North-West Thunder chairman Tony Barker says Basketball reforms will largely benefit the club

Speaking after his club held their own discussions on the matter as well as sitting down with NWBU and Basketball Tasmania officials, Barker said the move to have the Thunder working under the same umbrella as the rebadged NWBA should help shore up their future.

“In order to do that, you need to be well connected and engaged with everybody through the grass roots – the new proposed structure should allow that to happen easier.”

Barker added that the addition of full-time staff to administer the game would also be a huge asset to the Thunder, which has got by on volunteer labour for many years.

“For most of the time, having full-time staff has been a pipe dream,” he said.

“We had things in place to get that to happen for next season as a dual role between NWBU and Thunder, but with the new structure it will happen a lot better and you should get a lot better outcome than what we would have come up with trying to fit it around our old structure.

While not concerned, Barker said the Thunder will have to work around some processes regarding their relationship with the Launceston Tornadoes, who they share the current NBL1 licence with.

“We need to be operating together in a lot of aspects for NBL1, but it’s an area this new structure probably doesn’t allow for,” he said.

“That’s not to say it doesn’t preclude it from happening, but it doesn’t set up some ideal process.

“I don’t have any concerns, but we just need to do something in addition to what the new structure provides.”