“Improving the sport”: Why I’m working with the Parramatta Basketball Association

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Home of the Wildcats: The picture above shows the Wildcats’ logo side by side with the Auburn City Council’s slogan: “Many cultures, one community.”
As a kid growing up, I had three great loves – history, photography and basketball.
Storytelling comes in as close second.
Not many people know this but it was through my exposure to the works of Andrew Bernstein and Nathaniel S. Butler – both renowned sports photographers who had covered games for the National Basketball Association (NBA) -that I developed my love for photography.
In terms of basketball history, I am a walking encyclopaedia.
I can talk about basketball all day long given the opportunity. In fact, I once spoke about it so much that someone suggested, sarcastically, that maybe I should write a book about it.
So I did. Or at least I am trying to.
I’m not a good basketball player but I love this game and I’ve learnt over the years that when you love something, you will always find away to utilise any resource at your disposal to improve it.
Dr. McDonnell’s “History Beyond The Classroom” program gave me the platform to achieve just that.
With the academic freedom he had given us, I decided to use my passions to craft a historical book, filled with stories, images and statistics, about basketball in Sydney, a city I have grown to love in my nine years living here. It is also a city in need of more literature to be written about its rich local basketball history.
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Early years: Photographs of the PBA operating out of the Auburn Basketball Centre during the 1970-80’s with players playing on concrete floors.
Enter the Parramatta Basketball Association (PBA), the brains behind the Ultimate Basketball League (UBL).
I first came across the UBL in 2013, I remember quite a few of my friends played in their league. It was their inaugural season and it attracted a lot of former and aspiring National Basketball League (NBL) players such as Luke Martin, Ben Knight, Graeme Dann and Luke Kendall. The UBL’s full games were live streamed. They were even sponsored by Spalding – the official sponsor of the NBA. In other words, the UBL was a huge hit in the local basketball scene in Sydney.

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