Years ago

A more sustainable model

The NBL needs a more sustainable model clearly. Would turning the league into more of a NBL-SEABL hybrid be a better idea, perhaps even merging with the NZNBL as well?

Instead of looking to field 8 teams with crowds of 5000 each, maybe look at a more teams with crowds of around 2000.

Maybe look for something like this:
WA - 2 Teams
SA - 2 Teams
VIC - 4 Teams
TAS - 1 Team
NSW - 4 Teams
QLD - 4 Teams
ACT - 1 Team
NT - 1 Team
NZ - 4 Teams

Bigger Country markets along with city teams could join to make a larger league of around 24 teams, with a strength similar to that of SEABL, possibly a little stronger.

Possibly reduce the salary cap to around 750,000, keep imports at 2. Everyone plays each other twice, so around 46 games in the season, two each week.

For instance an Adelaide team would travel to NZ and play a friday night and sunday fixture against two NZ teams to reduce travel.

or split into conferences for a 34 game season.

This competition would run throughout winter.

Eventually after sustaining this model, the NBL would then look to expand and create a new Summer super league with the major cities and possibly some Asian teams etc.

Topic #36628 | Report this topic

Years ago

I wonder, with BA having taken over the SEABL, if it's their plan to turn it into something similar. Almost inviting the top teams from states not already represented into the premier competition..

Obviously that leaves issues for the SEABL franchises that struggle at the moment, but I just wonder if BA have some plan they aren't sharing..

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Years ago

So, what the ANZNBL?

Going down this path has been covered many times on this forum in the past.

Not going to challenge the concept, the model is obviously just a starting point. It has merit based on low populations of Aus and NZ, it also makes sense fincnially and it could be sustainable for sure.

Whether NBL teams would also come back down a notch and agree in joining in on such a concept, not sure they would, but maybe just the knee jerk the game needs...

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Years ago

There are two ways forward:

1) The current situation is positioned for either a League owned by Bedat and Slepoy/Kestleman where they have control over the franchises and they appoint administrators to manage each franchise. This is the Big Bash League model. it doesn't have to be confined to Australia, but can move heavily into NZ and ASIA.


2) a purely semi-pro league where players work jobs and train in the afternoons. The best would head overseas and the rest would remain here and try their best in a smaller market

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Years ago


3) A restructured league with the top 3 - 4 players in each team highly paid locals or imports structured so the competition is more even and financhially sound. Linked to Associations or towns, the rest of the playing roster semi-pro or pro according to level and team balance. More teams, a bigger competition, more exposure, more interest, more media, more rivalry and passion and more of everything, less worry and less chance of financial crisis.

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Years ago

Another possibility with this model is for universities to partner with the league to offer partial/full scholarships instead of player payments?

It wouldnt stop all players from going to the US but surely a few could be convinced.

eg. Adelaide uni partners with an SA based team to offer two full time scholarships, then two young guns are offered a three year deal in which they are provided a full time university course as well as possibly board and a few hundred a week for spending.

Instead of signing the guy to a 70k deal, you get him for around 20k for university fees + around 25k in rent and spending.

Reply #519159 | Report this post

Years ago

In regards to Anons option 3:

This could be seen as:
Starters 90k each per year (450k)
6-8 60k each per year (180k)
9-10 scholarship holders (90k)
11-15 training players ($0)
Totalling 690k

To be honest I dont think the league would even drop that much from a budget like this and would give younger guys more of a chance.

If run through winter along side a Summer super league style comp the top players would surely be happy to hang around after summer for an extra 90k

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Harry Hackrein  
Years ago

2 teams in Perth!! No. The Wildcats won't allow on that.
Way to many teams across the board in all states.
The suggestion is great in principal, but the simple answer is to expand the SEABL. It's already in place and is the premier competition under the NBL.

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Years ago

What about a 20 team league, take bigger markets of the SEABL and create the New National league, and then the remainder of the SEABL plus possibly some other state league teams form a national division two comp?

WA - 2 Teams: Perth + ?
SA - 2 Teams: Adelaide + ?
VIC - 3 Teams: Melbourne + Geelong + ?
TAS - 1 Team: Hobart/Launceston or united Tas team
NSW - 4 Teams: Sydney + Wollongong + Newcastle + ?
QLD - 3 Teams: Brisbane + Cairns + Townsville
ACT - 1 Team: Canberra
NT - 1 Team: Darwin
NZ - 3 Teams: Auckland + Christchurch + Wellington

Everyone plays everyone twice for 36 games?

Reply #519176 | Report this post

Years ago

If the league folds i'm guessing 5 of the current teams will join the ASEAN league, I doubt a stronger league will come of the league going to sh!t, the opposite will happen.

Reply #519188 | Report this post

Years ago

They won't join the ASEAN League, it's SEABL standard at best.

Reply #519190 | Report this post

Harry Hackrein  
Years ago

There has been noise about a 'dodo' league for a while.
Yet when the teams applying for new licences, the Marvin won that discussion.
Certainly a single entity privately run league is a possibility. However unlikely.

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Years ago

Fantasy possibility of each club being owned by a NBA club in the future, same setup as the AFL do

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Harry Hackrein  
Years ago

Keep taking the drugs mate.

Reply #519233 | Report this post

Years ago

NBL even with the preseason only goes for a max 7-8 months yet they get paid fulltime salaries.

Put a league imposed cap on when the preseason can start and with the already shortened season it can be closer to 6 months and pay players accordingly.

Reply #519235 | Report this post

King Podge  
Years ago

For what it's worth, Cairns is sustainable and has been generating a profit for 3 years.

Reply #519236 | Report this post

Years ago

Don't worry Harry just dribbling shit, old shit just being rehashed over and over

Reply #519244 | Report this post

Years ago

It is a dodo league already

Reply #519246 | Report this post

Harry Hackrein  
Years ago

Good on ya Blitz, believe your fantasy shit. I am sure it will come to fruition in your mind one day.

Reply #519269 | Report this post

Years ago

Slepoy and Kettleman have offered to buy and own the league previously.

They'll get it cheaper now...

How much do people think the NbL is worth?

Reply #519278 | Report this post

Years ago

Loose change of the silver variety.

Reply #519314 | Report this post

Years ago

NBL even with the preseason only goes for a max 7-8 months yet they get paid fulltime salaries.

Put a league imposed cap on when the preseason can start and with the already shortened season it can be closer to 6 months and pay players accordingly.
The NBL is still progressing for another week or two. I'm only aware of the Hawks, but they require players for pre-season from late May. That's closer to 10 months.

That said, I agree with your second line and preventing coaches from requiring players for an early pre-season could help give them options.

I don't think adapting the SEABL is the right course. Better to keep the NBL and add something new/elite than try to get people paying $25/game to attend SEABL.

Reply #519327 | Report this post

Jack Toft  
Years ago

Basketball could follow the lead of the netball and have a trans-Tasman thing happening.

Have a two tier competition. The elite number of teams, then a "reserves" league. For a town like Adelaide it would mean say the Sixers playing one week, then the "Buffaloes" playing the off week so that there was always a game at the Arena.

For teams playing in the "Reserves", you could organise a pro/rel thing happening every X years where if a team in the reserves say finished in the top 3 for 3 years, then they had the right to challenge the bottom ranked team for their place, or the right to go up to the top league. Alternatively, any team in the top league that finished in the bottom 2 for say 3 straight years have the right to drop down if they wanted too.

The salary cap would vary between the leagues, and the "Reserves" say limited to one import.

Reply #519337 | Report this post

Years ago

The current 8 Elite teams can't even get enough sponsorship, but you expect businesses to through money into a reserves competition to allow those teams to pay their players and travel etc.

What do you think a major sponsor of an elite level team will do if that team is relegated to reserves. I think they'll keep their money associated with a team in the top league.
I also think most of the players from a relegated team would move to a top level team - becasue thats wherer the money is.
If the Hawkes were being relgated this year then Foreman, Martin, Cooenraad, Erivn, Davidson etc would all be snapped up by the elite level teams or by team being promoted from the reserves.
Why isn't there more of a push for a second team out of WA. More than twice as many people in Perth attend NBL matches each week as they do in any other city. Wildcats have a business model that works. Would local competition make it work even better?

Reply #519341 | Report this post

Years ago

So the league and member clubs are having trouble being sustainable so recently shortened the season so it's even more of a mad rush to the finish line then before.

Especially come playoff time the league acts as if they want it over and done with ASAP like you would ripping off an old band aid. Semi final crowds are always poor but no brightspark thought to have a week off between the last round and playoffs.

Also with the ever reducing timeframe for the league to play in the status of players and other employees is still pro/fulltime so they get paid the same therefore overheads don't reduce. Yes let's reduce our income by packing games in more tightly (less chance of casuals sampling a game) over effectively two months less than five years ago, but retain all expenses at the same amount!

Sustainability of clubs is a hot topic yet now they shorten the season, so it ended on 8 March 2015. The new season will probably start on the weekend of 9-11 October 2015. That's SEVEN MONTHS they aren't operating in, i.e. no revenue - ARE YOU KIDDING ME. Yet at the same time players are still being paid equivalent to full time salaries when the season was eight months, with many getting another gig in the offseason to gain extra income because there is an incredible amount of free time available. Nice for the players (no hate there - get it while you can)... until the league falls over due to income-expenses gap. Are the club owners for real?

At least the Wildcats came out and said more games/longer season is required and they are the only ones who know how to make money so it is a extremely valid point.

It boggles the mind the stupidity of this league.

Reply #520204 | Report this post

Years ago

There's exactly the same number of games, they're just played over a shorter period. It doesn't make a difference to the number of tickets available.

Reply #520209 | Report this post

Years ago

"At least the Wildcats came out and said more games/longer season is required and they are the only ones who know how to make money so it is a extremely valid point.

Other clubs have made money in the past. Just because the Wildcats are profitable now does not give them an iron grip on being right.

Reply #520211 | Report this post

Years ago

So the answer to an unsustainable league is to add a lot MORE unsustainable teams???

Once you have a national league, a lot of your overhead costs become fixed. It's no use shaving a few hundred thou off the salary cap if your travel and overhead costs don't come down.

As discussed elsewhere, a 2nd team from NZ should be a priority. But trying to bring in a stack of NZNBL teams would simply bankrupt everyone with travel.

As discussed elsewhere, a divisional approach might work, because the majority of potential 2nd division teams would be based in the East, drastically reducing travel costs.

Keep in mind that ultimately the power teams have a lot of sway. So any proposal to downgrade the NBL is NEVER going to be considered. The Cats and Breakers will force the NBL to 6 teams before they agree to lower the salary cap

Reply #520227 | Report this post

Southern Joe  
Years ago

I have always hated the talk of divisions &/or conferences.

We don't have the population or even the interest to sustain a complex comp.

Look at the AFL, NRL & even the A League.... they are one comp with everyone in the same league... no confusing conferences etc. This isn't UK where a 3rd tier soccer game can still attract crowds of 10k plus with major sponsorships.

I remember when the NBL was hot. It can be again .... just need grounding followed by sustainability ... not whizbang fly by night "concepts".

Get back to basics & market this game properly. Show ads of people having a good time watching high quality athletes. Make people feel like they OWN a stake in the team through loyalty and tribality to YOUR team. This is how the top leagues are successful.

Reply #520228 | Report this post

Years ago

The difference is that the AFL makes squillions from TV and sponsorship, and so can afford to prop up the smaller clubs, plus the majority of power clubs are raking the money in. In the NBL I suspect only the Cats and maybe breakers are truly profitable, and that is only a recent thing. Even big city clubs with a reasonable following struggle.

The point of a 2nd division would not simply be segregation, but to make that division cheaper and therefore sustainable for the smaller markets.
The Hawks have failed both on and off the court this season. Put them in the 2nd division, with a reduced salary and overhead cap, plus without the costs of travelling to Perth, Adelaide, and NZ. Not only could they stay afloat with their smaller crowds, they would be competitive against similar teams.

As for fans not liking it, I'm not suggesting that Cairns be FORCED into the 2nd tier. But ask fans of the Crocs and Hawks whether they would prefer their team folds or play in the 2nd tier.
Then ask fans in Newcastle, Canberra, Gold Coast, Geelong, Launceston and Hobart if they would like to have their NBL teams back playing in the 2nd tier.

Reply #520300 | Report this post

Years ago

A two tier competition sounds interesting to me, but I can't help thinking it would end up being pretty much SEABL and NBL, with not too much chance that a team can get up into the NBL from the second tier.

I could be wrong however, and I am not totally against the idea if it was thought through and introduced after some seriously careful and concise due dilligence, also some heavy marketing pre-season.

What do we think it would look like? Anyone prepared to have a go, or are there too many of us against this concept? I suspect current NBL power team owners wouldn't be keen...

Reply #520311 | Report this post

Years ago

I don't think pro/rel works for points already outlined (player movement, uncertainty for fans), but tiers could work. I have my half-baked suggestion here.

Shaving $x00k from each of the base team's costs through salary cap would have more of an impact than lowering travel costs. No idea what they *do* budget, but even allowing $10k per away game for a team means you have to knock off 10 games just to save yourself $100k.

$10k / 15 players and staff = $666 each to cover return flight, accommodation, van hire and per diem. Accounting for some sort of flight and accommodation provider sponsorship, that shouldn't be miles off?

Tweaking the salary cap for the smaller teams but giving the big teams an outlet to go bananas has to be the way if we don't want to keep losing teams but still provide a good number of opportunities to our players.

The anon talking about better use of the year is right. Makes sense to make more money from the players you're already paying. The compression of the season only really works for attracting imports.

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