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NBL AWARDS: Referee of the Year

Michael Aylen has been named the 2015 NBL Referee of the Year, winning his sixth consecutive award and his eight NBL honour overall. Aylen has an impressive resume, having officiated at three Olympic Games in 2004, 2008 and 2012. He has also refereed in three men’s World Championships in 2006, 2010 and most recently in 2014 in Spain ahead of the 2014/15 NBL season. Aylen won his first NBL Referee of the Year award in 2004 and again in 2008, before going on a five-year streak to consecutively win the award, and this year he takes the tally up to six. Referees Manager Mal Cooper said the competition has benefitted from Aylen’s consistency: “Aylen is everything you need in a referee. He’s cool, calm and collected on the court and his commitment is second to none,” said Cooper. “He is up training at 4:30am every day before work and after hours he does his homework and reviews tape. He doesn’t just show up at the game, he already knows how the players treat the ball and what plays they’ll use come game day.” The Referees Management Team nominated and selected Aylen on his performances and scores over the season, which was approved by the National Basketball League head office. Interim NBL CEO Bret Mactavish said Aylen is an asset to the League: “This is a tremendous honour and it’s great that we can recognise Michael’s longevity and consistency of performance,” said Mactavish. “The NBL is fortunate to have someone of Michael’s caliber, he has represented Australia, has international experience and brings that high standard of officiating to our courts.” Aylen was honoured in an on-court ceremony ahead of Game 2 in the 2015 NBL Grand Final and presented with his award by Bret Mactavish.
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