Basketball Tasmania chief executive Chris McCoy says there is the potential for pre-season NBL matches in Tasmania after two clubs relocated to the state for training purposes.
South East Melbourne Phoenix and the New Zealand Breakers made the move to the state on Friday, where they will train at Kingborough [with the Derwent Entertainment Centre unavailable] following COVID-19 cases in Victoria, with the NBL season scheduled to start on January 10.
McCoy said on Friday the positive vibe created when the NBL held its pre-season Blitz competition in the state in 2019 had helped pave the way for the state to be an option.
"Obviously it is difficult for the teams with border restrictions and flare ups, so it is good that Tassie can become an option for them to get down and consider some pre-season training and potentially some pre-season games,'' McCoy said, with the governing body part of the discussions to see the teams move here.
"Similar to the pre-season Blitz, we will assist in any way we can while they are here, whether that is a week or two or longer.
"I think the teams really enjoyed themselves when they were down here for the pre-season Blitz and that memory is still in their minds and on the back of that, it has been a good contingency plan for the league to look at now.
"It will depend on how the border situation works out [if there was a delay], but there is potentially the opportunity for some pre-season games as they are preparing for a season proper.
"If we have teams down here and can get some good games going we [Basketball Tasmania] will certainly encourage it as we would love to see any basketball action.
"We will see how that evolves as that will obviously depend what happens in Victoria and New South Wales with the flare ups."
McCoy also said there would be the potential for the North-West Coast to be involved. He said the Ulverstone Sports and Leisure Centre would be available from next week after its courts were redone if more teams were forced to relocate. He said the Devonport Recreation Centre was off the agenda due to court work there.
"That [Ulverstone] would be a good option as it hosted pre-season matches [in the Blitz],'' McCoy said.
"It is more than the courts, it is the accommodation facilities and how it can work in that bubble environment, where they can come down here and focus on their training and move around in a safe environment."
NBL commissioner Jeremy Loeliger on Thursday said the league was "working to move both the Sydney Kings and the Hawks from their current location in Albury given the ongoing situation in New South Wales".
McCoy also believed there could be some scope for community engagement while teams were in the state.
The announcement comes at the start at a big year for basketball with the Tasmania JackJumpers entering the competition in 2021-22.
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