Years ago

NBL considering 60-game season, 7 nights/week

After the NBL visited Tasmania and spoke of a 44-game season involving 12 teams, Michael DiFabrizio chased up Paul Cochrane at the NBL and confirmed that 60 games per team in a 16 team league was an option on the table:

"There is scope for us to go to 60 games per season under a 16 team model," Cochrane said.

“And that's consistent with what other league’s are doing around the world. You look at the NBA and they’re playing 82 regular season games. The schedules are busier in Europe as well. There is consistent fan engagement.”

“At the height of our expansion project that creates the possibility of games being played seven days a week. That’s incredibly exciting for the growth of basketball in Australia and for the fans.”

Full article

The NBA obviously has an 82-game season. How do fans approach that with regard to season tickets? Do many go to every game? Is it more normal for people to buy 10-game packs and the like?

44 games takes the home season from 14 games to 22 and 60 bumps that to 30. You need some serious commitment and spare time to make that many if you were a busy person!

Topic #33524 | Report this topic

Years ago

Exactly Isaac. It would be overkill

Reply #453081 | Report this post

Years ago

Well, how does the NBA make it so it's NOT overkill?

I follow most NBA scores when I can (don't have time to watch them) and check the boxscores of a few each day. I would happily follow more NBL stats (especially if they were easier to follow, say, like ESPN's site). It's just the number of home games and cost of season tickets that could become an issue.

If the NBL went from 14 home games to 22, that might be manageable if the season ticket price didn't jump much. Or if they went from 14 to 18 and then 4 more were played regionally, existing fans wouldn't really take the hit then.

Reply #453083 | Report this post

Years ago

Would it mean a raise in player payments too, due to 'more work' being done?

Reply #453085 | Report this post

Years ago

Sounds awesome to me, not sure how it would work re season tickets, id probably try to sell a variety of season tickets

ie full season, 15 games, 10 games, 5 games, 3 games

and see what is popular and allow for all types of fans from hardore go to every game to the more casual fan who enjoys going to 3-5 games and a few imbetween.

Would be interested to see what the NBA does.

Could also help teams become more profitable, as if many of the costs are fixed ie the same regardless of the amount of games, eg players salary, the extra games if around abouts current average crowds attend would lead to a reasonable amount of extra revenue, and if the per game costs dont add up to more than the revenue increase could lead to a more sustainable league.

I love the idea of more teams, even in regional centres with smaller venues, even if it means a smaller salary cap to make it work also.

Something I and a couple of others were in favour of on here last year i think, so very happy the NBL is taking this sort of direction and atleast giving it a shot.

Reply #453087 | Report this post

Years ago

Venue availability would be a huge issue as well. I know that the Blaze always had to deal with the GCEC being booked - sometimes over a year in advance - by other groups. 6ers shouldn't be worried here but everyone else would I'm sure
60 games IMO would work best in smaller boutique venues rather than large entertainment centres. Aim for crowds of 2-3k (larger for certain target games during the season and finals) and get the product on TV screens in Prime time - whether it's FTA or pay tv or a combo of both doesn't matter just get it out there!

Reply #453088 | Report this post

The Situation  
Years ago

Reply #453090 | Report this post

Years ago

agree - every team should play 2 games a week at a minimum

Wednesday through to Sunday

could work well if we have a few more teams
and gives a clear path for development players

Reply #453091 | Report this post

Years ago

Isaac - I don't follow NBA any more and certainly don't understand their business model. In my ignorance, is live attendance their main game or is it TV audience. I'm led to believe they now have a global TV reach which means most of their fans actually watch games remotely and not live. That might affect how they manage the program?

Re NBL 7 days a week - you'd probably get a better standard of refereeing. They would have to be full time, like the players and they would be doing it several times a week. Presumably, you'd also have paid scorers and other game personnel as not many volunteers could make that sort of commitment, I'd have thought.

What would it do to local leagues - junior, social, district - if there's a local NBL game 3 or more nights of the week? We had the energetic and fairly polarised debate earlier this season about the 36ers' clash with juniors on a Friday night. That sort of clash would be happening every week for social leagues, church basketball etc. Would it kill some of those competitions? Is that okay?

Reply #453094 | Report this post

Years ago

Teams could manage 12 games a month
Teams are currently playing /training around 6 months already
Players are contracted for 12 months

Players would 100% rather play more and train less so they aren't working any more under this proposal than they currently are.

What costs do go up are travel , accommodation, per diems which are significant. Not to mention more stadium hire means that your break even point is a lot higher

All offset of course if a media deal makes it all work

I would gladly pay $150 per month to Fox if it meant they had a game on every night

A media deal somewhere around the 30 mill per annum in cash would be needed to make it work.

Reply #453095 | Report this post

El Diablo  
Years ago

pfffhh like drawing blood (money) from a stone (empty pocket)

Reply #453096 | Report this post

Years ago

They're on the right track although the new group seem to be all talk. Basketball generates its revenue by sheer amount of games played due to indoor stadium size restrictions. Each individual game is less of an event compared to say a football code match.

NBA/NCAAB can't match the turnover of the NFL/NCAAF even though gridiron is played only once a week for a few months a year. NBA grinds weekdays in addition to weekends to make ends meet. Weekdays provide it with attention during gridiron season as that sport dominates the weekend. The same comparison can be made between the NBL and the football codes here. Gotta work those weekdays.

Only way to boost cash inflows is with quantity. The key aspect to making such a season work here is to have a group of TV partners willing to air it and pay for it. Otherwise no go. I know Fox would like to fill out weekday nights, plus FTA has digital stations now.

Reply #453097 | Report this post

Years ago

PeterJohn - yes, TV generates way more revenue. As KB3 and myself mentioned the key is signing a lucrative TV deal otherwise it's a pipedream.

Reply #453098 | Report this post

Wildcat Fan  
Years ago

44 games is a lot, but do-able. 60 games is too many for our market, and I cant see it working for the NBL, or in an Australian sporting landscape, even if it is unique.

It works well in the NBA and EPL because they're huge big brand teams with global appeal, and they play in much larger cities with 3 or 4 times the population, plus there is a lot of tourist attraction with going to an NBA game. The NBL does not have this.

I don't like the idea of the NBL gearing towards smaller stadiums and crowds either This certainly wouldn't work in markets like Perth and Adelaide, and possibly Sydney, as a lot of momentum in building crowds would be lost.

Reply #453099 | Report this post

Years ago

Historical question: what was the max. amount of games played in a NBL regular season per team? Mid-2000s I believe there were 32 games for a stretch of that decade.

Reply #453102 | Report this post

Nathan of Perth  
Years ago

I like the idea but teams would have to get very creative with the membership/season ticket management.

I think the 7/week thing is from looking at what the BBL is doing.

Reply #453103 | Report this post

Years ago

I remember there being 33-game seasons. Don't recall anything higher.

Reply #453105 | Report this post

Nathan of Perth  
Years ago

My wife's first reaction was "no!" when I mentioned 60-games; not a good sign!

Reply #453106 | Report this post

Years ago

Season tickets should stay the same.
As I am sure the players would agree that they would rather be playing than training.
So if you are still paying them to train playing a game that counts for something would be more preferable.
The cost of a season membership would be more enticing and maybe encourage more members (those that usually work on weekends).

Reply #453107 | Report this post

Years ago

There is no way that Perth could pack out the Arena for 30 games so that means a return to Challenge for some games. A structured system might see Perth play 12 games out of Challenge and 18 at the Arena with different memberships for each.

Reply #453112 | Report this post

Years ago

The Arena can be modified to seat 8000 or so, which might be a better option.

Reply #453113 | Report this post

Years ago

What about the extra operating costs that each club will incur. I can't really see the regional based teams being able to cope. I would rather see same amount of games played in a shorter season date range

Reply #453119 | Report this post

Years ago

Flinders80 - that's where a TV deal is crucial to sustain it.

koberulz - 33 sounds right.

Nathan - my first reaction to you having a wife was "no!" - not a good fit for a sports lover.

Reply #453121 | Report this post

Years ago

Also if you are going to have a bajillion games per season you need to entice patrons with extras like theme nights in addition to the sporting contest as they do in the NBA, NHL & MLB. MLB with its super long season really exploit this with bobble head nights, post-game concerts and bring-your-pet days. The longer a league season the wackier they get to try and entice you.

Reply #453122 | Report this post

Years ago

Given that we have never had more than a 33 game season a 60 game season sounds a bit drastic. I would go with 40-44game season first.

Reply #453123 | Report this post

Years ago

That's the plan. 12 teams, 44 games in 2016, working up to 16 teams, 60 games.

Reply #453125 | Report this post

Years ago

I'm in two minds about this plan. As a junkie I'd watch every night but I fear what it would do to my life.

Reply #453127 | Report this post

Years ago

Amazing isn't everyone has always complained about not enough games, and now there may be too many.
Steven read what the topic says. 44 games 12 teams.
I am quite unsure where the other 4 teams will come from however to get the 16 teams combo.

Reply #453150 | Report this post

Years ago

How f>%kin boring. 60 games. With 8 teams, and 2 that won't next season ? NBL needs to burn out, and start again...

Reply #453155 | Report this post

Years ago

Wow people can't or won't read.

It's [4*(x-1)] teams with a 2 & 2 home/away split.

(where x is the number of teams, duh)

44 games with 12 teams.
60 games with 16 teams.

As per what we have at the moment, being 28 games with 8 teams.

Reply #453157 | Report this post

Years ago

"Amazing isn't everyone has always complained about not enough games, and now there may be too many."

You do realise different people have different opinions?

PJ, the big-drawing NBA teams have strong crowds and even sell out their season ticket allocation I think? But TV is a big deal.

In the NBL's case, their best bet with increased game volume would be a mix of things - cheap season tickets, variety of other passes, regional games, themed games, cheap tickets for low-drawing teams, etc. Just seems like a bigger gamble to me than a concentrated TV-oriented season with big market teams.

Reply #453165 | Report this post

Years ago

60 games is overkill.. I even think we have too many games in the season we have already considering the league size. If you have 16 teams maybe everyone should play eachother 3 times intead of 4 and knock that down to 44 for 16.

As for every day of the week.. your going to be playing to empty stadiums on many days. Thurs/Fri/Sat/Sunday... Ok, Monday Tues Wednes? No... I just don't see people going in the early part of the week.

Reply #453177 | Report this post

Years ago

two key questions:

1) Has any research been done to demonstrate that the public (basketball-attending public) would support such an increase (through bums on seats)?

2) What do the broadcasters think?

No broadcast money, I fail to see how the NBL can pay for it!

Reply #453180 | Report this post

Years ago

I do agree with GWB about each (in 16 team comp) playing each other 3 times I should have put that in my last post "sorry anon" lol. That is what I meant by 60 games being too much, anyway moving on I like the idea of Thurs to Sunday games but I would even be tempted to try Monday night games providing we get a great tv deal

Reply #453184 | Report this post

Years ago

Ok I'm surprised that nobody has brought this up yet... If we are going to have THIS much basketball then we will have to stay 10 minute quarters or everyone will be going to bed in the early hours of the mornings trying to watch every game regardless if its pay tv or free to air or

Thanks NBL for thinking bigger and whilst I don't agree with every day of the week, I believe the teams should be vying to play Rememberance Day, Australia Day, St. Valentine's day, New Year's Eve etc. regardless of what day it falls on and really go with a theme and perhaps work with major sponsors for giveaways and make it a real outing that everyone will remember.

I'm already a little scared by this based on the fact that I spend $45/seat x 2 and 30 home games without a price hike is $1350 x 2... And you just know Perth will play finals so all of a sudden I need a high paying job that understands why I'm leaving early

The current schedule is for a 23 week regular season so if we went 25 weeks and pushed back preseason to 1st week of October (nobody watched anyway) then I'm sure 44 is possible but 60 and 1 home game for 30 weeks straight wouldn't work for so many and 2 home games a week doesn't work when Perth arena charge $90/seat for gold section...

As for players, imports are paid on a per month basis so regardless of the amount of games or training sessions in that period of time they will be paid the same, but as for local and even development players then Isaac would know better than I would

Reply #453192 | Report this post

Years ago

I'd prefer a knockout (fa cup) type tournament added with midweek games first. With an early non televised aba teams included round.

Reply #453193 | Report this post

Years ago


TV rights underpin the whole thing. You need a sexy product to sell.

Attendances, whilst important, are nowhere near as important as getting the rights deal.

If no one ever went to another AFL game and games were played in front of 50 people but everyone was watching on TV and they kept the TV Rights deal, the game would be OK.

Attendance money/membership is cream on the top.

Reply #453195 | Report this post

Years ago

Im not sure I like the smaller stadium idea.. most small stadiums don't look particularly professional.

Reply #453205 | Report this post

Years ago

One would hope that with more venue hire the rental fee would decrease

Reply #453207 | Report this post

Jack Toft  
Years ago

I think the NBL need to consider it, but consider the motivation behind why the move would be necessary and what benefits it would bring.

I think the NBA like the MLB run a game series to maximise the exposure as well as get bums on seats. A team can fly into a city and play a few games in a row. It builds some excitement if the first games a close and the final game is a cliffhanger. It could be a way to get more bums on seats. Would a spectator go to all games? Not sure. I would be interested to see how the spectator profile fits with the NBA vs the NBL. In the NBA maybe you have 50% of spectators that see 10 games or less in a season (16%). In the NBL you may have 50% of spectators that see 5 games or less (33%). If there is an average crowd of 5,000/game (70,000/season), then does that mean there are 10,000 interested people. By having more home games, would the average crowd say drop to 3,000, but because more home games you have 90,000 visits/season? Would that extra 20,000 visitations mean more revenue, or would the seats be discounted to get attendance?

The more advertising and promotional opportunities/activities there are for a sponsor, the more corporate support there is.

I think a 60 game season could be possible, but you would need to understand why the NBA have mad it successful and would have a careful business plan to ensure it works. Fools rush in where angels fear to tread.

Reply #453215 | Report this post

Nathan of Perth  
Years ago

The size of a venue in this case would be secondary to how easy it is to get to, and get out of.

Reply #453217 | Report this post

Years ago

This could be the move that destroys the NBL.. they need to think a bit deeper about this.. if they want to play out of smaller venues they may find that the product looks uglier on TV which will undo there whole aim on the matter. I don't think Perth will want to go back to Challenge stadium, and I dont think Adelaide should play out of Apollo.. If the product looks ugly on TV your not going to get people tuning into 60+ games of it.

Reply #453218 | Report this post

Years ago

Have a look at this handy guide....

Hawthorn, as a guide, took $13m from gate and membership - nearly 20% of its revenue, hardly cream on top.... and if their attendances and memberships dropped, their sponsorship would likely crumble.

Reply #453221 | Report this post

Years ago

Lets get the 40 odd games underway before the 60 games guessing starts. I don't believe anyone has said all games will be televised anyway in either length of the seasons.

Reply #453226 | Report this post

Years ago

Ho the difference is the other $44 mill out of their $57 mill revenue comes from things like sponsorship, marketing, merchandising and afl distributions, which the tv exposure are highly responsible for delivering.

The problem is most nbl clubs especially regional ones would derive a much larger part of their income from ticket sales and a lower percentage from sponsorship, merchandising etc which a bigger tv deal and more games would help with.

I can't imagine clubs receive anything from the nbl in financial support, yet afl got a minimum $6.6 mill each wow! Good on the nbl for trying to grow the pie in the most cost effective, financially rewarding way possible.

Reply #453230 | Report this post

Years ago

Too many of you are obsessed with the notion of being at every home game. If the schedule increases significantly you would be purchasing game blocks rather than the entire season, as sold in the NBA.

Proud - agree with you on public holidays, the summer season covers all the key ones yet aren't utilised at all. Christmas Day is waiting for someone to bite. The Australian sports economy is so backwards.

Come to think of it: Christmas Day. Boxing Day. New Year's Day. Australia Day. Good Friday. Easter Sunday. ANZAC Day. NBL is played through all seven of the major holidays. In addition Proud makes a good point about some of the other days that aren't necessarily holidays but have an easy theme to market with: Rememberance Day. Valentine's Day. April Fool's Day. Probably more.

Reply #453232 | Report this post

Years ago

What utter bollocks. There was a 9 day hiatus over the Xmas period by the NBL.

Reply #453235 | Report this post

Years ago

well i was speaking on the train to the wildcats game about how Perth play Adelaide on Valentine's day so it will be interesting to see if we have more than just kiss cam... and do i take my missus or my best mate who is a 36ers supporter lol.

As for 'being obsessed with the notion of being at every home game'. I have been to every home game at Perth Arena and I have come to know those around me on a first name basis and see the love and loyalty they have for their team even on Thursday night games (which for some reason both are against Cairns)and I think it will be interesting to see how the challenge of extra home games affects those around me let alone the rest of the 10k that turn up every match.

I want to make it clear that I love that we play every team at home twice... the chance to see Paddy Mills, Johnny Flynn, AJ Ogilvy, Sam Young type marquee players twice is just what puts the excitement into the league where AFL and NRL lack as you aren't always guaranteed of seeing for favourite teams play one another live!

Reply #453240 | Report this post

Years ago

st patricks day

Reply #453242 | Report this post

Years ago

"What utter bollocks. There was a 9 day hiatus over the Xmas period by the NBL."

Yep what a joke.

Reply #453245 | Report this post

Years ago

KR, I understand the economics.

But, 453195's point was extreme, suggesting the AFL would be fine if only 50 people turned up to each game because of the TV revenue - i realise they were not serious about this, but they were serious about membership and spectators just being cream and that is just not true - the AFL clubs put a lot of work into membership sales in particular.

As I pointed out, without the crowd and membership numbers then sponsorship revenue would fall, and merchandise would suffer dramatically as well. Lots of things help build the portfolio, not just TV.

The AFL clubs have diverse revenue streams - many of them healthy.

Reply #453265 | Report this post

Camel 31  
Years ago

Like to see my teams stats once a week but cain't. Wouldda liked 1 game over christnas, but, after 14games everyone tooo tired

Reply #453273 | Report this post

Years ago

Crusty , 0n an empty Bong says: Our ( Adelaide ) people cry when we have a two on a weekend schedule. The rest of the world play a mans game 4 or more games a week! Think about it , then crusiffy Crusty. How many games are played per week in the BIG League? A 60 game season for the NBL would take 53 weeks and then the crying session would begin.

We just love the setup as it is! Such great games on the weekend. Such excitment .

Crusty says::: Sydney/ Perth finals

Crusty dislikes Sydney. Crusty loves The 36ers.

Crusty is a very good predictor.

Reply #453303 | Report this post

Years ago

60 games is a bit too much.

Reply #453309 | Report this post

Years ago

Crusty's drugs aren't working.
The 12 team comp will be over in 3 month's. 53 weeks you should get a refund on those drugs man

Reply #453316 | Report this post


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