May 2 2020
With the 2020 NBL1 season cancelled, I haven’t had anything to do for the first time since the day Larry Kestelman decided to call the Melbourne Tigers NBL team the name Melbourne United.
It feels like yesterday that a bunch of fellow Melbourne Tigers fans tried to fight Melbourne United, of course the chances of stopping Melbourne United were slim but we were defending decades of history, decades of memories, decades of potential success in the future.
It was totally and completely worth every moment and will always be that way, many people have become friends, learned new things and some even found jobs they never thought was possible for them to have.
Then we were told or reminded about the original Melbourne Tigers, the club that spawned the spin off that graced the NBL for thirty years, they were in business and they had plans for the future.
Meanwhile regarding the NBL, Some who declined (that’s putting it politely) to follow United decided to follow the Sydney Kings when Andrew Gaze coached them, some of us picked other clubs and some just abandoned the NBL completely and haven’t looked back.
We watched how the Melbourne Tigers went from Big V to SEABL, saw the Men went from 3 wins to 7 wins and then threaten for finals and then finally made it to finals in NBL1 and before that we saw the Tigers add a Women’s team and they made the finals within two seasons.
Last year we got to see every game on YouTube and for somebody who lives in Queensland, it was the best thing since the Tigers won the last of their four NBL titles and it was even more special when the Men made the finals .
NBL1, isn’t it funny how we once again ended up under the gaze of Larry Kestelman but this time he only owns the competition and not the club so we cannot kill us off a second time.
This year we would of threatened to win the title, last years team was largely retained, some old favourites returned and things were looking sweet, then came COVID-19 and the end of a promising season before the began.
2021 will happen, hopefully those who signed on the dotted line in 2020 will do so again for 2021, may the fans who have gone away continue to find their way back home to MSAC as the Tigers play and may the city of Melbourne be proud of the Tigers.