What will the capacity be at SBC once the upgrades are done? (assuming the vic government that promised it gets re elected)
A few games there would be good to establish roots but a central venue in the city - Melbourne Arena - would be preferred for a commercial and attendance point of view.
Theres only 2 grounds where 9 Melbourne AFL teams play home games and the two soccer teams share the one ground so its not like its unusual in Melbourne.
If there were, say, four teams located around Melbourne I would add the South East part but with only two teams and very little likelihood of more around Melbourne, keep it simple. The team names distinguish themselves from each other. Melbourne United and Melbourne Magic.
Exciting times for basketball, especially in Victoria.
In fact with,
The new NBL team in Victoria,
$120M for basketball in Victoria,
The COE to be moved to Victoria, and
SEABL to be dismantled to bolster the Victorian league,
it seems like a great time to be in Victorian basketball.
Basketball already very big and very well supported in Victoria.
Please spare a thought for the good people in Mt Gambier who appear to be on the verge of having their Pioneers pushed into extinction.
The Pioneers have punched very much above their weight over recent seasons - maybe some of those very powerful Victorian noses out of joint?
Make it South East Melbourne Magic, which will "unite" the old Magic fans. Plus the NBL gets those 2 championships back.
Re: naming them Tigers - you can't for 2 reasons:
1. Larry owns the IP for the name "Melbourne Tigers" and he wouldn't give it up.
2. The Tigers are actually the same franchise as United (they have 5 titles, not 1). If anything, United should revert back to Tigers.
Keep a look out for Tassie getting the 10th licence for the same season soon.
I don't really like "Back to the future", South East been there and done that
I get the idea of differentiation. But SE Melb is United territory too. Any Melb team with acumen would focus on Sth East. It's where the majority of Melbourne lives.
And only 2 games at SBC isn't much.
I'd prefer they used Margaret Court for the other games too. That would mean genuine differentiation and building their own identity
I've said all along, I'm a Melbourne bball person. I'll go to a game or two- just like I went to some Dragons games even though I was die hard Tigers. But Hisense doesn't do it for me. Never has. It's just not a great stadium.
Maybe the answer is, if United keeps growing and they average 9000+ this year they can move to RLA.
Why has Margaret Court arena seen so little NBL action over the years? It surely has a much better configuration for basketball viewing than Hisense, has a good capacity (7,500), in a good location, obviously as good as Hisense. Isn't the atmosphere and basketball viewing superior at MCA?
Hisense can fit over 10k, but let's face it, that extra 3k are really poor seats for basketball viewing. I also think there can be some advantage in going with a slightly smaller venue anyway, as you can market 'sell-outs' in a way to create more urgency to buy tickets and bolster up more membership appeal. I can only assume that Melbourne Park charges a similar amount for rent, if not more, of MCA compared with Hisense arena.
If they plan to base the team in South East Melbourne, it should be called South East Melbourne or at very least pick an area there to name it, ie Knox.
Personally, I like the idea of the South East Melbourne Magic. If you use the name you have an inbuilt fanbase to leverage off. I understand there are still Magic fans til this day who won't even entertain another team, such as their loyalty.
Also, I do think they should have their own venue, either at the revamped place, or if United get big enough, at Hisense with United moving somewhere bigger.
Either way, there was never another option and it was always going to be Melbourne. This plan is not new. LK wanted a Melbourne team and just needed someone to bankroll it, and he found his man. The groundwork would have been laid at least a year in advance to now. They would have known all of the upcoming deals and grants coming their way and they were smart to capitalize. So Tassie fans have no real reason to feel dismayed, because this decision was never about them.
I'd like to see import quotas raised now. When we head to 9 and 10 teams, we're going to see some more minutes for the Teys and Te Rangis of the world and nobody got time for that.
Anybody legitimately think they'll be able to use the name Magic?
Remember the issues with Townsville being the Suns and having to change. The Gold Coast fans voting for them to be called the Heat, but the club being unable to use the name.
Zero chance Orlando would allow it to happen. Whatever they'll be called it won't be Magic.
Yes, exactly the same way Orlando prevented them from using Magic the first time, and Washington prevented Brisbane from being the Bullets, and Sacramento prevented Sydney from being the Kings, and Atlanta prevented Illawarra from being the Hawks, and Kentucky prevented Perth from being the Wildcats.
I'd love the Magic to return but I want to have them really incorporate the whole St.Kilda/southern Melbourne Saints and Eastside Spectres too (and maybe even the Titans if the can) and retire some jerseys and be able to display the Saints championships (I'm not sure if United do this but it's not expressed to us living elsewhere).
Lol @ Magic trademark, I seriously doubt that
Magic, hmmmmm, makes me think of the South Eastern part of Melbourne and reminds me of Space Jam, magic Mountain and the Monstars - wait a minute I may be onto something here...
Seriously though, why not follow the Melbourne theme and fight for the whole market cap like United, if it has to be South Eastern Melbourne it must be a new identity, the old fans will come back regardless, but they could go with a new Melbourne team and still identify with the South East.
The difference is they won't lose the South East if they go with Melbourne, because the other way around they may lose support from the North west!
Townsville had a trademark dispute with Phoenix which prompted the name change. Gold Coast elected not to use the name Heat because of objections from the NBA. It's a clear part of both clubs histories.
And the naming may not be an issue. But maybe the reasons the Kings and Hawks have those names is because somebody beat SAC and ATL to the Australian trademarks way back in the day.
But this will be a new club in 2018 when the NBA is truely international. I'd be amazed if the trademarks weren't picked up by somebody after SE Melb merged.
Here is a list of past trade marks including just "Magic":
South East Melbourne Magic did have a trademark on their logo with just the word "Magic" associated with it, but it appears to have lapsed in 1996, which seems odd considering they merged in 1998.
As for the Suns/Crocs change, I recall someone with close affiliations with the Townsville Crocs supporting koberulz's claim above that the trademark issue was not the true reason for the name change.
Here are trade marks with only "suns":
You CANNOT trademark a name. You trademark a "trademark" or for want of a better term, an image.
So yes, the NBA has a couple of trademarks incorporating the text "Magic", a basketball, and stars. One of the trademarks also incorporates the text "Orlando."
For that reason the SEMM logo (also trademarked but lapsed) was very different.
For want of a better description, it was more like a shield shape, featuring the letters M,A,G,I,&C with the G reversed, with a small portion of a basketball at the top and the text South East Melbourne.
So to put it simply, they can call the new team whatever they like (and whatever the NBL will accept) and provided their graphics, logos, etc, do not look similar to existing trademarks they will be fine
Why are they building an 8000 seat show court at SBC if this new team is play most of their games at Vodaphone areana. The Labour Govt. spends $80 mil. on a show court for 3 games a year . I'm not sure a SEABL team would be able to fill it.(no SEABL any more because BA stuffed that up) so who is going to use this new show court
"Melbourne Magic" is a trading name owned by CLB Ops Pty Ltd (http://www.abr.business.gov.au/ABN/View?abn=17623542718). Same group that owns the "Tasmanian Devils" trading name.
My suspicion is that CLB Ops is a company set up to run the Champions League 3x3 competition. So don't expect the new NBL club to be called the Magic - unless the new club owner wants to pay CLB for the name and CLB wants to sell it. That seems unlikely.
"Melbourne Dragons" is a trading name being used by a Futsal club and an Ice Hockey club but I couldn't find it being used by an existing basketball related entity. So it would probably be allowed for use as a trading name by a basketball club.
I love where pro basketball is at the moment, and long gone from the dark days and is shining brighter than what many called the 'good old days' yet as much as I am pleased for the next generation to have opportunity to make money and a living from the game sadly the NBL its owners and the league may of burnt too many too many times.
I was a magic fan as a kid, LOVED the team when they were the spectres, excepted the name change to magic and kept on being a fan, even the merge with the north melbourne giants didn't hurt (kinda was my second team) but the folding of the Vic Giants the emergence of the dragons and the constant change of the landscape have me checking out .... I will follow and watch pro hoops here but I can't just attach myself to something new everytime
I've stuck with the local leagues, the SEABL the Big V etc and loved it, the passion the connection is much like those magic days - I always thought my kids would be magic fans etc etc but struggled even with the United Product (and its a good product) but deep down its just rebranded Tigers (the darkside to Magic Fans)
Good luck to the new franchise, good luck to the new supporters but I have been burnt too many times with league I will just be a neutral and watch from the couch
@PersonalFoul, I had the same feeling when the Dragons saga went the way it did, for different reasons i dropped off the NBL and was happy to stay with my Supercats in the SEABL and follow the winter league along with the NBA while watching the NBL struggle in their lack of direction, leadership and consolidation.
My thoughts were that we had some sort of rivalry between the Tigers and Dragons in Melbourne which did capture the Victorian market and was heading towards a real deal two-team duopoly which could have been quite strong in supporters and sponsorships moving forward.
That didn't work out, for many reasons, however that doesn't mean a re branding and restructure won't work either. Lets hops that the NBL get the structure, leadership, direction and model right this time and we can enjoy what we are all wanting to see, a strong and viable national competition.
[ I always thought my kids would be magic fans etc etc but struggled even with the United Product (and its a good product) but deep down its just rebranded Tigers (the darkside to Magic Fans)]
To me this illustrates the difficulties with the whole move to United.
On the one hand, people like this feel like it's re-branded Tigers
On the other hand, I know plenty of ex - Tigers people who despise LK and United (Cram being an example on this forum).
On balance, I now believe the move has *probably* been positive- but any view is ultimately just speculation. It remains sad that there's so many people on both sides who feel that they'd rather remain alienated from tangible support of the NBL.
But LV, any short term alienation is exactly that, short term.
A new generation comes along and all of a sudden they are walking to games and don't even know what the Dragons, Magic and Tigers were all about, or what the heck us dinosaurs are on about mate...
Time is a great healer and people will move on.
You just have to look at how quickly the A-League has caught on (what was the NSL again?) or how much the kids love the Big Bash (what is that thing they call test cricket anyhow?)!
@bear totally agree I think that is very true with the NBL the new generation is right there and don't know of the 90s other than crazy team kits and retro footage.
I don't think the new franchise is doomed at all in fact its in a better spot than previous with the current growth and marketing potential.
But when I get stopped in the stadium or asked if I'm excited about it (being that old basketball stalwart) the honest truth I'm not that excited about yet I feel I should be, like a lover scorned!
Yeah, I got that a little when Geelong's AFL team won three premierships in 5 years, all of a sudden I wasn't quite as passionate, but now I am getting back into it a little more.
I think in time you may find something to like about a team, a player or something they stand for, their character or ethos, that intangible thing that strikes a chord in the back of ones head and triggers an emotion.
Then, you just never know, you could all of a sudden come back with a vengeance.
I was almost getting sick of the NBA's monopoly stranglehold by one team or two teams, yet with Ben Simmonds and the young 76'ers, I am back on board and loving it...
Have faith in the game mate!
"A new generation comes along and all of a sudden they are walking to games and don't even know what the Dragons, Magic and Tigers were all about, or what the heck us dinosaurs are on about mate..."
This is true to a point, but a key problem with the NBL has always been keeping fans, not gaining new ones. The constant churn of teams hasn't helped that at all. Its sad that there are around a dozen NBL championships won by teams who no longer exist, mostly in Melbourne.
You can talk about the younger generation not appreciating the "old fogies" but they simply have no choice.
Football fans (of all codes) will proudly talk about their teams past successes and traditional rivalries as a way of connecting the generations. Who doesn't love the stories of the oldies who finally got to see the Doggies win a flag a couple years ago?
If you've ever gone to see historic world teams like The Cubs, Red Sox, Man Utd, Real Madrid or the traditionally successful AFL or NRL teams you should appreciate that.
Unfortunately with the NBL having a track record of owners willing to throw that away, it can never build any of its own.
For what its worth I'd love to see the new team be branded as the Magic. There are still lots of people with very fond memories of that team, despite it only lasting a short time. Like it or not, that period was absolutely still the real golden days of Aussie basketball. This current time is fools gold.
The constant churn of teams hasn't helped that at all. Its sad that there are around a dozen NBL championships won by teams who no longer exist, mostly in Melbourne.15, five of which were won by non-Melbourne clubs (Launceston, West Adelaide, Canberra x3). The 15 includes the four Tigers championships.
For reference, here is the linked to the Orlando Magic trademark:
And here is the old SEMM trademark:
As you can see, very different, hence why they were able to coexist.
I don't know exactly how similar it would need to be before you would run into strife, that would likely depend on how good your lawyers are.
As you can see the trademarks do include the words. You can also include numbers, letters, shapes, and various other things, although as you can imagine it gets increasingly complicated.
Point is they are not exclusive. So the Orland TM does not stop other trademarks using the word Magic.
Registering a Business Name is different, but its also important to note that registering a Business Name doe NOT protect your IP.
"Calling the team "Magic" would surely limit your opportunity of picking up disillusioned former Tigers fans.
Going something original and even losing the "South East" title would maximise the potential support
Totally agree! Maybe even having Victoria in the name would encompass defunct Melbourne teams basketball fans and also be recognised worldwide.
No, not Victoria, stick with Melbourne I reckon because that's where they will be playing and training for the most part.
Calling them Victoria "whatever" just loses the impact and identity that Melbourne brings while you can always promote to fans in Victoria you still need to have your base, which is Melbourne in this case.
Plus, any new team from regional Victoria will surely be based in that city, it's not a sensible idea to come out saying we are Victoria when that is such a broad brush compared to nailing your identity in Melbourne.
Victorians will decide for themselves regardless...
Lots of pros and cons with using the Magic moniker. Probably need a revamp as it wouldn't be the same team.
Most sporting team mascots are animals, although this means nothing these days. Bullets, Breakers, 36ers, United, Kings. Is there a animal local to SE Melbourne? (apart from gangs?)
Have they released a colour combo yet? United have strategically taken the navy blue and white state colours. I would expect that SEM may wish to take a couple of colours from the local south-east teams (eg the red represents X, etc) to get some local buy-in from the local clubs.
I would get a marketing consultant in as well. Merchandising has to be ramped up and is the way to get the cash flow happening. Years ago, when the Port Adelaide AFL team was being talked about there was a lot of talk about Port Pirates. Heaps of merchandise opportunities there with patches, hats, parrots etc Didn't work out. I think a new franchise needs merch sales. What the heck is a breaker? jail breaker?
This team could actually be really good for the competition and if done well show other teams what they need to do. Or, egos could get in the way and create a balls up.
I don't think the new team should worry too much about trying to pick up disillusioned Tigers fans. As one myself, I certainly have no intention of supporting the new team. Though I'm more likely to pay for a game ticket to one of their games than United, it'll only ever be as a neutral fan when my friends' teams are in town.
If the owners feel that the Magic connection will help them connect with their local area, they should run with it.
Breaker: 'a heavy sea wave that breaks into white foam on the shore'
And i'm pretty sure that a successful business person (real estate, private equity, venture capitalist) who already holds a major stake in another professional sporting club is going to be aware that marketing and branding are important.
Worst thing they could do is align themselves to a specific association though. Basketball is tribal in Victoria. If they take colours from Nunawadings, you isolate everyone else. If they take Knox's colours, same thing again.
They either need something new, unique, and dynamic, or to bring back the Magic name and branding.
South East Melbourne Magic Dragons??
Not perfect, but could be a way of showing respect to the last 2 NBL championship teams in that region and linking it into the fan base.
Logo could incorporate both the old franchises logos too.
United claims to be the stakeholder of all Melbourne basketball history, including the championships of the Magic.
Yes, the Magic did fold 20 years ago but people are still aware of their existence. If United tries wearing their uniform in rivalry round again, while there's a new Magic team, it'd be a farce.
I doubt there are many original Magic fans from 20 years ago who dislike United, and would willingly return to NBL fandom to jump on board the Magic bandwagon, but aren't sufficiently interested enough to follow a random new team.
If you go for something brand new, you're more likely to get disillusioned Tigers fans on board than if you used the Magic name.
I see no real advantage of bring back "South East Melbourne Magic" but there are a couple of downsides. Small downsides, to be fair, and not insurmountable. But downsides nonetheless.
[United claiming to be a team that represents all of the previous teams, while still claiming the Tigers championships is already a farce. Wearing Magic uniforms while Tigers retired jersies hang in the rafters is a farce.]
Not if you think of them as a merged entity- which is essentially what they are. Or a merged identity representing Victorian basketball's contribution in the NBL.
You might not like it. But it's no more farcical than the Titans being a representation of the 4 clubs that led to their formation.
I think they will go with a new name. Far too many burned bridges in Victorian NBL history. The 90s were great and the Magic were dominant in a golden era, but the 2000s sucked. After the Dragons shut down, victorians largely gave up on the NBL and the NBL gave up on having more than one team in Melbourne after years of mergers and collapses.
The clubs from the past are dead. United has taken the somewhat unofficial ownership of all past Victorian clubs and made them "united" together, albiet forcefully.
This new team should start over with a new name and identity. There's enough backing this time to make it successful. Maybe if they align with an afl team (if this is this still a thing?) then they will be known by their afl affiliate. Otherwise, start fresh.
Personally I'd like to see something like Melbourne Spartans or South East Spartans... a nod to Melbournes greek community (without it being an ethnic club) more like a Boston Celtics type acknowledgement where they named the team after after the city's strong Irish roots. Just an idea...
Remember this LK....
"Club Chairman Larry Kestelman said it is hoped the United franchise will bring together fans from all the previous teams.
"It was never an easy decision to move away from the Melbourne Tigers name," he said.
"However, we want to provide a united basketball club, for sports and basketball lovers in this State.
"Now we will unite as one side, with one voice, as Melbourne United Basketball"
So how do you sell this team now? Melb Non-United?
With the club set to play its first NBL season in 2019-20, Greer has a lot of work ahead of him in terms of constructing the roster.
"We're already starting to look at the local talent," Greer said.
“It’s a little difficult because obviously we can’t talk to currently contracted NBL players, but we are certainly planning our first roster. A name that has been circulating is Mitch Creek, and there is no doubt we have interest in him.”
Tommy Greer on the NBL’s return to South East Melbourne
LV, as Zodiac pointed out, the Titans (and the Magic before them) were a merged team, with players and officials directly coming from each of the previous sides.
United was a change of name and then simply "claiming" the previous heritage.
It'd be like the Demons in the AFL saying they can no longer make it work as the Dees, so change their name to Melbourne United and then say "we now represent all of the Fitzroy and South Melbourne Fans!" Farce.
It was a farce from day one, selling it to non Tigers fans as a brand new team and to existing Tigers fans as carrying on the same legacy.
You can't have both.
Further to that, the introduction of a second Melbourne team, and the way the NBL in particular is making as many links to the Magic as possible, is evidence that they've realised changing to United did not get the stink of the Tigers from the club enough to get the former Magic fans.
What former Magic fans? Do they even exist? It was 20 years ago.
Does anyone actually believe that there's more:
- Magic fans from 20 years ago (and/or Dragons fans from 10 years ago) who dislike United but would return to support a new Magic team
- Disgruntled Tigers fans from 4 years ago who would be offput by naming the new team Magic
Very unlikely I reckon.
United is not actual "merger" in the technical sense of two clubs joining, but they are a merged identity. My point was that there's nothing farcical about the specific idea of claiming championships and jerseys of clubs who competed against one another.
Ultimately, this is speculative but I think, 4 years later, it's now hard to argue that the move didn't help achieve the desired aims that LK specified at the time.
That's not to say that the Tigers couldn't have achieved the same successes off the court. Perhaps they could've. We can't know for sure. But I think we've seen enough to say that the move hasn't been a disaster for basketball in this city. Far from it.
United isn't a merger in *any* sense.
They don't hang the banners, jersies etc of any of the other clubs, they simply claim to "represent" them. They created a new identity to distance the club from the stink of the Tigers name in the hope this could bring in fans of former clubs. It is the same thing that the Razorbacks tried when they changed to the Spirit.
There is absolutely something farcical about telling Tigers fans that you're still the same club, only to wear the heritage jersey of the team that beat them in the 96 grand final. There is absolutely something farcical about telling fans of the Magic/Titans/Giants/Dragons that this is a new club for all of Melbourne, yet only hanging the banners and jersies of the Tigers.
Again, the fact that the NBL is so obviously attempting to connect the new club with the Magic shows THEY believe there are former Magic fans who didn't get in to United that might get on board with the new club.
By the same token, many of the Tigers fans who left in 2014 are the types with a sufficient interest in history and the club legacy to dislike the Magic moniker.
I think for example of a friend of mine who used to lead the Tigers cheer squad in the early 2000's, aka Roar Energy.
She despises LK and United. (And I think her extended family, eg: her sister and her sister's kids, are in the same boat).
I'd have to check with her to be 100% sure of this, but I would've thought that all of them would be more likely to support a random new team, than the "Magic".
[There is absolutely something farcical about telling Tigers fans that you're still the same club,]
They've never really claimed this.
[There is absolutely something farcical about telling fans of the Magic/Titans/Giants/Dragons that this is a new club for all of Melbourne, yet only hanging the banners and jersies of the Tigers].
I'll concede you this one point. It's inconsistent for United to wear Magic jerseys in history round, but then only hang the Tigers jerseys and championships at Hisense.
I know at least a couple dozen fans of the Magic and and Titans who could never look past the Tigers past of United that would consider supporting the new club, and naming them the Magic could sway that even further.
Conversely, I won't be supporting the new club regardless of what they're called, but would certainly respect the new club giving a nod to some much needed history.
[I know at least a couple dozen fans of the Magic and and Titans who could never look past the Tigers past of United that would consider supporting the new club, and naming them the Magic could sway that even further]
I barely even know a couple dozen real, genuine NBL fans!
From my experience over the past 20+ years of playing (and sometimes coaching) basketball in this city, over 90% of people couldn't care less about NBL.
Since we're speculating about people from 20 years ago who could possibly return to support a new team or might not vs others from 4 years ago who might return or might not, then we're talking about small numbers on either side of this equation.
Oh I wouldn't mind at all. I'm an NBL aficionado who likes my history.
But that's me personally- that's irrelevant. I'll go to a couple of the games of the new team to help them get off the ground irrespective of what they're called.
My question is only whether the Magic name would be a net positive or a net negative in terms of branding and support.
I believe net negative- but I also think the negative would be small.
I don't think we are talking small numbers. There was a massive amount of young Magic fans in Melbourne's south-east in the 90s, most of whom will now have families and, judging by the demographics of much of that area, have disposable income.
The key will be in the effectiveness of the marketing, but if you have a large amount of parents with an attachment to a brand, and their children are now into basketball, which many children in the south-east are, there is definite potential there to create an instant connection for two generations that a new name couldn't.
There were young Magic fans in the south-east in the 90's.
Ie: A few thousand.
Let’s call them Group A.
- Many now support United- likely a big number, given United averaged 8,200 per game last year. Which is probably more than any Melbourne NBL team in history- even in the mid 90’s the Tigers and Magic wouldn’t have averaged above that.
- Some have lost interest in NBL and/or basketball and would be unlikely to return regardless of what the new team is called. People’s interests change in 20-25 years. How many interests did you have as a teenager that no longer interest you?
- Some whose kids aren’t interested in basketball. This is a big one. Sure, basketball is popular but if your kids aren’t interested then you’re pushing a barrow uphill.
After all of this, Group A has indeed dwindled to a small number.
Then there’s other people- let’s call them Group B.
- People like my former Tigers cheer squad leader and her extended family- who all dropped NBL support in 2014 and wouldn’t appreciate the Magic name. The time thing here is a big factor- this is only 4 years ago. People’s interests and circumstances change much less in 4 years than they do in 20-25 years.
- People who think the NBL is a bit of a joke, and returning a defunct franchise is a bit off putting. "Oh the Magic? Hang on, aren’t United meant to be like...Uniting all those clubs? What? The NBL is such a joke. When’s Lebron’s first game for LA!?".
Both groups are fairly small I reckon, but I give the nod to Group B being slightly bigger.
I’d be interested to know if LK/Choudry have done any real research on this. Perhaps they have- given there’ll be millions of dollars going into it.
And- to be fair, Cram and Paul, if you're saying you know plenty of people in Group A- maybe Group A is bigger than I had thought.
Lets just focus on one thing here.
You accept that there's likely thousands of Magic fans who refused to support United because of the Tigers history, but then still claim the group of Tigers fans disillusioned by the United move is bigger (in the thousands at least) yet still feel that the United move was a "success"?
To me it would seem another farce to factor in a team to appease Tigers fans when the owner of their own club refused to do that.
Not sure where I said I accept that there were thousands of "Magic fans" who refused to support the Tigers?
A "Magic fan" is a bit of a non entity really, an extinct creature, a relic of the past.
I find it hard to accept this idea that there are thousands of them, waiting to come out of the woodworks if, and only if, a new team with the same name is now formed.
"There were young Magic fans in the south-east in the 90's.
Ie: A few thousand.
Let's call them Group A."
You then went on to assume that "many now support United" based purely on United's average crowd size as opposed to any ACTUAL evidence. The fact is, while United's crowd numbers are good, there is NOTHING to suggest in includes any significant number of disaffected fans of any of the former 90s teams.
The more likely scenario, which has been true for 25+ years of the NBL, is that they are new fans, something the NBL has been good at attracting at various stages in its life, but never good at keeping.
Of the 20-odd former Magic/Titans fans I know, none support United now. The same is true of all of my friends who supported the Tigers. This is not a scientific sample, sure, but its at least marginally better proof than you looking at crowd numbers and figuring that must mean that "likely a big number (of Magic fans) now support United"
Yeah fair enough- I'm speculating. That's obvious and I already admitted it.
On the other hand, you're basing opinions on a small sample size of your friends who are mostly disaffected fans of ex-teams.
No one really knows.
Which is why I'm not too fussed either way, and I'm just hoping this new team is a success.
I'm not a native Melbourne person, and with a second team entering it's a bit of a shame we don't have the Melbourne Tigers name still in the NBL.
With that said, I think the logic seems pretty clear for what has occurred:
> LK has an interest in his Melbourne team and the league succeeding
> The pragmatism of a new name to reach the broader melbourne market, increase membership and crowd numbers outweighed the romanticised history and longevity of the Tigers name
> It's reasonable to say we've seen KPI's show the type of improvement LK was looking for - these are important to the success of the club and league
> As league owner, there's a strong business case in a second Melbourne side situated in South East Melbourne to again broaden the market, melbourne basketball stakeholdership and revitilise a rivlary to draw entertainment and increase appeal
It's very easy to go "well now there's a second team, why did they change from the Tigers in the first place?", it's a matter of the timeline really, to have a business case for a second Melbourne side, the first one needed to improve its numbers and that occurred as part of the name change and broadened market.
You might say "this would have occurred with the Tigers anyway, it just needed resources put in?". I'd imagine when they made the decision to change the name, it was based on what's going to assist them achieve better KPIs at that point in time ie what's the best moves to make now, not assuming a league boom and the introduction of a second Melbourne side.
There's a little bit of retrospective thinking being applied in the criticisms, and perhaps a bit of rose tinted glasses on the nostalgic and romanticised history. I don't think Melbourne were that big of a club throughout the last 15-18 years, I don't think the size of the market that care about the past of the Tigers enough to bail on the club is in any way comparable to the size of the market they are trying to capture now.
"The people that I know that were Magic fans all have school aged kids now and would love to have them follow the same club they did when they were young. They mostly live in the South East too."
Exactly. Any hook that will get people to a club that a new name wouldn't is worth investigating. If the NBL believe they can tap into that audience - and parents is a key audience - then I'm not against them going down that path. It would mean, unlike with a completely new name, you don't have to start completely from scratch.
The other potential with using the Magic name is increasing the publicity you get from mainstream media, with many of the decision makers having been around during the 'boom times' for the NBL in Melbourne. That connection wouldn't hurt either.
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