Last week Adelaide journalist Boti Nagy briefly touched on why the NBL holds a roster spot for an Australian who is under the age of 23.
I have had many an animated discussion with various people in the basketball fraternity, so it is time to share my thoughts on this topic.
First and the most obvious point to me is, the NBL is a professional league and has to be striving to put the best available talent on the court. By restricting one of the ten available roster spots per team, every year you are going to lose talent just to fulfill this age limit obligation.
Let's use the Adelaide 36ers as an example to highlight my point. It looks as though veteran point guard Brad Davidson is going to lose out so the 36ers can make good on filling a roster spot with a wet nose kid who has not earned his stripes.
I'll highlight this example a step further. Final game of the season and the 36ers need to win to make the playoffs. No playoff birth for the 36ers and Head Coach Scott Ninnis is out of a job because someone in the front office believes they underachieved with the roster they have put together.
Does Ninnis feel more comfortable looking down his bench and seeing Brad Davidson or some kid who has the right date of birth (that allows him to squeak a year or two out in the NBL until he turns 23..another point I will get to later) when import John Gilchrist fouls out of the game?
The answer is a no brainer.
I use the 36ers as purely an example. I can go through nearly every other roster in the NBL and make a similar case.
For now I will end this post here because I have just wound myself up just writing about this topic. Sorry, but I have a passion and desire for this game to succeed in this country. When basketball has the audacity to call it "professional" sport but we put so many restrictions on players, it really leaves me shaking my head.
If I have cooled down by tomorrow, I will express my feelings on the AIS/US college part of this argument.
- Australian Boomers name squad to tour South America. There are six new faces that will pull on the green and gold for the first time. Young guns Jason Cadee and St Mary's bound Matthew Dellavedova will make their debut.
Washington State grad Aron Baynes has decided green and gold is more to his liking than black and white. another win for the Aussies over the Kiwis.
Utah Ute grad Luke Nevill gets his chance to impress Head Coach Brett Brown.
New Adelaide 36ers centre Matt Burston has done well to overcome some horrific injures and get the chance to represent his country.
Last tour's captain James Harvey and Washington St bound Brock Motum were not selected due to injury.
- Former assistant coach of the South Dragons,Guy Molloy, to head to Ballarat.
- Former St Louis Billiken Kevin Lisch is bringing his defense to Perth.
If he brings more defense than offense to the west, the janitor at the Wildcats practice facility will not be changing the nets too often. Between Lisch, Brad Robbins and Damien Martin, someone will need to put points on the board.
Oops, I forgot Martin Cattilini has returned to the west.
- Look for former New Zealand Breaker import Rich Melzer to be teaming up with a fellow Minnesota native on an NBL roster this season.
- Just sniffing around You Tube and found these two Aussie NBA stars (Andrew Bogut and Nathan Jawai) shooting some interesting (low budget) commercials.