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How the 2017 NBL is shaping up

We are still a month out from the NBL finals but already the top four looks pretty well set. Logan Savory takes a look at where the seven teams are at.


Current record: 12 games - 12 wins, 0 losses.

Run home: Southland (H), Taranaki (A), Nelson (A), Rangers (A), Hawks (A), Nelson (A).

The lowdown: Three wins from their remaining six games will be enough to be absolutely certain of finishing the round-robin series as the top ranked.

It would be a major surprise if they were unable to do just that with most of the interest centering on if Wellington can possibly go through the regular unbeaten.


Current record: 12 games, nine wins, three losses.

Run home: Wellington (A), Rangers (A), Canterbury (A), Taranaki (H), Rangers (A), Hawks (H).

The lowdown: Just one more win from their final six games will make absolutely certain the Sharks will yet again be part of the NBL playoffs. The most interest within Southland is likely to centre on which position they finish and which team they play in the semifinal. Everything is pointing to them finishing behind Wellington and playing either Canterbury or the Super City Rangers in one semifinal.


Current record: 12 games - seven wins, five losses.

Run home: Southland (H), Wellington (H), Hawks (H), Nelson (A), Southland (H), Canterbury (H).

The lowdown: The Rangers are more than likely to be part of the playoffs this season and will hope to continue their recent run where they have won three of their past four outings. Two more wins from their final six round-robin games will probably be enough to lock in a playoff spot.

The Rangers goal will more than likely be to finish second or third and avoid a semifinal showdown with the high-flying Wellington Saints.


Current record: 13 games - six wins, seven losses

Run home: Hawks (H), Southland (H), Taranaki (H), Nelson (H), Rangers (A).

The lowdown: Canterbury have a strong roster but have been below their best to date this season. Given the nature of the competition, they are still more than likely to part of the playoffs despite having a six win, seven loss record at the moment. A win over Hawke's Bay on Saturday will go a long way to setting up that playoff spot.


Current record: 11 games - 3 wins, 8 losses

Run home: Nelson (A), Canterbury (A), Taranaki (A), Rangers (H), Wellington (H), Taranaki (A), Southland (A).

The lowdown: The three teams sitting outside the top four at the moment are all very slim chances of pushing their way into the top four. If you had to pick one of the teams which could make a late play for a playoff spot it would probably be Hawke's Bay, mostly because they still have seven games to play. A win in Nelson and Christchurch this weekend is a must if they want to keep the dream alive.


Current record: 13 games - 3 wins, 10 losses.

Run home: Hawks (H), Wellington (H), Rangers (H), Canterbury (A), Wellington (H).

The lowdown: Nelson remain a mathematical chance but even the most passionate Giants would struggle to believe it can happen. Time to start planning for 2018.


Current record: 13 games - 3 wins, 10 losses.

Run home: Wellington Saints (H), Hawke's Bay (H), Southland (A), Canterbury (A), Hawke's Bay (H).

The lowdown: Taranaki sit in the same boat as Nelson - it seems just pride will be on the line through their final five games of 2017.

Article and image courtesy of The Southland Times

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