Basketball Australia boss Paul Maley was known in his NBL playing days as the mailman, but it's NBL owner Larry Kestelman that is doing the delivering for Tasmania.
Kestelman is the man not only behind the resurgence of the NBL and basketball in Australia, but the backer of Melbourne United from the shadows of an often divisive Melbourne Tigers that never had the full support of a city.
The 52-year-old, one-time Ukrainian immigrant, wants to do with Tasmania what he did in Melbourne - to unite all of its basketball followers.
So much so, Kestelman's arrival in Launceston on Thursday aroused a demand from Premier Will Hodgman.
It would strangely be one without a political message, but delivered to the very taxpayers that are propping up the $300,000 funding for NBL Blitz preseason series.
"We've got great ambitions for our state to be a part of a national competition and we really welcome the interest the NBL has shown in our state," Hodgman said.
"This is a great opportunity for Tasmanians to show that we will get behind sporting events when we bring them."
Just within reach of a NBL side landing on Tasmania's front door, Hodgman called on spectators to put bums on seats across all five venues.
He said it was time that Tasmanians have to "do it's bit" to prove they want to be a part of the NBL every season.
"The state government is prepared to look very actively towards opportunities to get teams of our own in national competitions," he said.
"We greatly appreciate the NBL has to be a part of that ambition, but we also have to demonstrate that when the government spends your money and the NBL makes a commitment to come to our state, it is imperative Tasmanians come out support it.
"People will not be disappointed - we are seeing the best players in the country, right here across our state, so we've got no excuses."
ELSEWHERE IN SPORT
Hodgman's plea in front of Kestelman at a press conference at Riverside Primary School where the Premier mixed with budding basketballers was so Tasmanians could prove his government investment has a purpose.
Kestelman hosed down threats that numbers at the 10 Blitz games would affect Tasmania being granted a licence for the next franchise.
"It's one of the factors, but we also acknowledge we haven't been here for a very long time," Kestelman said.
"This is actually the first step in growing the support.
"We want to promote basketball and want it to be the No.1 sport in Tasmania.
"We understand this is the journey, but we want to see as many people come out."
Just 12 months after a failed bid - backed by the Southern Huskies - the race is on to even up nine sides.
The last entry of South East Melbourne Phoenix, the team standing within a half-court shot of Kestelman's words, may not be the last ahead of the 2020-21 season.
"We are pushing very, very hard," Kestelman said.
"No one can believe the timelines that we're moving."
Kestelman added that nothing including finding a prospective owner will stop his gift to Tasmania.
"The good news with us is we're saying if all things don't fall into place, we don't need an owner - we will run it," Kestelman said. "We're committed to the fact that we think it's an incredible product and whether we run it or someone else, we're committed to a licence down here."
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