New Zealand’s NBL to start new season on June 23

Auckland, May 22 (IANS) The New Zealand National Basketball League (NBL) will kick off on June 23 with a player draft preceding the opening day of the competition.

International Basketball Federation (FIBA) announced on Thursday that the player draft will take place on June 11, and will feature 84 players drafted in the event.

The 2020 season will feature seven teams including the Auckland Huskies, Canterbury Rams, Franklin Bulls, Manawatu Jets, Nelson Giants, Otago Nuggets, and Taranaki Mountainairs. The tournament will feature 56 games to be played in Auckland from June 23 for six weeks to determine the champion.

“We knew we needed to adapt, show creativity, and came up with something new and exciting. We believe, together with our teams and players, we have developed a format that will work well in the current environment,” shared NBL General Manager Justin Nelson.

“The teams made it clear they needed access to a pool of players, especially those teams in smaller regions given there would be no imports and access to enough local players would be difficult.

“All teams this year are putting in the same money to support players, there is no longer a mix of spending, high or low. So it was vital we provided financial equality that helped to spread the talent to create a level, balanced and competitive competition,” he added.



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