Newcastle Eagles

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Newcastle Eagles
Newcastle Eagles logo
League BBL
Established 1976
History EPAB Washington
Sunderland Saints
Sunderland Scorpions
Newcastle Comets
Newcastle Eagles
Arena Metro Radio Arena
(Capacity: 6,500)
Sport Central
(Capacity: 3,000)
Location Newcastle, Tyne and Wear
Team colours Black and White
Main sponsor Esh Group, Northumbria University, Northumbrian Water
Head coach United States United Kingdom Fab Flournoy
Ownership United Kingdom Paul Blake
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Home jersey
Kit shorts whitesides.png
Team colours
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Away jersey
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Team colours

Newcastle Eagles (for sponsorship purposes Esh Group Eagles Newcastle) is a British Basketball League team from Newcastle upon Tyne. They are the most successful team in the league's history. Since 2010 they have played all home games at the 3,000 capacity Sport Central arena at Northumbria University in the city.[1] Their traditional arch rivals are the Glasgow Rocks, but the 2011–12 season has seen the arrival of the Durham Wildcats located just 25 miles south of Newcastle.

Franchise history[edit]

New name, New arena[edit]

Sir John Hall, then chairman of Newcastle United FC bought the team shortly after their arrival in Newcastle; adding them to his Newcastle Sporting Group of the city's football, ice hockey and rugby teams. Hall's Sporting Club group was a relative failure and Ken Nottage and Paul Blake became the club's new owners. The final name change, from the Comets to the Eagles, took place in 1996. Performances remained consistent with the Eagles achieving regular top five league placings from 1998 onwards.

The "Clean sweep" of 2005–06[edit]

The 2005–06 season proved to be the most successful in their history so far when, under the guidance of player/coach Fabulous Flournoy, the club achieved a "clean sweep" of trophies, including the BBL Cup, BBL Trophy and Championship "double".

In addition, Flournoy picked up the BBL Coach of the Year and former Villanova Wildcat, Andrew Sullivan, was voted BBL Player of the Year. Flournoy, Sullivan and Andrew Bridge were also members of the bronze medal winning England team in the 2006 Commonwealth Games during March 2006.

Recent Times[edit]

At the start of the 2007–08 season it was announced that Nike and Northern Rock were to sponsor the Eagles, bringing in more money to the club. Also, the signing of Richard Midgley gave great hope that the eagles could challenge Guildford Heat to regain the BBL League title. However, after a bust up with player/coach, Fab Flournoy he soon left to join the Everton Tigers. This meant there was no point guard and this led to the signing of Bryan Defares who could not settle in England and he too left. Finally, at the third attempt, Steve Leven (former NBA prospect) was signed despite his bad boy reputation. After defeat in the BBL Cup, then later defeat in the BBL Trophy Final the Eagles were in danger of having a poor season. Fortunately, after a miraculous overtime win against Guildford Heat, they won the BBL League Title.

At the start of the 2008–09 season they were strengthened by the signing of Trey Moore from Cheshire Jets. After an indifferent start, they embarked on a 17 match winning run to become the first team for nearly two decades to retain the BBL title, finishing 8 points ahead of Everton Tigers. They also reached the Semi-Finals of the BBL Cup, losing narrowly to Everton Tigers on aggregate before gaining revenge by beating them home and away in the BBL Trophy Semi-Final. The Eagles beat Guildford Heat at The Spectrum in the Final. In the Play Offs they narrowly avoided an upset after seeing off Cheshire Jets 88–83 before beating Plymouth Raiders to form a match against Everton Tigers once again. Despite 30 points from ex-Eagles Richard Midgley, the Eagles held on for a 97–94 win, therefore winning the treble to cap off their most successful season since the clean sweep.

In the 2009–10 season the Eagles again retained the BBL title, finishing 2 points ahead of Sheffield Sharks. The league title actually came down to the last game of the season with Sheffield Sharks losing their last game of the season 97–95 to Worthing Thunder thanks to Evaldas Zabas' basket 4 seconds from the end. This completed the double for the Eagles who had won the BBL Trophy by beating 111–95 in the Final at The Spectrum. In the BBL Cup Eagles lost 64–61 in the Quarter Finals to Cheshire Jets and in the Play Offs Everton Tigers beat the Eagles 190–158 on aggregate in the two legged Semi-Final.

At the start of the 2010–2011 season it was announced that the Esh Group, along with partners Northumbria University and Northumbrian Water would be the new main sponsors of the Eagles.[2] In the BBL Cup the Eagles were beaten 204–182 on aggregate by the Mersey Tigers in the Semi-Finals. Eagles had won the first leg at home 97–90 but lost the second leg away 114–85. It was the Mersey Tigers who would beat the Eagles in the Semi-Finals of the BBL Trophy also. After a rare first leg draw (82–82) away from home, the Eagles went down 77–74 at home.

The "Clean sweep" of 2011–12[edit]

The club repeated the feat of 2005–06 by winning all of the trophies on offer in a season for a second time. The previous season was the first time since 2003–04 that they had failed to win a trophy. They lost 7 league games, 3 less than in 2005–06, although this time around they were only required to play 30 games, 10 less than in 2005–06. They clinched the clean sweep with a victory over Leicester in the play off final on May 12.

Home arenas[edit]

Metro Radio Arena (1995–2010)
Sport Central (2010–Present)

Season-by-season records[edit]

Season-by-season records[edit]

Season Division Tier Regular Season Post-Season Trophy Cup Head Coach
Finish Played Wins Losses Points Win %
Sunderland 76ers
1987–1988 BBL I 12th 28 8 20 16 0.286 Did Not Qualify 1st Round (LT) Quarter-final (NC) -
1988–1989 BBL I 6th 20 12 8 24 0.600 Lost in Quarter-final to Bracknell Tigers, 0–2 (series) 1st Round (LT) 1st Round (NC) -
1989–1990 BBL I 3rd 28 20 8 40 0.714 Lost in Final to Kingston, 82–87 Semi-final (LT) Runner-up (NC) -
Sunderland Saints
1990–1991 BBL I 2nd 24 18 6 36 0.750 Lost in Final to Kingston, 72–94 1st Round (LT) Winners (NC) -
1991–1992 BBL I 10th 30 3 27 6 0.100 Did Not Qualify 1st Round (LT) 3rd Round (NC) David Elderkin
1992–1993 BBL I 11th 33 6 27 12 0.181 Did Not Qualify 1st Round (LT) 3rd Round (NC) David Elderkin
Sunderland Scorpions
1993–1994 BBL I 10th 36 13 23 26 0.361 Did Not Qualify 1st Round (LT) Quarter-final (NC) David Elderkin
1994–1995 BBL I 13th 36 4 32 8 0.111 Did Not Qualify 1st Round (LT) 4th Round (NC) David Elderkin
Newcastle Comets
1995–1996 BBL I 10th 36 11 25 22 0.440 Did Not Qualify Quarter-final (LT) 4th Round (NC) Tom Hancock
Newcastle Eagles
1996–1997 BBL I 7th 36 21 15 42 0.583 Lost in Quarter-final to London Towers, 1–2 (series) 1st Round (LT) Semi-final (NC) Tom Hancock
1997–1998 BBL I 3rd 36 25 11 50 0.694 Lost in Quarter-final to London Towers, 1–2 (series) Semi-final (LT) 4th Round (NC) Craig Lynch
1998–1999 BBL I 5th 36 21 15 42 0.583 Lost in Quarter-final to London Towers, 1–2 (series) Quarter-final (LT) Semi-final (NC) Craig Lynch
1999–2000 BBL North I 6th 36 10 26 20 0.277 Did Not Qualify Quarter-final (LT) 1st Round (NC) Craig Lynch
2000–2001 BBL North I 3rd 36 20 16 40 0.555 Lost in 1st Round to Birmingham Bullets, 75–80 Runner-up (LT) Quarter-final (NC) Tony Garbelotto
2001–2002 BBL North I 3rd 32 17 15 34 0.531 Lost in Quarter-final to Brighton Bears, 101–102 (OT) Quarter-final (BT) Quarter-final (NC) Tony Garbelotto
2002–2003 BBL I 5th 40 25 15 50 0.625 Lost in Semi-final to Brighton Bears, 83–88 Semi-final (BT) Quarter-final (NC) Fabulous Flournoy
2003–2004 BBL I 6th 36 18 18 36 0.500 Lost in Quarter-final to London Towers, 94–96 1st Round (BT) Quarter-final (BC) Fabulous Flournoy
2004–2005 BBL I 2nd 40 31 9 62 0.775 Winners in Final against Chester Jets, 78–75 Winners (BT) Quarter-final (BC) Fabulous Flournoy
2005–2006 BBL I 1st 40 30 10 60 0.750 Winners in Final against Scottish Rocks, 83–68 Winners (BT) Winners (BC) Fabulous Flournoy
2006–2007 BBL I 3rd 36 25 11 50 0.694 Winners in Final against Scottish Rocks, 95–82 Runner-up (BT) Semi-final (BC) Fabulous Flournoy
2007–2008 BBL I 1st 33 29 4 58 0.878 Lost in Semi-final to Milton Keynes Lions, 63–72 Runner-up (BT) Runner-up (BC) Fabulous Flournoy
2008–2009 BBL I 1st 33 28 5 56 0.848 Winners in Final against Everton Tigers, 87–84 Winners (BT) Semi-final (BC) Fabulous Flournoy
2009–2010 BBL I 1st 36 31 5 62 0.861 Lost in Semi-final to Everton Tigers, 158–190 (agg) Winners (BT) Quarter-final (BC) Fabulous Flournoy
2010–2011 BBL I 2nd 33 24 9 48 0.727 Lost in Semi-final to Sheffield Sharks, 154–166 (agg) Semi-final (BT) Semi-final (BC) Fabulous Flournoy
2011–2012 BBL I 1st 30 23 7 46 0.733 Winners in Final against Leicester Riders, 71–62 Winners (BT) Winners (BC) Fabulous Flournoy
2012–2013 BBL I 2nd 33 25 8 50 0.758 Lost in Final to Leicester Riders, 68–57 Quarter-final (BT) Runner-up (BC) Fabulous Flournoy
2013–2014 BBL I 1st 33 28 5 56 0.848 Lost in Final to Worcester Wolves, 78–90 Quarter-final (BT) Runner-up (BC) Fabulous Flournoy
2014–2015 BBL I - 17 16 1 32 0.941 - - (BT) Winners (BC) Fabulous Flournoy

Club Records[edit]

Accurate as of 7th October 2014 (Includes BBL Championship games only)

  • 3 pts scored – Russ Saunders 716
  • Assists – Fabulous Flournoy – 1,528
  • Blocked shots – Fabulous Flournoy – 320
  • Defensive rebounds – Fabulous Flournoy – 1,497
  • Field Goals scored – Charles Smith – 1,621
  • Free Throws scored – Charles Smith - 761
  • Games Played – Fabulous Flournoy – 393
  • Offensive Rebounds – Darius Defoe – 894
  • Personal Fouls – Fabulous Flournoy – 1,075
  • Points – Charles Smith – 5,897
  • Steals – Fabulous Flournoy – 605
  • Total Rebounds – Fabulous Flournoy – 2,139
  • Turnovers – Fabulous Flournoy – 910



  • BBL Championship Winners: 2005/2006, 2007/2008, 2008/2009 & 2009/10, 2011/12, 2013/14 6
  • BBL Championship Runners Up: 1990/91, 2004/05, 2010/11, 2012/13 4


  • BBL Championship Play Off Winners: 2004/05, 2005/06, 2006/07, 2008/09 & 2011/12 5
  • BBL Championship Play Off Runners Up: 1989/90, 1990/91, 2012/13, 2013/14 4


  • BBL Trophy Winners: 2004/05, 2005/06, 2008/09, 2009/10 & 2011/12 5
  • BBL Trophy Runners Up: 2000/01, 2006/07, & 2007/08 3


  • BBL Cup Winners: 1990/91, 2005/06, 2011/12, 2014/15 4
  • BBL Cup Runners Up: 1989/90, 2007/08, 2012/13, 2013/14 4


Current roster[edit]

The following information is established according to the official websites of the team ( and Britain's top professional league, the BBL (

Newcastle Eagles roster
Players Coaches
Pos. # Nat. Name Ht.
F 6 United Kingdom Thomson, Stuart 70017800000000000006 ft 6 in (1.98 m)
G 9 United Kingdom Matthew, Eddie 70017200000000000006 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
F 10 United States United Kingdom Smith, Charles (C) 70017800000000000006 ft 6 in (1.98 m)
F 11 United Kingdom Thomson, Andrew 70018100000000000006 ft 9 in (2.06 m)
F/C 13 United Kingdom Dominica Defoe, Darius 70018100000000000006 ft 9 in (2.06 m)
F 14 United States Martin, Scott 70018000000000000006 ft 8 in (2.03 m)
G/F 20 United States United Kingdom Flournoy, Fabulous 70017500000000000006 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
SG 21 United States United Kingdom Lasker, Andrew 70017300000000000006 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
G 22 United States Taylor, Ricky 70017700000000000006 ft 5 in (1.96 m)
PG 44 United States Fletcher, Rahmon 70017000000000000005 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Head coach
Assistant coach(es)
  • United Kingdom David Forrester
  • United Kingdom Ian Macleod

  • (C) Team captain
  • Injured Injured

Updated: 26th September 2014

Notable former players[edit]


Retired numbers[edit]

Hall of Fame[edit]

  • TJ Walker 2000–2007
  • Lynard Stewart 2007–2010


Player/Coach – Fab Flournoy

Assistant Coaches – Billy Spragg, Dave Forrester and Marc Steutel

External links[edit]


  1. ^ "Sport Central is new nest for Newcastle Eagles – Northumbria University, Newcastle UK". Northumbria University. Retrieved 20 March 2011. 
  2. ^ "Sky's the limit for Newcastle Eagles". Bdaily Business Network Northeast. Retrieved 20 March 2011.