3. Gibson
4. R Martin
5. Crawford

Small Forward
1. Redhage
2. Abercrombie
3. Weigh
4. Rush
5. Blanchfield

Power Forwards
1. Knight
2. Scott
3. Vukona
4. Johnson
5. Lazare

1. Neville
2. Dunnigan
3. Schensher
4. Crosswhite
5. Pledger

Reply #397629 | Report this post

Years ago

Agreed Paul, but I would rather have Fisher, Vlahov, Davis, Maley as my 9th man than Pero.

Reply #397630 | Report this post

Years ago

A starting 5 of

PG. Jackson
SG. Madgen
SF. Abercrombie (Although Redhage better in NBL)
PF. Knight
C. Neville

I would really like to see them against the winner of the NBA D league. To prove our players are much better than the likes of the D League. Maybe start NBA CEO looking at players from Oz.

Reply #397631 | Report this post

Years ago

@Nutwork - Some of the back-up bigs in 99 where Phil Doherty, Mat Low, Blair Smith, Paul Denman, Craig McAndrew, Pero. We have always had dud big men at the end of rosters, in fact, most teams around the world do.

The old saying is if youre 7'0 foot you get five years to prove yourself and if your 6'0 you get five minutes!

Reply #397633 | Report this post

Years ago

I think a few Adelaide fans are over rating the soft Ginge.

Reply #397646 | Report this post

Years ago

Ian Crosswhite in the top 15?????

Reply #397647 | Report this post

Years ago

I think Flinders80 forgot about Oscar Foreman in his list of top 5 small forwards.

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UP North  
Years ago

weird that our Olympian doesn't get a mention - definitely not shooting well this season.

Reply #397652 | Report this post

Years ago

I definitely agree with Crosswhite being in the list. Next Kings game, have a look at what he does off-ball. Communication and defensive positioning. When given the chance, is actually a good offensive player. It's an unlikely selection, but warranted.

Reply #397660 | Report this post

Years ago

Neville should be right up there in the top 5 I reckon.

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Triton 95  
Years ago

This is so out of wack, Don't take it seriously.

Reply #397670 | Report this post

Triton 95  
Years ago

Gibsons stats make him the 7th best this season, This list has him as the second best behind Ervin, Go figure???

Reply #397671 | Report this post

Years ago

I thought this post was about the best number 15 player in the NBL...?

Reply #397676 | Report this post

Years ago

Not one player currently listed for the NBL wears #15

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Triton 95  
Years ago

I ment 7th best PG in above post, Gibson is defiantly not 7th best in the league.

Reply #397684 | Report this post

Years ago

Goulding probably in there somewhere too.

Reply #397700 | Report this post

Years ago

I thought this post was about the best number 15 player in the NBL...?


sorry, feel free to use one of these

Reply #397703 | Report this post

Years ago

I'd go this top 15 based on form AND talent.

1. Cedric Jackson
2. Kevin Lisch
3. Ben Madgen
4. Gary Ervin
5. Luke Nevill
6. Jonny Flynn
7. Adam Gibson
8. Seth Scott
9. Matt Knight
10. Shawn Redhage
11. Jamar Wilson
12. Daniel Johnson
13. Damian Martin
14. Thomas Abercrombie
15. Adris Deleon

Reply #397705 | Report this post

Years ago

Thought the article was quite balanced and included an emphasis on defense. Always going to create debate.
Comparing different eras is fraught with danger. Yesterday was always better. The bottom end of teams is in my opinion much better now than in days gone by.
Obviously only 8 teams contributes to this. The stars
of today dont seem as good as the past. Is that because they cant shoot, pass etc as well or is it the style of play and the emphasis on defence, not to mention 40 minute games. Look at the score lines in the past, Andrew Gaze ave 40ppg in a season, Al Green 70 in a game, what the! Also the league is much more transient so we dont get to identify with the imports or build "fan relationships" with Australian stars.
How much better is Brett than Gibbo. McKinnon/ Abbercrombie, Goulding/Rillie, Neville/Anstey Remember that Jason Williams was a starter on our last championship team. Is Jackson better than Ricky
Grace. When was the last time we had 4 or 5 top quality import guards.
This is more about marketing and perception.
Imports come here and are solid many go O/S and are very good.
Good to want better but dont knock the product, many of the young stars will become household names.
Easy to sit back and knock what are the best 80 playing in Australia at the moment.

Reply #397715 | Report this post

Years ago

"Gibsons stats make him the 7th best this season, This list has him as the second best behind Ervin, Go figure???"


Reply #397763 | Report this post

Years ago

Mystro is going to hate this comment, but when Mika Vukona makes the top ten list for the league, you know the NBL standard has severely fallen away over the past decade.

The sad thing is, I don't strongly disagree with the list. The league is poor overall now.

Reply #397778 | Report this post

Years ago

madgen defiantly deserves to be in top 3, and damian martin would proberly be somewhere up there to for defence, he is so fast at catching up and blocking its not funny.
and ian crosswhite is also up there because for a 6'11 guy, his 3 point shooting is great.

Reply #397813 | Report this post

Years ago

thedoctor, Vukona isn't close to the top ten, paul's just trying to generate discussion again.

Reply #397823 | Report this post

Years ago

the doctor: why would I be upset? I have posted here long enough to know that pre-season the top 10 players in the league are from Adelaide and then by halfway half of them are the worst and the other half are still the best.

As far as quality, the standard of Australians may have fallen away slightly (Worthington leaving, some struggling with form etc) but the standard of Imports is great and the NZ players have prob never been better (apart from Penney playing in Europe and Abercrombies slump).

Reply #397859 | Report this post

Years ago

Mika Vukona is a hack. Shouldn't get a sniff on this list.

Reply #397891 | Report this post

Years ago

yet most NBL Head Coaches would disagree with that satement AK-47 as would anyone who has had to box him out in the NBL, Olympics or World Champs.
I guess most of the Breakers are hacks who "suck" lmao.

Reply #397899 | Report this post

Years ago

Mika hasnt played at the Olympics but apart from that I agree with you 100% Mystro.

Reply #397904 | Report this post

Gaylord Focker  
Years ago

Crosswhite and Vukona amongst the top 15 players is bordering on laughable. As "role" players they have tremendous value for their D and off the ball stuff. This hardly qualifies them as top 15 players..

Tragardh and Johnson get the nod.. easily over these two.

Reply #397912 | Report this post

Years ago

Only if you just watch offence. Suggesting Johnson is as good as Vukona is one of the most laughable things ever posted! Ring Lemanis and ask if he'd trade Vukona for Johnson. Better still, ask if he'd trade Vukona for Johnson and Tragardh. Pretty sure he'd say no.

Reply #397919 | Report this post

Years ago

Spot on Anon, probably the two worst front court defenders in League. Major reason for their teams struggles. Sorry not probably, definitely.

Reply #397931 | Report this post

Years ago

Just quitely I think most NBL coaches would take DJ over a past his best Vukona!

Reply #397933 | Report this post

Years ago

^I don't. Coaches tend to be smart.

Reply #397934 | Report this post

Years ago

Just loudly, any team wanting to win a championship this year would take Vukona. A team with a three year plan might prefer Johnson.

Reply #397935 | Report this post

Years ago

Tragardh and DJ apart from being unable to defend a chair also both need the ball in their hands to influence the game, Mika does not. He also brings immense leadership qualities, have you seen how well NZ play after he rips them a new asshole in a time out?
I'm pretty sure that if Lemanis woke up stupid tomorrow and he cut Vukona, every single other Coach in the League would ring him and Bevo would be 1st.

Reply #397940 | Report this post

Years ago

i agree we are missing the stars of the league we had in yesteryear.

im not sure what kind of talent we had playing in europe at those times though?

were they of the calibre of anatoly bose, markovic, ingles, newley, baynes, kickert, ogilivy, anderson, maric , khazzouh, etc (missing some) ??

Reply #397946 | Report this post

Years ago

so maybe we just have a drain on our talent from strong europe competitions rather than not producing that talent anymore? im not sure to be honest as i cant recall aussies that played overseas in the nbl's heydays besides cattalini may have?

Reply #397947 | Report this post

Years ago

Longley, Anstey, Cattalini, Rogers, Heal, Andersen, Harvey, Bradtke, Rillie, Drmic, Gaze, Bruton and Jason Smith all spent some time overseas around that time. Usually shorter than now though, Bradtke and Rillie got cut.

Reply #397952 | Report this post

Years ago

the majority of them spent more time in oz than europe and certainly were here when they were still in their prime.

Reply #397967 | Report this post

Who ever says Vukona is a 'Role Player' is a retard.

Reply #397986 | Report this post

Years ago

phil, the term yesteryear probably isnt the right one. The NBL only really picked up in standard in the late 90's once it dropped to 11 teams and the first crop of youngsters from the Jordan-inspired participation boom established themselves in the league.

In a period from about 99-2002 they mixed with the established stars and the league really stepped up. But after that a lot of the legends retired or faded and quite a few players went overseas. A similar mix of veterans and young guns occurred around 07 and 08 but apart from that the there havent been times with lots of world class players in the NBL.

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Years ago

Also, the number of players overseas also correlates a bit with how many good local big guys we have.

Early 90s we had Longley, Bradtke, Dorge and a fading Borner and Uthoff. Longley was always OS, Bradtke had some time OS and the other three played in OZ. We didnt have a lot to offer Europe.

In the 2000s we had Bradtke, Anstey, Rogers, Pepper, Andersen, Melmoth, Dwight and Nielsen. Andersen was OS whole time, Anstey and Nielsen large part of the time, Rogers some of the time and Pepper, Melmoth and Bradtke played here while sadly Dwight retired early.

Now we have heaps of good local bigs - Bogut, Jawai, Nevill, Ogilvy, Baynes, Pledger, Nielsen, Andersen, Schenscher, Knight, Johnson, Khazzouh, Maric, Kickert and Crosswhite - so we have more overseas.

The difference is some of today's perimeter players (5 in decent leagues compared to just Heal and Gaze in the 90s) have been able to get and hold jobs in Europe longer than the likes of Maher, Harvey, Rillie, Smyth, Davies, Mackinnon, Saville etc prob because there are more European leagues and (for the moment) they have money and more Aussies have Euro passports.

Reply #398013 | Report this post

Years ago

Agree mystro , if u took vukona out of nz and put him in Perth they would be unbackable fav for the championship

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Years ago

if Perth had Vukona complimenting their already tough D, no one would ever watch a Perth game outside Perth, the other team simply would struggle to get 10 points a quarter.

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PHS 09  
Years ago

Mika Vukona is the dennis rodman of this league , what he does every game saves at least 10points . If he was 6ft10 he would be in the nba.

Any team would take him over a flashy point guard like flynn if they wanted to win a championship!

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