Australia’s premier winter basketball league NBL1 will take another major step in its expansion in 2021 with the establishment of NBL1 West.
The NBL has reached a landmark agreement with Basketball Western Australia to rebrand the men’s and women’s State Basketball League (SBL) to NBL1 West.
NBL1 West will join NBL1 South (Victoria and Tasmania), NBL1 North (Queensland) and NBL1 Central (South Australia) in an expanded conference based competition in 2021, as the NBL continues to bring basketball in Australia together.
Competing NBL1 West teams will be Cockburn Cougars, East Perth Eagles, Geraldton Buccaneers, Goldfields Giants, Joondalup Wolves, Kalamunda Eastern Suns, Lakeside Lightning, Mandurah Magic, Perry Lakes Hawks, Perth Redbacks, Rockingham Flames, South West Slammers, Warwick Senators and Willetton Tigers.
Continuing the theme of creating a connection between the conference logos and state colours, the NBL1 West logo has adopted the traditional yellow of Western Australia.
NBL Chief Operating Officer Andy Crook said: “This is an exciting day for Australian basketball and for basketball in Western Australia with the announcement of NBL1 West. NBL1 is Australia’s premier winter basketball league and we are delighted to welcome Western Australia into the family.
“NBL1 will open up stronger pathways for Western Australian players to progress to the NBL, WNBL, US college and overseas leagues. It will bring bigger audiences to basketball in Western Australia and take NBL1 to a new level.
“Western Australia becomes the fourth major state league to join NBL1 in the space of just two years. The support of Basketball Western Australia and the competing clubs is a major endorsement of the league and its direction.
“After an interrupted 2020 we can’t wait to get back on the court in 2021.”
Basketball Western Australia CEO Rob Clement said: “Basketball Western Australia has worked closely with our 14 clubs to make the decision to join the NBL1. We are very excited to be part of the NBL1 competition in 2021 and showcasing the strength of basketball in Western Australia.
“The SBL has a proud history of 40 years of providing a product that unites our basketball community and we believe that the NBL1 can help us grow this. We look forward to working closely with the other states to raise the profile of our game in Australia.”
More information on the NBL1 structure for 2021, including the NBL1 National Championship weekend, will be announced soon.
NBL1 South enjoyed a highly successful inaugural 2019 season, with over 108,000 fans attending games, every game streamed live on YouTube with over 284,000 viewers across the year and over 1.6 million views on social media videos posted by NBL1.
The 2020 NBL1 season was cancelled due to COVID-19.