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Darwin in NBL Expansion Talks

Darwin is being considered as a potential expansion option for the NBL, league commissioner Jeremy Loeliger has confirmed.  

This year’s NBL Blitz will be held in Darwin in mid-September, with all 10 teams to descend on the top end for a week ahead of the new season.

With the success of the Darwin Salties in NBL1, and the strong expansion model the Tasmania JackJumpers have provided, Loeliger says the Blitz will help measure the temperature for an NBL team in Darwin.

“Make no mistake, we're not here by accident. We want to come and see what the appetite is for professional basketball here in Darwin,” Loeliger said.

“It’s certainly on the table for discussion as to whether or not an NBL team should be here in Darwin. We're not ruling anything out, but nothing is a fait accompli either.

“We have always said, we don't expand for the sake of expansion, we go to where the markets tell us to go.

“If there's the right alignment of infrastructure, of partnerships at both public and corporate level, and the public interest, then we're open to it.

“We've demonstrated in Tasmania that we can go into smaller markets than perhaps some of the other professional sporting leagues in Australia. We don't need 20-25,000 people to turn up to games in order for a professional basketball club to be sustainable.

“Absolutely, we're considering whether or not it's viable to bring an NBL team to Darwin.”

The 2019 NBL Blitz was held in Tasmania before the JackJumpers were formed.

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