The Gold Coast Blaze have been handed a lifeline by the local council and may move there games to the Carrara indoor stadium. The Gold Coast City Council have agreed to give the Blaze free use of office space and training facilities at Carrara stadum next season. This will cut a 6 figure sum from the Clubs budget next season. Currently the Blaze play exorbitant fees for their plush office space in Broadbeach, training facilities throughout the coast and use of the Broadbeach convention centre. From here it will only cost the Blaze another $500,000 to participate in the 2012/13 NBL season.
The blaze are transforming into a community based model similar to that for the Cairns taipans and Woolongong Hawks. Owner Owen Tomlinson is feeling confident that they can stay in the league.
"I'm feeling a lot more hopeful now that maybe there is some agreement we can reach to ensure the club is here next year." However the Blaze are still very much on life support. The Blaze still have till the 13th of this month to pay league costs to participate in the 2012/13 season however it is unknown how much of the players cap the Blaze will spend or if they will manage to keep any of their old players.
The Carrara stadium was the home to the Gold Coast Rollers while they were in the NBL during the 90's however went under due to finances and poor stadium facilities. The prices will have to be cheaper having games at a smaller and downgraded arena and it will be intersting to see if they manage to improve the facilities at all coming into the 2012/13 season, as their were talks of improving the stadium for the 2018 commenwealth games. Carrara is a lot further from the main strip of the Gold Coast and attendances may drop substantially. Broadbeach was ideally located, close to public transport, pubs and restaurants and still could not manage big audience turn outs. Lets hope the Blaze manage to stay a float and that people still attend the games