The National Basketball Championship tips off at Te Rauparaha Arena in Porirua this Thursday with seven associations vying for the title.
The competition has been split into two pools, with Porirua, the Kelvin Hotel Southland Flyers, and Harbour making up Pool A. Pool B lists Counties Franklin, the Canterbury Knights, Hutt Valley and the Nelson Suns.
The event boasts some familiar players with a handful of New Zealand representatives, NBL players and former Tall Blacks listed in the rosters, including (among others) Canterbury’s Marques Whippy; Counties Franklin’s Samson Aruwa; Hutt Valley’s Brendon Polyblank and Damien Ekenasio; Southland’s Andrew Wheeler, Dan Peck; Nelson’s Samuel Dempster, Alistair Granger and Bronson Beri; and Porirua’s Arthur Trousdell, Brook Ruscoe and Jordan Mills. Harbour is arguably the more weighted of the teams with Jaylen Gerrand, Kevin Braswell, Leon Henry and BJ Anthony.
The event opens on Thursday with the first games between Nelson Suns V Counties Franklin, and Canterbury Knights V Hutt Valley, tipping off at 10am. The semi-finals commence Saturday morning, then the tournament concludes with the grand final Saturday evening at 7pm.
Live stats for semis and finals will be available on the daily website draw posted on www.basketball.org.nz