LV
Two months ago

NBL History and NBL 2024

In the United vs NZ thread I've been commenting how Perth and Melbourne are the two great NBL powerhouses, having been contenders for most of the past three decades.

(Here: https://www.hoops.com.au/forum/51800-breakers-united/#p936173 )

There’s load of other history on the line with the 2024 championship, which is fascinating for people like me, who take an interest in these things. This thread is for that.

But firstly to elaborate on Perth and Melbourne.

Perth famously made the playoffs 35 years in a row from 1987 to 2021. In 2022 they missed out despite posting a 16-12 record, finishing 5th in the last season before it became top 6 (putting aside debate about whether the "playoffs" is now top 6 or still top 4).

Between 1989 and 2009 Melbourne made it 20 seasons out of 21. They had a down stretch during late Tigers era and early United era, but have now made 6 of 7 (missing the play-in on percentage in the last game of the 22-23 season, by 2 points with a 15-13 record after injuries curtailed their campaign).

Since 1990, Perth or Melbourne has won the championship 16 out of 34 seasons. One of them has played in the Grand Final in 23 of 34 seasons.

But interestingly they’ve only played off in 3 Grand Finals, with 2 of those being fizzers. Only one quality GF in NBL history for the competition’s two powerhouses!

There’s still daylight between Perth and Melbourne with 10 titles to 6, and Perth could extend their dominance. I’m hoping Melbourne closes this gap in coming years with the ongoing Vickerman dynasty!



PLAYERS

Cotton is chasing Gaze as the NBL’s GOAT. And that debate is increasingly resembling Jordan vs Lebron. It’s a very different comparison in some ways. The eras are the opposite, and Gaze didn’t switch teams every 5 years. He’s known for his loyalty! But there’s similarity at the core- the ruthless, clutch winner against the longevity, the individual accolades and the statistical records. Jordan was 6-0 in the finals and Cotton becomes 4-0 if they win this year.

For now Gaze holds the ascendency. Possibly Loggins too. But it’s getting closer.

Cotton could win his 3rd Grand Final MVP, taking him ahead of 2* winners Grace, Maher, Anstey and Jackson.

Jesse Wagstaff could become the winningest player ever with championship number 7. Right now he’s tied with David Stiff, CJ Bruton and Damian Martin.

Has an NBA champion ever subsequently won an NBL title? Bogut narrowly missed out. Delly and Clark can do it.

Clark could win his 2nd title with his 3rd club in quick succession. Marcus Timmons did similar in the late 90’s-2000. If Clark really wants to follow in Timmons footsteps, he’ll need to suit up for 3 more NBL clubs before his career’s done.

All the Melbourne greats won two titles (Gaze, Bradtke, Anstey, Copeland) and CG43’s aiming for his 3rd.

Some big names looking for championship number one- Brad Newley is 39 (this weekend) and retiring after a long, illustrious career spanning Europe, the Boomers and the NBL. Delly is Australian basketball royalty.


COACHES

Vickerman can win his 4th title. He’s signed til 2028 and chasing Goorjian and Gleeson (6 and 5). He wins a title every 3 years so he’s due (2015, 2018, 2021...).

Scott Roth is 60. Would that make him the oldest championship winning coach?

Has a coach ever taken over mid-season and won (Tatum)?


CLUBS

If Perth makes the Grand Final, it’ll be 10 grand finals in 15 years and 7 titles in 15 years, which is astonishing for an 8 - 10 team competition.

JJ’s aiming for their first title. There’s been very few professional sporting titles in Tasmania- Hobart Hurricanes haven’t won one, and Hobart Devils never did. Although the Tasmanian cricketers won a few Sheffield shields. And the Launceston Casino city won the NBL’s 3rd season in 1981!

JJ's winning in their 3rd season would become the fastest of all active clubs. Adelaide won in their 5th season in 1986.

Illawarra could become the first regional team to win in 23 years. With Cairns never having won a title in their 26 years, and Townsville having zero titles before they left the competition in 2016.

Sydney could equal Melbourne on 6 championships and become the 3rd team to 3 peat, after Lemanis’s NZ 2011-13 and Goorjian’s Kings 2003-2005. They’d be the first to do it with different coaches.

If Melbourne, Perth, Sydney or NZ win, it’ll be 15 years in a row shared between those 4, dating back to South Dragons winning in 2009. If we ignore South Dragons and only include active clubs, those 4 can make it 20 out of the last 21. Being 2003 - 2024 and excluding 2007 (Brisbane). Although the NBL has a reasonable equalisation system, it’s beginning to feel like VFL footy where Collingwood, Carlton, Essendon and Hawthorn won regularly (Collywobbles notwithstanding) and minnows like St Kilda, Fitzroy and Footscray never won anything.

If Brisbane win a playoff game of any description it’ll be their first playoff win since 2008, having made playoffs once since re-joining in 2016 and losing 2-0 in the semifinals in 2019.

Plenty of history on the line!

Anything else worth adding?

Topic #51808 | Report this topic


LV  
Two months ago

Note on the title stats- Bradtke won another with Brisbane and Anstey with South East, but I was referring to with Melbourne

Reply #936176 | Report this post


hoopie  
Two months ago

Great work, LV

Reply #936178 | Report this post


Q Anon  
Two months ago

36ers started in 1982 meaning they won in year 4

Reply #936189 | Report this post


LV  
Two months ago

82 was year 1 and 86 was year 5, ie their 5th season

Reply #936191 | Report this post


NBLTigers  
Two months ago

Good history, I can't see Perth winning but it depends how they regroup during the Fiba break. The break till the semifinals could be 3 weeks so clubs have a long time to rest players. Can be a positive or a negative. Are the play-in games starting on 28 February roughly?

Reply #936398 | Report this post


Anonymightymouse  
Two months ago

"putting aside debate about whether the "playoffs" is now top 6 or still top 4"

This argument has finished. The NBL has announced Illawarra and Tasmania have secured a finals berth this year (the NBL post-season has always officially been called the finals) despite the fact they have to play in the knock-out games to make the semi-finals.

Reply #936400 | Report this post


Perthworld  
Two months ago

They should be called elimination finals instead of "play-ins".

Reply #936401 | Report this post


Anonymightymouse  
Two months ago

Agreed, but the current NBL HQ like copying the NBA.

Reply #936404 | Report this post


NBLTigers  
Two months ago

It's just copy right what the nbl are doing. They basically took the exact format the nba use of their seeds from 7-10 bracket format.

Play-in game are finals games since they say finals spot.

Reply #936409 | Report this post


NBLTigers  
Two months ago

Perthworld the 5th-6th game should be called elimination finals, then the play-in game should be called quarterfinals.

But seriously since I like finals more than the regular season. Why can't we just copy the British Basketball League’s playoff format of top-8 so we can have an even finals series like the NBA.

Quarterfinals (best of 3)
Semifinals (best of 5)
Grand final (best of 5)

Best of series should be the host hosting games 1-2 just like the EuroLeague best of 5 series. It’s the best for travelling so two games in 2/3 days.

Reply #936410 | Report this post


koberulz  
Two months ago

"putting aside debate about whether the "playoffs" is now top 6 or still top 4"

This argument has finished. The NBL has announced Illawarra and Tasmania have secured a finals berth this year (the NBL post-season has always officially been called the finals) despite the fact they have to play in the knock-out games to make the semi-finals.
The finals aren't the playoffs, though. And there are no semi finals anymore. There's the play-in tournament, then the playoffs, then the championship series.

Reply #936412 | Report this post


Perthworld  
Two months ago

Agreed, but the current NBL HQ like copying the NBA.

No doubt.

Reply #936414 | Report this post


NBLTigers  
Two months ago

Most people I speak to say semifinals and grand final series. Last season they did change the wording but it all becomes confusing. It use to always be Elimination, Quarters, Semis etc. I'm sick of the nbl copying American ideas.

Reply #936553 | Report this post




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