Can 5,500 people be enough?

With all the glitz and glamour of the NBL, our eyes turn to the stands to see just how filled they are in order to see what a new Melbourne side needs to be a success.

Melbourne United have been struggling to approach full houses despite a hot start and lots and lots of promos, Perth meanwhile have had two games at Perth Arena and have had 11,645 and 10,423 people attend it’s 14,846 person arena so those figures make Perth Arena 78.44% and 70.21% filled.

Hisense Arena can hold 10,500 for Basketball if areas are not curtained off and so if we ignore the curtained off areas and count every seat, the 7,009 people who attended the opening home game filled Hisense Arena only 66.75% of the arena’s maximum design and the second game had an attendance of 5,243 fans which filled 49.93% of Hisense Arena.

So based on those figures Perth had a higher percentage of seats filled by margins of 11.69% and 20.28% which is quite a significant total.

Now if we say Hisense tops out at 7,009 as the press said 7,009 was capacity then the second Hisense game was filled to 74.80% capacity which is a massive difference from 49.93% of a 10,500 seat Arena to 74.80% of a 7,009 seat configuration of the same arena.

The average total of games at Hisense so far is about 5,500, it could be slightly higher or lower due to one of the games not having a published total so United needs to fill Hisense Arena to about 75 to 80% of the apparent 7,009 person capacity to keep above average but then again management can take the covers off seats or add covers anytime which screws totals up yet make them look good or bad depends on who is reporting.

Now we know that United can get 10,000 people, we saw it last year and one occasion was hailed as a great day for Victorian Basketball even though Tigers and Magic fans would likely say ‘Been there, Done that’ and Fox Sports believes that attendance will go up in the summer and if they are right then perhaps United will challenge those levels especially if the hot form continues.

The South Dragons also came close to 10,000 on October 18 2008 when they got 9,308 people into Hisense Arena followed by 8,093 people on February 8 2009 and 8,201 and 8,922 to the second and fifth game of the Grand Final series on March 8 and 13 2009 all games were against the Melbourne Tigers which supports the theory that Victorian vs Victorian games bring out more fans than Victorian vs Other for attendance was down into the 3,000-4,000 range.

Hopefully somewhere out there a basketball consortium is seeing what we see and say right if we get a minimum of 5,500 to our games in the early part of the season then we can challenge Melbourne United in the NBL and then aim to keep pace as holidays are in full swing from December to late January.

Can it be done? With the cash being thrown around it is entirely possible heck it could even be a certainty if you pick a club that has runs on the board like a Melbourne Tigers, South Dragons, SE Melbourne Magic, Geelong Supercats (SEABL success story) and even the Coburg Giants who have been in the NBL and are playing elsewhere.

Every now and then teams who are formed from nothing are hits because they get the right playing address, right people behind desks, right staff and right players but rich people probably want to play it safe and go for an established team name, colours and history like what happened with the Sydney Kings and soon the Brisbane Bullets.

We can only hope.


Power of the Passion

Greetings rebellious Tigers, Dragons, Magic, Giants and Supercats fans,

Some of you have been campaigning for your side to re-enter the NBL for some time and there are times that you must feel like you are a Drongo for doing so because you might be the only one in the crowd at times but you’re not because you are showing two of the best elements in sport and they are passion and emotion and that is something attractive to people.

The other day this writer was having a discussion with a man who said that pro sport is business and we should get over the Tigers and get behind Melbourne United, not surprisingly I said ‘No thank you’.

People don’t follow teams because they are the richest and are flowing with stars and fancy stuff, they follow them for their great times and the bad times, the iconic coaches, the unforgettable players, the hard working staff members and their fellow passionate fans.

Passionate Tigers fans moved to support the BigV Tigers and begin the climb again to top level Basketball, Giants fans can still see their team out in Coburg and I still hope they’ll awaken from their NBL dreams soon, Dragons and Magic fans are still working on returning to the big time and Supercats fans are making SEABL their playground and no doubt if they had the cash (maybe they do) they could look at the NBL.

If fans band together they can make things happen, you never know whose eyes and ears your efforts you reach because nothing is set in stone, opportunity opens doors every single day and if you believe in your team, if your fellow supporters back you up or get inspired themselves then outer space is the limit.

Don’t just dream and hope, do something and see what happens.

Tigers fans watch Melbourne battle with interest

Tigers fans have been watching the news about the SE Melbourne Magic and South Dragons bids to enter the NBL with interest for it has the potential to give fans a team to support in the NBL whilst the Tigers are on the sidelines.

This does not mean that Tigers fans will be buying Magic or Dragons memberships by the dozen as the majority asked in ‘Save The Melbourne Tigers’ have answered that they will wait for the Tigers to rejoin the competition instead of joining one of the two bids.

Fans have also stated strongly that they don’t mind which team gets in because they’ll get to beat Melbourne United, this could bode well for the incoming team for they will be looking to set up something special against their cross city rivals.

Tigers fans have overwhelmingly voted no to joining the CTI Melbourne United Ballers ranks with no votes recorded on the option, this does not bode well for United who are no doubt hoping those NBL fans who are supporters of the Tigers but dislike the thought of the Magic or the Dragons back in the NBL will join Melbourne United instead.

We Are Not United wishes both bids the best of luck and will be continuing to report on the outcome of their efforts when the news comes to hand.