|League||National Basketball League|
|History||Palmerston North Jets
|Location||Palmerston North, Manawatu, New Zealand|
|Team colours||Green, White, Black|
|Main sponsor||Breakers Cafe Bar|
|Head coach||Darron Larsen|
The Manawatu Jets, formerly known as the Palmerston North Jets, are a professional basketball team that play in the New Zealand National Basketball League. They play their home games at Arena Manawatu in Palmerston North, New Zealand. The team boasts several high profile players including experienced American guard Brandon Jenkins, New Zealand Breakers development player Jordan Ngatai, and several former or current Tall Blacks such as Jeremiah Trueman. The head coach is Darron Larsen, who is a former Jets player and New Zealand Universities coach.
The team deliver thousands of hours of community basketball coaching each year via programmes to increase interest and participation in basketball. Much of this work is funded through community trusts such as NZCT and Eastern and Central Community Trust.
|Manawatu Jets roster|
The Jets' home stadium is Arena 2, Arena Manawatu, minutes away from the Palmerston North Central Business District. Arena 2 offers first class facilities to spectators, the teams and to the sponsors. With an ability to accommodate up to 5,000 people, Arena 2 comprises an extensive array of convenient features and amenities.
The 2013 season started with a lot of hope as the roster that previous coach Ryan Weisenberg had pulled together was put in the hands of Mike Kalavros, a Greek coach who inherited the squad weeks before the season's start. Despite holding New Zealand citizenship, Marcel Jones played as the Jets' second import in 2013 alongside Chris Hagan, because of a the newly placed league rule where teams can only field one naturalised New Zealand player. Captain Nick Horvath already filled that spot.
Ultimately, the season was a disappointment as the Jets finished fifth and missed the playoffs. A positive came, however, with Horvath being named to the All-Star five. Kalavros departed the Jets prior to the season's conclusion, as assistant coach Darron Larsen took over as head coach for the final games of the season.
The Jets started the 2014 season with a new head coach, Darron Larsen, who was returning for his second stint as head coach after having led the team from 2005 to 2007. Early season results did not fall the Jets way, with the injury to centre Nick Horvath proving costly. The team ultimately finished one game short of the playoffs, finishing the season in fifth place with a nine win, nine loss record. The season also marked the final year for veteran guard Kaine Hokianga, who finished his career with 236 NBL games over 14 years, 11 of them with the Jets.
The 2015 season started with the announcement of head coach Darron Larsen signing on for another season, providing some stability to the leadership and style of play for the franchise. Player announcements began in early 2015, with powerful big man Nick Horvath the first to commit to the team. Horvath is one of the premier centres to ever play in New Zealand and despite some well publicised injury concerns, remains a force to be reckoned with in the league. Experienced point guard Brandon Jenkins signed on for a second season, while Jets stalwart and former Tall Black Jeremiah Trueman recommitted days later. In the wake of Trueman re-signing, youngster Derone Raukawa was also confirmed as returning. Next came the signings of new youngsters in New Zealand Breakers development player Jordan Ngatai, former Mountainair Sid Adams, former Cairns Taipans development player Brook Ruscoe, and American-born college player Bridge Lavey who is illegible to play as a local due to having a Kiwi mother.
- Sports is our business. Community is our Passion
- Venues Palmerston North – Arena 2
- Kalavros heads for NBL's fast lane
- Jones 'staying put' despite overture
- 2013 NBL Final Four
- Kalavros leaves Jets
- Larsen off bench as Jets head coach
- Horvath out of action
- Hokianga sent off in style, Manawatu turn it on
- Larsen agrees to another year as Jets coach
- Jets hoping to heal Horvath
- Jenkins Returning To Jets
- Trueman Returns To Jets
- Horvath’s Status In Doubt For Jets
- Jets Sign Ruscoe and Lavey
- Nick Horvath let go by Manawatu Jets
- Manawatu Jets official website
- Arena Manawatu official website
- Basketball New Zealand official website