Two years ago

Talking Title Chances

It's the time of year to speculate, to woof, to talk trash before the real stuff gets going.

This thread is your chance to do so. Talk up your team’s title chances (or someone else’s team).

I’ll throw a spanner in the works to start. Everyone's talking about United and Sydney, but there's one team flying under the radar.....

FWIW if I was placing a bet right now, I’d go with Perth at $6 for the title. But I’m obviously not taking that bet, cos I hate Perth! It’s much more fun watching them and hoping they lose.

Sydney is my favourite, with United a close second, Perth a close third, and a few others who could challenge. But Perth is the value bet because:

- Proven coach and proven system. 3 of the last 5 championships.

- Bryce Cotton.

- Strong group of Aussies- many who have proven success with this coach eg: Martin, Brandt, Wagstaff, Jervis, and a couple of prospects with a few years of NBL experience behind them and are entering their prime years- Kay, Norton.

- Cashed up club- will keep playing with their import spots until they find what they want. At a minimum, you know if Terrico White doesn’t bring his A game they’ll replace him with a stud.

- Home court advantage where they get all the calls.

Topic #43860 | Report this topic

Two years ago

Got on Perth @ $6.50 a while ago. Clearly the best value imo.

Reply #703536 | Report this post

Two years ago

Starting with two imports only could be a blessing in disguise for Perth and Sydney at this stage ( not including Bowen as next star import).

Reply #703539 | Report this post

Two years ago

Best value is not to put on a bet at all.

Reply #703543 | Report this post

Two years ago

Melbourne won last year and are just even more incredibly stacked. Don't see anyone contending unless Bogut beasts/ stays healthy.

Reply #703545 | Report this post

Two years ago

Adelaide are no chance unfortunately.

Reply #703546 | Report this post

Two years ago

I think it's a four horse race- Melbourne, Sydney, New Zealand, Perth. Adelaide, Illawarra, Cairns and Brisbane will be competitive but I think it'd take a special set of circumstances for one to slip into the top 4. As much as I hate to say it, Adelaide on paper looks the weakest team to me. Joey will have to have them on point for them to make any noise. It's not impossible but I wouldn't put money on it. The young guys will have to come in and make an impact quick for them to do anything, and I just don't really see it.

I think Melbourne are favorites to repeat.

Reply #703549 | Report this post

Two years ago

I reckon Kiwis could surprise again as usual, and Perth for value like some have stated, will most likely add a stud at the halfway mark for the 3rd import and get to flesh out what they need.

Kings will get injured, bank it.

United will take out the minor premiership.

Reply #703550 | Report this post

Two years ago

Everybody's so high on United and, I hate to say this since I'm the resident United fan here and everything....but- United hardly has a better roster than last year.

Majok had a poor year last year but was injured at times and under utilised. His first 2 seasons proved that he's a quality backup big. I don't see Pledger as much of an upgrade at all.

Then you have Trist and Smith Milner IN...Tai Wesley and David Andersen out. Wesley is a major loss- unless Trist is better than everyone seems to think.

Plus, Boone is turning 34 in November and Barlow's 35 next month.

So- United's frontcourt has downgraded. If you simplify basketball into:


United has downgraded in the BIGS area. Wesley's post scoring, quality passing, improved defense, running the lanes may be sorely missed. 2 of the frontcourt are in their mid 30's.

In fact the only player in the entire frontcourt who is unarguably a starter level player in the NBL is Boone.

Their point guard and wing stocks have been boosted by the inclusion of McCarron - but it's very much debateable whether or not the roster as a whole is improved.

Yet everyone's signing "You're so High" about United.


Reply #703556 | Report this post

Two years ago

Build them up to come crashing down...

Seriously those are some good points when looked at a bit more closely. Will depend a little on how the new import fits I guess. Every team has changed a reasonable amount since last season, so everyone will need a bit of time to gel, maybe Perth ahead in those aspects as Kay and Norton have spent time on national duties with Martin, Brandt and Wagstaff? Terry "The Chemist" White should fit right in as he'll be our other scoring option and seems like a better offensive fit than Tokoto. Hoping he has the same killer instinct as Cotton, Ennis and Prather previously.

Reply #703559 | Report this post

Two years ago

Sydney outs : Ellis, Humphries, Thoseby , Tyler, Singh, Blanchfield.
Ins: Bogut, Kickert, Deng, Wear, Bowen, Adnam, Wilson

Clearly improved especially the frontcourt obviously age and injuries could be a concern.

Melbourne outs: Prather,Andersen, Majok, Adnam, Wesley.
Ins: Kennedy, Pledger, Smith-Milner, McCarron, Trist.
About level for me.

Reply #703561 | Report this post

Two years ago

United - 3 quality imports, proven record, proven coach
Perth - proven culture and coach
Adelaide - supprises everyone every year.

Kings - Good Australian players, 1 proven import, unproven coach

Reply #703562 | Report this post

Two years ago

@jumpshot classic that you forgot to even put the Breakers on your list. They're flying so far under the radar and their team is absolutely stacked. I would expect to see a Melbourne v NZ finals.

Sydney will be good, but carrying way too many injury risks to pick at this point.

Reply #703563 | Report this post

Two years ago

LV you forgot to factor in McCarron. His inclusion is a huge upgrade (over Adnam).

Also, you talk about how good Majok was a couple of years ago, but Pledger is a clear upgrade on what he provided last season.

United are the team to beat for sure

Reply #703564 | Report this post

Two years ago

My bad. NZ after Perth.

Reply #703565 | Report this post

Jack Toft  
Two years ago

Cairns would be rank outsiders. I'm not going to make a promise I won't keep, so I won't commit to running down Rundle Mall in a chicken suit if they win.

Brisbane. Should be right up there this year, but I think you'll find they are making up the numbers, just like a divorced, poor white fat guy on RSVP.

Breakers. Tough as nails, but I wonder if their Premiership Window (patio door) has closed and they run into that hardened glass sliding door like some toddler running outside to chase a dog.

Illawarra. Everyone's second team, but getting a second flag this season might be harder than getting into the Sydney housing market. I guess that's why Gongers live in Wollongong and waste their life travelling 2 hrs on the train each day to work in a cubicle job in Sydney to service a $700K interest only loan on some asbestos weatherboard shack in Thirroul.

If Perth haven't made top 4 they have failed. Should be around the mark, but rely too much on Damo. Put a lid on him and they are Pussycats

Sydney have no reason not to be in the GF except they are a team of Champions and all it takes is one of them to get their ego out of control and they are done. Plenty of opportunity to trash talk them on court. Anything less than a GF spot should be considered a failure.

Adelaide. Will miss Mitch Creek like a couple of demerit points on a driver's licence. Should be in the hunt for a top 4 spot, but likely to rue another season.

Melbourne. Defending Champions and have the cards stacked in their favour with the house dealing the cards. Anything less than a GF spot should be considered a failure.

For my money, I can see Sydney being fast out of the blocks, but collapsing in a mess at season's end. Melbourne are the ones to beat and will be in the GF. Probably a matter of working out who they will meet. I would say:

Adelaide: 13% chance
Brisbane: 5%
Cairns: 1%
Illawarra: 4%
New Zealand: 12% change
Sydney: 25%
Perth: 40%

Reply #703567 | Report this post

Two years ago

LV trying to talk down United's stacked roster, loving it.

Back: Ware, Boone, Goulding, Barlow, Moller, Hooley, Smith-Milner

In: Kennedy, McCarron, Pledger, Trist

Out: Prather, Wesley, Andersen, Majok, Adnam

Kennedy comes in with a better resume than Prather had, NBA experience and his team wins TBT every year where he was named the MVP too. McCarron is probably an upgrade on Wesley, Pledger is very much an upgrade on Majok, Trist purely from his preseason form is very much an upgrade on Andersen too.

So United have clearly upgraded on last year's championship team.

Reply #703568 | Report this post

Two years ago

@Jack " just like a divorced, poor white fat guy on RSVP"


Reply #703569 | Report this post

Two years ago

Yeah you have to factor in the coaching, cohesion and the winning culture/ confidence of coming off a chip win. They'll certainly have no issue scoring the ball too. As others have noted I think the biggest risk for this team may be if the shooting dries up, they don't have much else to go to inside, but not many teams do these days.

I put my money where my mouth is a few weeks ago and got United at $4.

Reply #703571 | Report this post

Two years ago

Good try LV, but United minus Boone and Ware looked pretty good against Sydney last week. Ware and Goulding is the best backcourt in the league and they have a great supporting cast that knows their roles in Boone, McCarron, Barlow, Moller, Hooley and Smith-Milner. Trist is a question mark, but I don't think it will matter even if he is bad. If Kennedy is good then that's just gravy for Melbourne.

I think it's their title to lose. Sydney's stars look too old and fragile to me and while Perth will be good, their imports will need to bring enough firepower to compensate for the lack of offense from their Aussie contingent.

Reply #703574 | Report this post

Two years ago

I'm certainly hoping the Kings can get it done this season, but age and coaching are question marks. United, have the runs on the board, and bringing in a guy like McCarron should ensure they don't have a let down in intensity.

Should be a Sydney vs Melbourne Grand Final, with Perth and NZ on the next level with a chance to upset that. Adelaide and Brisbane would be the next tier after that with a chance to make playoffs if they mesh well together. Cairns and Hawks will put up a fight, but just lack talent.

Reply #703575 | Report this post

Two years ago

Sydney starters old + big minutes because of a very shallow bench = very high risk of injury,

Their very shallow bench will be their undoing.

Reply #703576 | Report this post

Two years ago

Melbourne certainly look favourites at present but any side with Bogut, Newley,Lisch and Randle will be very good. There bench doesn't look that strong a lot will rely on getting easy wins to take pressure off their big four and allow rest. Perth look very good and all othe sides long strong as well, should be a great season.
Melbourne also have an extremely hectic start with games on east coast, 76ers and Toronto so could be fatigued early.

Reply #703577 | Report this post

Two years ago

I Loved your assessment Jack, priceless mate.

Of all that I want to talk about it's the Mitch McCarron situation, this time last year I was spruiking about how I'd take him over Mitch Creek on a Olympic/World Cup team (as 12th man) but now I just feel like McCarron will be the next Todd Blanchfield and we will wonder where his talent has gone, the big difference could be the coaching and the fact he will have time with ball in his hands more than Blanchfield ever did but I'll admit that I wouldn't be putting McCarron ahead of Creek anymore in a national team even if he can play 1-3.

I'm really looking forward to seeing Cairns and in particular Mike Kelly go as head coach, not just because they will have more freedom than in the Fearne days but because as a player I absolutely hated Mike Kelly but he has more than paid his dues in this country and I'm looking forward to seeing what he can do with his group of misfits... hopefully he can get the best out of Jawai and he's beasting all season.

Reply #703578 | Report this post

Two years ago

My bet is a Sydney vs Perth grand final series and I'll sit on the fence and say that the home team will win in 5

Reply #703579 | Report this post

Two years ago

Here's my take. Illawarra will struggle with no backup power forward

1. Melbourne United

*Ware / Hooley
Goulding / McCarron
*Kennedy / Moller
Barlow / Trist / Smith-Milner
*Boone / Pledger

2. Perth Wildcats

Martin / Norton
*Cotton / Steindl
*White / Hire
Kay / Wagstaff / Vague
Brandt / Jervis

3. Sydney Kings

*Randle / Adnam
Lisch / Wilson
Newley / Bowen**
*Wear / Kickert / Pineau
Bogut / Deng / Acouth

4. New Zealand Breakers

Illi / Weeks
Webster / *Richard
*Moore / Abercrombie / Ngatai
Wesley / Delaney
*Long / Majok

5. Cairns Taipans

*Trimble / Kenny
*Newbill / Kernich-Drew
*Hall / Kuany
Walker / Loughton / Young
Jawai / Loe

6. Adelaide 36ers

*DeLeon / Doyle
Sobey / *Moore / Teys
Drmic / McVeigh
*Wiley / Deng
Johnson / Froling

7. Brisbane Bullets

Cadee / Gibson
Gliddon / *Holt / Hiejima
*Gee / Te Rangi
Bairstow / Vukona
Hodgson / Magnay

8. Illawarra Hawks

*Jackson / Naar
*Jett / White / Nelson
Blanchfield / Conreaad / Grida
*Conklin /
Ogilvy / Andersen

Reply #703582 | Report this post

Two years ago

If Shawn Long arrives motivated the Breakers look equally as dangerous as Melbourne or Sydney.

Reply #703588 | Report this post

Captain Jack  
Two years ago

My rankings, using players (sats, etc), coaches, continuity



Sydney and Perth assuming they add a decent 3rd import at some point, if not they risk missing playoffs and probably not be title contenders but could still put up a fight in the SFs

Betting agencies have similar, just swap brisbane and NZ (not sure if that means anything lol)

I look forward to see how it ends up

Reply #703592 | Report this post

Two years ago

I think NZ are the real sleepers this season. They look pretty stacked on paper... but we haven't seen their imports in action yet

Reply #703596 | Report this post

Two years ago

Everyone seems to be forgetting two things:

1. Wesley was an all NBL 2nd teamer last season. He's been replaced by a guy who posted modest numbers in 2nd division Spain.

2. McCarron will be coming off the bench, playing around 20 minutes per game and- here’s the real key- taking minutes off guys who are better than him.

So, someone has to play big minutes at the 4 for United- and replace what Wesley brought. Trist, Barlow and Moller are the options. Are any of them up to it?

I don’t know- I have only seen bits and pieces of Trist so far. But it’s a fair question.

Meanwhile, if Casper and Goulding are fit, they could play 33 minutes a game. McCarron might be good, but how much will he improve United- compared to Casper and CG?

Another way of making this point:

- Trist will be playing minutes that Wesley used to play. That should be a big downgrade- I doubt anyone expects Trist to be an All NBL 2nd teamer.

- McCarron will be playing minutes that Casper, CG and Adnam used to play.

Obviously you’d rather McCarron ahead of Adnam....but last year Casper played 33 minutes a game. If his minutes decline to say, 26 minutes per game because Vickerman’s trying to work McCarron into the team, well, sorry, but United’s just downgraded for those 7 minutes.

United’s starting 5 has downgraded, and their bench has upgraded.

Don't get me wrong, I do think United will make the GF and maybe win it. But I think their team's had a slight downgrade- or perhaps is on par with last season, depending on what exactly Trist brings to the table. And most of their competitors have upgraded. So it won't be a cakewalk!

Reply #703598 | Report this post

Two years ago

And I agree with NZ being the real sleeper this year.

They are absolutely stacked on the wings.

Shawn Long looks pretty good- and leads a decent frontcourt alongside Wesley, Majok and Delaney.

Ili and Weeks at point is my question mark- but Ili's been improving and could be ready for a break out year with the responsibility of starting point guard.

Reply #703600 | Report this post

Two years ago

Best value is not to put on a bet at all.

The best days of your life are when you win at gambling, the second best days are when you lose.

Reply #703603 | Report this post

Two years ago

LV after all these years still reverse woofing it up.

Reply #703604 | Report this post

Two years ago

"The best days of your life are when you win at gambling, the second best days are when you lose."

The best days of YOUR life maybe.

Reply #703608 | Report this post

Two years ago

While it is true that United doesn't have as good of a positional balance as last season, the pure talent is at least as strong

Reply #703610 | Report this post

Two years ago

Also LV seems to be ignoring there's two ends to the floor. The lost Wesley who's a very good offensive player, but this team isn't short on offense.

Melbourne looked amazing on D using Moller and Barlow at the four, and that ability to go 'small' giving them versatility on d is a large part of my confidence.

Reply #703611 | Report this post

Two years ago

Can't go past NZ, the team is just well put together and properly balanced not like Perth (lacking offence), Sydney (average age of starting line up is 33/ injury prone) or Melbourne (too stacked at the 2 and 3 with no real 4/inside offence)

Also, is Coenrad not a 4? Similar playstyle and size to Loughten

Reply #703613 | Report this post

Camel 31  
Two years ago

Last 2 years Adelaide tipped to finish down near the bottom
and Perth lost every game because of the refs
I read on here...

Reply #703615 | Report this post

Two years ago

LV, I agree that Wesley is a significant loss, but as Greggo says, he's primarily an offensive player and Melbourne are not short on offence! I think they'll cover him pretty well with Barlow and Moller. Both looked good last week against Sydney.

You could also just as easily spin it that McCarron coming off the bench will give Ware and Goulding more rest so they are more likely to be healthy for the playoffs!

Reply #703627 | Report this post

Captain Jack  
Two years ago

Ware 30 mins/Mccarron 10mins
Goulding 30/McCarron 10
Kennedy 30/McCarron 10
Trist !5/Moller 13/Barrlow 12
Boone 25/Trist 5/Pledger 10

Looks awesome to me

Reply #703628 | Report this post

Two years ago

Sydney has improved their squad again, but Gaze can't coach, so it evens out.

Melbourne have gone backwards where it counts.
For them to win requires Goulding to play well, which makes McCarron redundant. He's given them depth and an alternative, which is good and will help along the way, but it's not that big of an improvement.
They've lost Andersen and Wesley, and replaced them with ???

Perth have actually improved, and have an import slot up their sleeve. Awesome situation to be in.

I think Adelaide will be competitive and surprise many.

I think NZ under Brasswell will suck balls

Reply #703633 | Report this post

Two years ago

Perth just dropped 100 pts without 5 of their better players... the offence looks more dynamic than I've ever seen it. Tom jervis is producing more than many 3rd imports, hire actually looked ready to contribute again, and steindl looked good! If mcarron can play at the three, united can slide kennedy to the 4 and play small, I am expecting to see more small ball than ever this season.

Reply #703680 | Report this post

Jack Toft  
Two years ago

"Perth just dropped 100 pts without 5 of their better players"

Yep, pre-season form is the benchmark...........not

Trial games are just that. trials. Lots of opportunities for bench and fringe players to have a go, but no coach in their right mind is going to unveil their secret new offence during a pre-season trial game

Reply #703683 | Report this post

Two years ago

Never said it was the bench mark, but their offence looked more dynamkc than it has in a while. I don't think they will struggle to score as much as they have in the past. Its just an observation and some feedback. Also deleon looked terrible, and i know it is preseason and all but im not sure he morphs into a stud for the actual season

Reply #703690 | Report this post

Jack Shit  
Two years ago

So Perth would have run an offense that they haven't practiced and won't use during the season? And some players try and some don't? Pre - season form not a problem for Adelaide - they don't have any yet.

Reply #703691 | Report this post

Two years ago

White has a minor knee injury but what about the other Perth absentees?

Reply #703693 | Report this post

Two years ago

Boomers lv, all didn't suit same as Adelaides. Wagstaff, brandt, kay and Norton

Reply #703695 | Report this post

Two years ago

Perth had 6 of their 11 regular players and Adelaide 8 of their 11.
DeLeon was shocking

Reply #703700 | Report this post


Reply to this topic

Random name suggestion for anonymous posters: Triton 56

Rules:You must read the Terms of Use. No spam, no offensive material, no sniping at other clubs, no 'who cares?'-type comments, no naming or bashing under 18 players. Learn how to embed YouTube videos or tweets

Please proof-read your post before submitting as you will not be able to edit it afterwards.

Close ads
Punch - insightful time tracking - Custom basketball uniforms
Beam Orders - a quick, simple order and payments site for your business.

Advertise on Hoops to a very focused, local and sports-keen audience. Email for rates and options.

Recent Posts

Invoicing clients? Stay productive with Punch, the insightful time tracker that earns you more.

Special offer: $30/month Pay $100 for lifetime access. Sign up now!


An Australian basketball forum covering NBL, WNBL, ABL, Juniors plus NBA, WNBA, NZ, Europe, etc | Forum time is: 1:17 pm, Wed 12 Aug 2020 | Posts: 842,484 | Last 7 days: 767