Monday, April 27, 2009

Does Eddie Own The 36ers?

It might not be as easy as "A, B, C", for the Adelaide 36ers. Does Eddie groves own the team as well?

This article will raise a few questions over the next few days. Article courtesy of Fox Sports.

New Basketball Australia chief executive officer Larry Sengstock says the revamped elite men's league "desperately" needs an Adelaide presence.

And Jeff Van Groningen, enlisted by 36ers owner-in-absentia Mal Hemmerling to help find a "solution" for the club, also is adamant the current crisis can be averted. Late last week Hemmerling staggered the basketball community by revealing he could not deliver the $1 million bank guarantee in the new-NBL criteria and that his attempts to find investors had been hampered by BA's delays in announcing the composition of its new league.

He then said unless BA relented on the $1 million stipulation, he could not field an Adelaide team in the new competition. That said, on Saturday he went on a five-week holiday while his club teetered on the brink.

Hemmerling and former childcare magnate Eddy Groves jointly purchased the 36ers and the Distinctive Homes Dome from the state government for $3.95 million in July, 2006. Van Groningen, who ran the defunct Brisbane Bullets NBL club for Groves, was brought into town last week by Hemmerling.

With Hemmerling now holidaying, it left many wondering whether Groves in fact owned both properties, his lieutenant in town. "No, I'm not running the ship," Van Groningen insisted.

"I'm not in a defacto leadership position. I've got a specific brief in reviewing what options to push forward."

Asked whether he had been sent to Adelaide by Groves to wind up a sale of the Dome and the 36ers, he said: "I'm here to try to give Mal whatever advice I can.

"Eddy has an interest because he owns the venue and the 36ers are its tenant but I'm not employed by Eddy. While he's interested in selling the Dome, he won't offload it at any cost and it's his preference to have a tenant."

Pressed further on what the future held for Adelaide fans of NBL basketball, Van Groningen said: "I would find it hard to picture a league without the Adelaide 36ers."

In that he has an ally in incoming BA chief executive Sengstock, who starts in the challenging role. "The bottom line in my mind is we're attempting to and wanting to get teams in each of the major cities," he said last night.

"The Adelaide 36ers have been there for 27 years. "We would desperately like to see an Adelaide team in the (new) league. Of course time is of the essence. The time frame is getting shorter - no doubt about that."

BA had planned to reveal the new league and its content before Sengstock assumed the role vacated by Scott Derwin. But it has been held up sorting the many bids non-compliant with the criteria. Those bids include the one from Hemmerling on behalf of Adelaide.

"I'm not deep enough into yet," Sengstock said when asked what solution he could foresee. But if there is a way, he is likely to find it. His big problem appears to be that, in fact, most of the "expressions of interests" accompanied non-compliant bids.


Anonymous said...

Worst kept secret in basketball isn't it

John Rillie said...

There are a lot of those!

Isaac said...

First time Boti's bothered putting it out there though.

DJ Dudd said...

The NBLs now totally gone to shit.

What was this 1million bucks thing anyway?. I say bring back ALL DEFUNCT Clubs and have a proper league, even if they cant afford it (the 1million) and have some sort of discounts for these teams, anything, something, to get the league back to what it was mid 90s.

Anonymous said...

DJ Dudd your out of touch. Get rid of all the clubs like the 36ers who continue to give the sport a bad name. The 36ers have had 8 months to find there million bank guarentee and if they have withheld crucial information to their fans, players and staff on there current economic position then too bad. The league will move forward without them and be better off for it in the long run. Sorry JR I know your a 36er by heart!

DJ Dudd said...

Out of touch?. The NBL is out of touch, and they must think they r the NBA or something. They never will be.

Lower the salary cap, have all foundation teams back in the league, more teams the better. Playing out of their OWN stadiums so that THEY make the money to survive and not these plastic Entertainment Centres. But not millions of dollars either, that has killed off the sport in Australia.

Anonymous said...

Your very tunnel viewed Dj Dudd and similar people to yourself are running the nbl, which is the problem. 1000 ppl doesnt cut it to a nbl game. Newcastle could barely get that, Hobart towards its demise along with Geelong also were the same...Spirit had below 1000 this past season..THe Nbl is done and dusted lets face it....Lets be serious here, to many club changes, too many problems, too many folded gone bye bye