West Adelaide Bearcats
|West Adelaide Bearcats|
|Arena||Pt. Adelaide Rec Centre (current)
Apollo Stadium (former)
|Team colours||Black and Red|
|Championships||1982 (NBL champions)|
In 1979 the West Adelaide Bearcats were a foundation club in the National Basketball League (NBL) before merging with the Adelaide 36ers in 1985. West's American import player/coach Ken Richardson had the honor of being the first ever winner of the NBL's Most Valuable Player award in the league's inaugural season.
Founded in 1946, the Bearcats (known at the time as the West Adelaide Arcacia Bearcats) won the 1982 NBL Grand Final 80–74 against the Geelong Cats at the Broadmeadow Basketball Stadium in Newcastle. During the 1982 regular season West Adelaide finished first with a 21–5 win/loss record. The Bearcats, captain/coached by Richardson, were led by 1982 NBL MVP Al Green with 26.5 points per game and Leroy Loggins with 25 ppg. Green led the team with 2.4 assists per game while Loggins was the leading rebounder with 8.5 per game. Other star players on the 1982 NBL championship team were Brad Dalton as well as Olympians Peter Ali and Ray Wood.
One of the Bearcats best ever players, US-born guard Al Green was the Bearcats second and last NBL MVP winner in the 1982 championship season. Although he won the MVP award he was controversially not named to the All NBL First Team. Leroy Loggins, a future three time NBL MVP with the Brisbane Bullets, was the only West player to be selected to the 1982 All NBL First Team
As of the 2013–14 NBL season, West Adelaide hold the record for the most number of NBL MVP's to play on one championship team. The 1982 championship team featured the leagues inaugural MVP Ken Richardson, 1982 MVP Al Green, and three time league MVP Leroy Loggins (1984, 1986, 1987).
West Adelaide also made Grand Final appearances in 1980 where they lost 88-113 to the St Kilda Saints in Launceston, and in 1983 where they lost 73-75 to the Phil Smyth led Canberra Cannons in Melbourne.
The club merged with the Adelaide 36ers at the end of the 1984 season, which was the last the Bearcats played in their own right. Bearcats players Peter Ali, Al Green and Mike McKay were among those who would go on to win the NBL championship with the 36ers in 1986.
West Adelaide currently competes in the ABA, and is the most successful State League team in South Australia, the club having claimed 14 Central Australian Basketball League men's championships and five women's titles. The club Senior Men's team is currently coached by Brendan Mann, assistant coach Graham Kubank and captained by Anthony Spadavecchia. The Senior Women's is coached by Trudie Hopgood, assisted by Shane Kaesler and captained by Alice Gee.
The Division 2 men's team has rotating leadership throughout the junior players. The Division 3 men's team is currently captained by Peter Keaney. The Division 4 men's team is currently captained by Scott Leaver.
|2013 West Adelaide Bearcats ABA roster|
Mens Honour Roll
|NBL Championships:||1 (1982)|
|NBL Finals Appearances:||5 (1979–1983)|
|NBL Grand Final Appearances:||3 (1980, 1982, 1983)|
|NBL Most Valuable Players:||Ken Richardson (1979), Al Green (1982)|
|NBL Grand Final MVPs:||Leroy Loggins (1982)|
|All-NBL First Team:||Ken Richardson (1980), Al Green (1981), Leroy Loggins (1982, 1983)|
|NBL Best Defensive Player:||Ray Wood (1980, 1981)|