Cairns Taipans

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Cairns Taipans
2013–14 Cairns Taipans season
Cairns Taipans logo
League NBL
Founded 1999
Arena The Snakepit
Cairns Convention Centre
Arena Capacity 5,300
Location Cairns, Queensland
Team colors Orange, Navy, Tan and White
CEO Australia Mark Beecroft
President Australia Mike Scott
Vice-president(s) Australia Ross Moller
Team manager Australia Mark Beecroft
Head coach Australia Aaron Fearne
Ownership Taipans Basketball Incorporated
Championships Nil
Website Taipans.com
Uniforms
Kit body navysides.png
Home jersey
Team colours
Team colours
Home
Kit body orangesides.png
Away jersey
Kit shorts orangesides.png
Team colours
Away

The Cairns Taipans are an Australian men's professional basketball team competing in the Australian National Basketball League (NBL). The club is based in the North Queensland city of Cairns. The Taipans, named after a species of venomous snake native to Australia, entered the NBL in the 1999–2000 season. The Taipans play their home games at the 5,300 seat Cairns Convention Centre (CCC), known as "The Snakepit" within the NBL, and play in orange and white colours.

History[edit]

The first coach in franchise history was former Cairns Marlins ABA coach Rod Popp. Playing at the newly expanded Cairns Convention Centre, the Taipans played their first game against the Sydney Kings in front of 4,407 fans. However, there would be few highlights in their first season, finishing last with a 2–26 record.

With a large turn-over of players in their second season, expectations for Cairns were low. Headed by Guy Molloy, a former South-East Melbourne Magic and Australian women's national team assistant coach, the Taipans would improve to 6–22, sell out five of fourteen home games and attract over 4,963 spectators per match.

Midway through the 2001/02 season, Taipans released import forward Matt Garrison replacing him with the exciting Jayson Wells, who made an immediate impact on the team averaging over 22 points and 10 rebounds per game including a season high 40 points against Canberra Cannons and 39 points against reigning NBL champions Wollongong Hawks. During the season the club registered their first ever wins against North Queensland rivals Townsville Crocodiles, Wollongong Hawks, Adelaide 36ers and Victoria Titans. The club also recorded their biggest winning margin in a match against Canberra and won the best of head to head battles against reigning title holders Wollongong and the Victoria Titans. The club again showed significant improvement to earn nine victories.

In 2002/03, the Taipans took another significant step forward by winning 13 games while finishing in eighth position, showing that the club should make the playoffs for the first time in the near future.

The 2003/04 season proved to be an exciting one for the Taipans, with the recruitment of experienced NBL championship-winning forwards Melvin Thomas and Marcus Timmons helping the Taipans to reach their first playoffs in franchise history. The Taipans first finals appearance resulted in a win, as the Taipans upset Perth Wildcats 103–96. Ultimately, the Taipans maiden post-season foray was stopped by the West Sydney Razorbacks who would go on to come within a single game of the title. Timmons earned his team’s MVP award for the season.

The 2004/05 season witnessed the first-ever reversal of the Taipan’s forward progress from the past five seasons, resulting in championship coach Alan Black being signed to replace Molloy. The addition of All-Star Martin Cattalini and Darnell Mee, as well as AIS up-and-comer Adam Gibson helped the Taipans to a fifth-place finish in 2005–06. Cairns defeated the Hunter Pirates in the first round, and Anthony Stewart hit a three late in overtime to help the Taipans past the Adelaide 36ers, and advance the Taipans to their first ever semi-final. The Taipans lost this to the defending champion Sydney Kings in two straight games, narrowly going down 84–82 in game two in Cairns.

The 2006/07 Taipans consolidated their form of the previous year with a 17–16 record and a sixth place finish. Many Taipans players enjoyed notable personal success. Martin Cattalini placed second in the NBL among scorers, behind New Zealand's Carlos Powell. Darnell Mee placed sixth in the league for assists, whilst new addition Kevin Owens was amongst the best rebounders and blockers in the league. The Taipans defeated the South Dragons 118–97 in the second quarter-final, and then beat the Perth Wildcats 82–78 in the fourth quarter-final to advance to the semi-final series against the Melbourne Tigers but were swept by the Tigers in 2.

Halfway through the 2008/09 season the Taipans were placed into voluntary administration. However a community based public ownership scheme was floated, and shares and syndicates were made available to purchase to the general public as a part of the team as a whole, in much the same way as the Green Bay Packers of the National Football League. These shares raised the necessary half a million dollars of operating capital required by the new NBL guidelines and made the Taipans the first publicly owned professional sporting franchise in Australia. This same scheme of public ownership was followed by the Wollongong Hawks, who also successfully attracted enough investment to be viable for the 2009/10 NBL season.

After two seasons near the bottom. Cairns finished in 3rd spot in 2010–11 and won their first ever semi final game by beating Townsville in Game 2 74–57 to even the series and force the series to the deciding game. At the Crocodiles' home, Cairns would eventually win the decider Game 3 with a 10-point win, allowing them to go into their first grand-final series where they faced the New Zealand Breakers. The Breakers won game 1 (85–67), before the Taipans fought a tough battle to win game 2 (85–81) in double overtime. With the series tied at 1–1, the grand-final went to game 3. The Breakers won 71–53, leaving the Taipans as runners-up for the 2010–11.

Honour Roll[edit]

NBL Championships: 0
NBL Finals Appearances: 4 (2004, 2006, 2007, 2011)
NBL Grand Final appearances: 1 (2011)
All-NBL First Team: Chris Burgess (2005)
NBL Rookie of the Year: Nathan Jawai (2008), Cameron Gliddon (2013)
NBL Most Improved Player: Gary Boodnikoff (2006)

Season-by-Season[edit]

Season Results Finals Coach Captain Club MVP
1999/00 11th (2–26) Rod Popp Terry Johnson N/A
2000/01 9th (6–22) Guy Molloy Anthony Stewart Ben Knight/Aaron Trahair
2001/02 11th (9–21) Guy Molloy Anthony Stewart Jayson Wells
2002/03 8th (13–17) Guy Molloy Brad Davidson/Jayson Wells Ben Knight/Anthony Stewart
2003/04 6th (16–17) Quarter-Finalists (1–1) Guy Molloy Brad Davidson Marcus Timmons
2004/05 10th (11–21) Guy Molloy Anthony Stewart Chris Burgess
2005/06 5th (18–14) Semi-Finalists (2–2) Alan Black Anthony Stewart/Darnell Mee Martin Cattalini
2006/07 7th (17–16) Semi-Finalists (2–2) Alan Black Anthony Stewart Martin Cattalini
2007/08 6th (16–14) Quarter-Finalists Alan Black Martin Cattalini Nathan Jawai
2008/09 9th (11–19) Alan Black/Mark Beecroft Martin Cattalini Martin Cattalini
2009/10 7th (11–17) Aaron Fearne Phill Jones Dusty Rychart
2010/11 3rd (16–12) Grand Finalists Aaron Fearne Phill Jones/Alex Loughton/Ian Crosswhite Ayinde Ubaka
2011/12 5th (15-13) Aaron Fearne Alex Loughton/Ian Crosswhite Jamar Wilson
2012/13 6th (11-17) Aaron Fearne Alex Loughton Jamar Wilson
2013/14 5th (12-16) Aaron Fearne Cameron Tragardh Cameron Gliddon

Source: Club History

Current roster[edit]

Cairns Taipans roster
Players Coaches
Pos. # Nat. Name Ht. Wt.
G 1 Australia Maynard, Corey 1.90 m (6 ft 3 in) 84 kg (185 lb)
SG 3 Australia Gliddon, Cameron 1.96 m (6 ft 5 in) 90 kg (198 lb)
G 7 Australia Bruce, Shaun 1.92 m (6 ft 4 in) 82 kg (181 lb)
PF 9 Australia Young, Mitchell 2.06 m (6 ft 9 in) 107 kg (236 lb)
F/C 11 Australia Tragardh, Cameron (C) 2.09 m (6 ft 10 in) 108 kg (238 lb)
SF 13 Australia Weigh, Stephen 1.98 m (6 ft 6 in) 105 kg (231 lb)
C 22 Australia Burston, Matt 2.11 m (6 ft 11 in) 103 kg (227 lb)
F/C 40 Australia Loughton, Alex 2.06 m (6 ft 9 in) 110 kg (243 lb)
Head coach
  • Australia Aaron Fearne
Assistant coach(es)
  • Australia Mick Downer
  • Australia Jamie Pearlman
  • Australia Brad Burdon
  • Australia Grant Spencer

Legend
  • (C) Team captain
  • (DP) Development player
  • (I) Import player
  • Injured Injured

Roster
Updated: 30 May 2014

Depth Chart[edit]

Pos. Starter Bench Bench Reserve
C Cameron Tragardh Matt Burston
PF Alex Loughton Mitchell Young
SF Stephen Weigh
SG Cameron Gliddon
PG Corey Maynard Shaun Bruce

Notable players[edit]

External links[edit]