The National Basketball League (NBL), Australia’s top-tier basketball competition, has announced the opening round of its 2023-24 season has broken broadcast and crowd records.

The average TV audience of the seven games of the opening NBL round achieved a 40% year-on-year increase over the equivalent fixtures of the 2022-23 season. The games were broadcast across networks ESPN, via the streaming service KAYO, and Foxtel.

NBL chief executive David Stevenson stated: “To be up more than 40 percent on last year shows the significant amount of awareness and traction we have generated and the desire for elite basketball content in Australia and New Zealand.”

On top of this, the combined 50,934 fans that attended the seven games set a new record for the league’s opening-round attendance.

The previous record, set at the beginning of the 2018/19 season, was 48,820.

The biggest draw was the game between the ten-time champion Perth Wildcats and the 2022-23 playoff semi-finalist Tasmania JackJumpers.

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The game, held at Perth’s RAC Arena, drew 12,361 fans, more than two games in the 2022-23 grand final best-of-five series.

Stevenson continued: “This is yet another significant moment in the NBL’s history and cements our League as one of the hottest tickets on the Australian and New Zealand summer sporting calendar.”

Elsewhere in the world of basketball the British Basketball League (BBL), the UK’s top-tier basketball competition, has extended its partnership with sportswear brand Kappa.

In support of an organization-wide rebrand across the BBL and its women’s equivalent, the WBBL, Kappa will continue to exclusively produce a range of sportswear for all the BBL and WBBL’s clubs.

As part of the rebrand, each team will have new kits provided by Kappa to go along with their new identities and logos.

The Kappa kits will also feature the league’s new logo, which brings the BBL and WBBL under one banner.

The BBL is Kappa’s longest-running UK-based partner, with the two having been partnered since 2016.

The BBL is coming off a record-breaking campaign wherein its linear and digital viewership figures increased by over 200%.