Thursday, 10 May 2012

Gold Coast Blaze go into voluntary administration

UPDATE: NBL has released the statement that the blaze are looking confident to continue the club into next season.
“Clearly, we still need to allow the Administrator to analyse these plans and the overall position of the club in detail before we can be certain that Gold Coast will continue to play on in the NBL.  However based on the information we have so far, those who have been forecasting the demise of the Blaze since Friday are certainly premature and quite possibly wrong.”

The Gold Coast Blaze have opted to go into voluntary administration to combat their financial difficulties.
“The ownership group of the Gold Coast Blaze advised me late yesterday that they had placed the club into voluntary administration, and had appointed Roland Robson from Aggs Robson as Administrator,” said Basketball Australia's interim chief executive officer Scott Derwin. “The League understands that the Blaze took this difficult decision in order to act in a responsible, legal and ethical manner to try and find an appropriate way past their present financial difficulties."

This would all have come about due to the club owing Brandon Joyce a large sum of money from his contract which he was fired from in 2009. Also the extensive legal fees from trying to get out of paying Joyce the money that is owed to him. NBL has not made a final statement on the mattter but says that they will once they have spoken to the Gold Coast Blaze administration. It is unclear if this opens the Blaze players to other deals in the NBL teams as the team may go under. This must be bring back harsh memories for Blaze MVP Mark worthington being a part of 2 other teams that went bankrupt the South Sydney Dragons and the now back Sydney Kings. Gold Coast has an excellent arena and a solid team and coaching staff but could not get sufficient turnouts to the games. Sport on the Gold Coast is in a massive decline this year has seen the Gold Coast United football club go under, the Gold Coast Titans are owing millions and the Suns have not yet shown they can stand on their own two feet. For the fastest growing area in Australia it is severely lacking in the sporting arena. Perhaps it was a bad choice for the 2018 Commenwealth games.

I hope the Blaze manage to navigate their financial woes and stay in the league, as the NBL is finally starting to make a come back into Australian sport. If the Blaze do go bankrupt it would be good to see the Brisbane Bullets step up and take on the players and coaching staff and sustain the league at its current 9 teams.

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