NBA planning possible ‘Play Ins’ to complete the 2020 Season

Up until now the fans have been left wondering what may happen with the NBA playoffs this year. Well it seems there is some action stirring at the games upper echelon executive.

Disney World in Orlando Florida may well host the finals this year but before that is confirmed here’s an article of interest from ‘The Bleachers’

NBA Reportedly Considering Play-in Restart for Pelicans, Blazers, Spurs, Kings

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As the NBA examines all of the possibilities for restarting the 2019-20 season, the league might open the door for the teams narrowly on the outside of the Western Conference playoff picture to slide into the postseason.

The Memphis Grizzlies are eighth in the West at 32-33. The Portland Trail Blazers, New Orleans Pelicans and Sacramento Kings are all 3.5 games back of Memphis, while the San Antonio Spurs are four games behind the eighth seed.

According to ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne and Adrian Wojnarowski, the NBA is weighing a possible play-in scenario involving those four teams.

The play-in format may extend to the Eastern Conference as well, with Shelburne and Wojnarowski reporting a “playoffs-plus idea” is being considered in which 20 to 24 teams would be involved.

The Athletic’s Sam Amick added that “momentum seems to be going against a 30-team approach.”

While nothing is finalized, NBA spokesperson Mike Bass confirmed the league is looking into moving games to the Walt Disney Resort in Orlando, Florida.

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Some will reasonably argue that it wouldn’t be fair to end the regular season now and start the playoffs with the top eight teams from each conference. Plus, 70 games is the number at which franchises fulfill their local television contracts.

Given all of the logistics the NBA would need to have in place, having all 30 teams travel to Orlando might be unfeasible, though, since it would increase the possible exposure of COVID-19.

Blazers star Damian Lillard may have spoken for some of his colleagues, too, when he told Yahoo Sports’ Chris Haynes he wouldn’t want to play without some hope of reaching the postseason:

“If we come back and they’re just like, ‘We’re adding a few games to finish the regular season,’ and they’re throwing us out there for meaningless games and we don’t have a true opportunity to get into the playoffs, I’m going to be with my team because I’m a part of the team. But I’m not going to be participating. I’m telling you that right now. And you can put that in there.”

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver is holding a conference call with general managers on Thursday and the board of governors on Friday. Some had hoped that a final plan would be revealed by the end of the week.

However, Shelburne and Wojnarowski wrote that the NBA “has no current expectation that a decision on a finalized plan will emerge” as an immediate result of the calls.

Source: bleacherreport.com

Here in Australia, local competition is beginning to gear up for a return after lockdown.

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Nellakir have been working on several iconic projects on major stadiums, both public and private. As well, work continues on the Netball Victoria HQ’s new courts at the Royal Park complex.

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For all installation, maintenance and professional scheduled cleaning of premium Sprung Timber Sports Flooring, always call Victoria and Tasmania’s leading experts for advice and quotations – Nellakir Pty Ltd. Nellakir use ASF Horner Timber Sports Flooring systems exclusively. The ASF Horner systems are all FIBA approved.

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So as things return to normal, call Nellakir now on 03 9467 6126 and arrange an obligation-free consultation on all your premium Sports Flooring needs.

Nellakir – Champion flooring for present and future champions.

It’s simply the best.

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Nellakir helps young athletes reach their goals by providing the highest quality Sprung Timber Sports Floor playing surfaces.

Good News! Basketball Local Competitions Return.

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For some time now, all local sporting competitions have been restricted due to Covid-19 and the lockdown precautions now applied. However today Basketball Australia has set out the ground rules for the return of Community Basketball post lockdown.

Community basketball due to resume under set guidelines

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No side-by-side games, constant hand sanitising and as few supporters as possible are among the suggested practices for the return of community basketball.

Basketball Australia will release its ‘Return to Basketball’ guidelines on Wednesday and the information will inform what each state and local association do when trying to put thousands of local basketballers back on court.

Federal and state regulations will still dictate when indoor sports can start again, this is why there is no resumption date listed, but the guidelines do paint a picture for how community basketball will look.

The guidelines make it clear that in smaller stadiums only some courts will able to be used and a strict stadium capacity be maintained at all venues.

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All state and territory bodies worked with Basketball Australia on the guidelines, which were based on the federal government’s national principles for the resumption of sport and the Australian Institute of Sport framework for re-booting sport.

AIS chief medical officer Dr David Hughes and Basketball Australia chief medical officer Dr Peter Harcourt offered their expert advice for the guidelines.

“We can all see how we are adapting quickly at the local level and we imagine it will be the same for basketball,” BA chief executive Jerril Rechter said.

“The way people walk into the venue, the way they leave the venue, the way they need to be on court and the practices we need to put in place will become natural and our basketball sector is ready to show we have done a huge [amount] of work for the rebound of the sport.”

For junior basketball the guidelines suggest a small number of parents can watch and only from a separated, socially distanced location like an upper grandstand. There will need to be distance between each active court.

Players will be advised to not arrive more than 10 minutes before their game while stadiums will be asked to have separate entry and exit points plus extra time between games to allow players to leave and new teams to enter.

Balls will need to be sanitised and changed each game while all unnecessary contact including “high fives” will be outlawed.

Stadiums will also need their own penalties for teams or people who do not follow the rules.

Players and referees will also be asked to wash with soap and water at home pre-game and be changed into their playing gear before arrival.

Opening jump balls will likely be replaced with “rock, paper, scissors” for the first possession.

Rechter said people were adapting in everyday life and would do so at local basketball.

“People are quite buoyant about the fact junior basketball will be able to return,” Rechter said.

“There are different ways we will need to think about junior basketball but a lot of the facilities have that capacity where parents and guardians can be removed [seated at a distance] and can still [have] oversight of their kids.”

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Source: smh.com.au

It’s exciting to contemplate returning to ‘tread the boards’ in the not too distant future. But the question for many who operate stadiums and courts is ‘will we be ready?’

Call Nellakir now for a free no-obligation quote on all aspects of Timber Sports Flooring maintenance and preparation. Nellakir are Victoria’s leading experts in the installation and maintenance of all Sprung Timber Sports Flooring. Nellakir use ASF/Horner Sports Flooring systems exclusively which carry the FIBA international competition approval. Re-coating, re-marking (lines, logos) and if required re-sanding as well as a specific professional scheduled cleaning process – you can trust Nellakir to provide a premium playing surface for all returning competitors – from Junior League through to NBL competition.

Call Nellakir now on 03 9467 6126 for a free, no-obligation consultation with our expert technicians, or leave your details here for a prompt reply.

Trust Nellakir – They’re simply the best.

Timber Sports Flooring for Champions.

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Nellakir helps young athletes reach their goals by providing the highest quality Sprung Timber Sports Floor playing surfaces.

Is this really the end for Andrew Bogut? Or just a ‘bad day at the office’? Sydney Kings destroyed by Melbourne United.

At 7ft tall in the old imperial measure, Andrew Bogut has been the consummate player. Performing at the highest level in the NBA, the world’s premium basketball competition. Bogut is currently listed with Golden State Warriors and is part of the Sydney kings NBL team here in Australia. Approaching 36 years of age, has time caught up with him? We doubt it but his opponents had no caution in dissing him!

From the Sydney Kings v Melbourne United game on Monday night the 2nd of March.

Corey Williams defends tweet about Andrew Bogut after Melbourne United massacres Sydney Kings

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NBL analyst Corey Williams must have had some backlash to his tweets about Andrew Bogut after the Sydney Kings were thrashed by Melbourne United on Monday night.

If you missed them, Williams placed the blame for Sydney’s 125-80 defeat squarely at the feet of the Aussie centre, who he believed was “murdered” by Melbourne Opponent Shawn Long.

Aussie basketball great Shane Heal replied to Williams’ post reminding him he’d predicted the Kings would sweep the series, which drew an even spicier response.

“I was wrong,” he wrote. “Keep it 100 Hammer. Yes you are an ex-King, but Bogut gettin’ bodied and ain’t doin’ s***. Say it and don’t sit on the fence protecting your Boomer.”

On Tuesday afternoon, Williams posted a video to Twitter explaining his language.

“I’m from New York City and in basketball culture in New York — in America (but) mainly New York — if a player is getting outplayed, badly, and it’s completely one-sided, we don’t say ‘he’s severely outplaying him, the guy didn’t show up to work today’. We don’t say that, we say ‘he killed him, he murdered him, he destroyed him, he bodied him’,” Williams said.

“That’s the level of impact. It is catastrophic, the way this player is outplaying the other player.

“My nickname is Homicide, because of the fact that in my day I committed basketball homicide on the opposition. I didn’t make this up, this is what was said. My name was based on a style of play.

“That’s all it is. Nothing more, nothing less. You don’t have to try to spin this or think it’s something else. Because it is isn’t.”

Melbourne United wrote themselves into the NBL record books after pumping the Kings to draw level in their best-of-three semi-final series.

Coming off a stunning late collapse in game one, United shrugged off the disappointment by crushing the Kings on Monday night in a performance that had the Melbourne Arena crowd in raptures.

The 45-point margin was the largest in any NBL game since matches dropped from 48 minutes to 40 in 2010.

Sydney trailed 38-31 when United dropped 38 consecutive points through the second and third quarters to leave the minor premiers shell-shocked, setting up a blockbuster series decider in Sydney on Thursday.

United outscored Sydney 32-7 in the second period to lead by 27 at halftime but were not content with their opening salvo, piling on the first 18 points of the third quarter with the margin blowing out to 58 points at one stage.

They passed the century mark before three-quarter time, entering the final stanza with 103 — the highest score by any team with 10 minutes remaining in NBL history.

Shawn Long (26 points, 11 rebounds) and Melo Trimble (21 points) were the catalysts for Melbourne’s triumph with the import duo combining for 24 points in the decisive second-quarter charge.

Bogut failed to score and grabbed just two rebounds as he struggled to solve the Long puzzle. “Bogut’s in no-mans land at the moment, he doesn’t know whether to come up or not,” former NBL coach Brendan Joyce said in commentary for SEN. “Sydney need to make an adjustment.”

Coach Dean Vickerman praised his players on the way they bounced back from conceding a 16-point lead in Saturday’s 86-80 defeat in Sydney.

“We were pissed off from the other night,” Vickerman said. “I thought we played well enough up there and I thought these guys responded really well.”

Stanton Kidd added 18 after starting in place of 300-gamer David Barlow, nailing three triples to lay the platform as United racked up 45 points in the third quarter.

Jae’Sean Tate (18 points) was the lone bright spot in a horror night for Sydney, leaving coach Will Weaver to pick up the pieces ahead of game three.

“I clearly felt they were the more aggressive team,” Weaver said after the loss. “That’s the fun of the finals I guess, is that everyone’s trying to manage the seesaw of emotions and compose themselves.”

 

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Shawn Long celebrates after being fouled by Andrew Bogut

 

United made a confident start with a dominant stretch through the middle part of the first quarter, making the most of Sydney’s four first-quarter turnovers including Tate’s unsportsmanlike foul on Mitch McCarron with the Kings in possession of the ball.

The Kings rallied near the end of the opening period to cut Melbourne’s lead to 26-24 but that was their last meaningful period of the game as Long and Trimble powered United’s matchwinning offensive burst.

Up 58-31 at halftime, Kidd opened the second half with a three-pointer and the points kept coming for the home side, Sydney unable to stem the flow as United closed the third quarter with an unassailable 103-55 advantage.

Source: news.com.au

The Sydney Kings maintain that their star ‘just had an off night’, and he can bounce back in Game Three to lock in an NBL Grand Final berth for the Kings.

Champions often rise to the occasion and it’s very possible Andrew will do the same. It should make for an exciting contest.

In Australia today, thousands of young kids look to Andrew Bogut and Ben Simmons, Australian champions of the sport for inspiration. Playing in regional centres, state schools (Primary and Secondary) and in a wide range of junior competitions, there is always the chance that out there, the next Andrew Bogut or Ben Simmons is ‘treading the boards’ and creating a pathway to a professional career.

Nellakir are the premium Construction and Installation experts in Victoria and Tasmania for Sprung Timber Sports Flooring. The company utilises ASF/Horner Sports Flooring Systems exclusively. Nellakir also provide a professional annual maintenance service that includes re-surfacing and re-lining. Re-sanding is also provided as required (usually in 7 year intervals).

To ensure your stadium or court is always the perfect playing surface, Nellakir also offer a fully scheduled professional court cleaning service.

Don’t delay, call now on 03 9467 6126 or leave your details here for a prompt reply. Book a consultation with one of our Timber Sports Flooring Technicians and ensure your court is always presented in premium condition.

Nellakir – Premium Timber Sports Flooring for Champions – and Future Champions.

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Nellakir helps young athletes reach their goals by providing the highest quality Sprung Timber Sports Floor playing surfaces.

Young Aussie Boomers fall to NZ Tall Blacks

With the Olympic Games scheduled in the not too distant future, the full preparation period for National teams is now looming large.

In the latest of these games, Australia’s Boomers have been soundly beaten by the NZ Tall Blacks. It was actually a qualifying game for the FIBA Asia Cup of 2021.

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Read about it here…

NZ Stars Turn Missing Finals Pain into Win Over Boomers

Motivated by Brisbane Bullets and New Zealand Breakers players who just missed NBL Finals spots and then by two guards gearing up for the post-season, the Tall Blacks delivered an impressive showing to beat the Australian Boomers 108-98 on Thursday.

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The game was the first match in the qualifying stages for the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup and the Tall Blacks made a winning start to Group C competition in an impressive display after the Boomers started on fire hitting the game’s first nine points at Brisbane’s Nissan Arena.

New Zealand overcame the slow start to turn on the impressive performance in Pero Cameron’s first game in charge as coach. It was the Tall Blacks’ first win over the Boomers since 2009 breaking a run of nine straight defeats, and doubling as their third ever victory on Australian soil.

It’s a very much a youthful Boomers team that was under the coach of Will Weaver for the first time but they still kept fighting right to the end only to be knocked back by New Zealand.

Less than a week after being part of Brisbane’s massive 36-point win on the same court against the Cairns Taipans that gave the Bullets a finals sniff in the NBL, Reuben Te Rangi made up for a frustrating campaign at club land with a brilliant performance for the Tall Blacks.

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Even though that huge win wasn’t quite enough for a finals spot for the Bullets, Te Rangi put that behind him and delivered 21 points, six rebounds and five assists.

Having been the NBL’s Most Improved Player and Best Sixth Man 12 months ago, it was a 2019/20 campaign to forget for Te Rangi, but he didn’t let that bother him on Thursday night going on to shoot 8/14 from the field and 4/7 from deep in 31 minutes.

Another player who would have been frustrated to not be preparing for an NBL finals campaign right now was Rob Loe. The Breakers finished the season on fire but narrowly missed the post-season.

But Loe finished the season in career-best form and carried that into the Asian Cup qualifier with 19 points, nine rebounds, three assists and two steals for his country including a late dagger three to seal the deal.

Then there was Loe’s Breakers teammate Jordan Ngatai who also shook off the disappointment of missing NBL finals to produce 19 points including three triples.

Shea Ili (21 points, six rebounds, five assists) and Jarrod Kenny (10 points, two assists) are two players with NBL finals to look forward to at Melbourne and Cairns respectively, and both shared the point guard duties impressively for New Zealand.

Dion Prewster was impressive as well with 10 points and four rebounds.

Tall Blacks coach Pero Cameron was proud of the efforts of his team and the way the game was played in his first time officially in charge of New Zealand.

“Firstly there’s nothing like being in the hot seat and having these last three days, and some of the things our players have dealt with have been phenomenal. I just have to congratulate and acknowledge their commitment and support to the Tall Blacks singlet,” Cameron said.

“I’m just so happy to have this job and I think for anyone to coach their own country, it’s an amazing feeling. As far as this game goes, for what it was it was good to see all the players out there just giving their all.

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“I felt the energy levels were high and that type of basketball is entertaining. I don’t mind if it’s not entertaining as long as I win, but I thought both sides went at it hammer and tongs, and my boys played really well.

There were a host of Boomers debutants and Angus Glover (eight points, five rebounds), Sunday Dech (eight points), Sam Froling, Kyle Adnam (12 points) and Dane Pineau (two points) all had their moments in their first appearances in the senior national team.

Illawarra Hawks 283-game veteran Todd Blanchfield top-scored for the Boomers with 17 points and six rebounds with Nathan Sobey adding 13 points, four boards three assists and three steals, Matt Hodgson 11 points and nine rebounds, and Jason Cadee 11 points, eight boards and five assists.

First-time Boomers coach Will Weaver ultimately just felt the Tall Blacks shooting the ball better and Australia missing 13 free-throws were significant factors in the result.

“We shot it decent from three but the free-throw line was probably the space you’d say we would regret some of those opportunities,” Weaver said.

“But that also comes down to some of the fatigue with these guys coming off the season and it was a physical game. It was fast and both teams were running after makes, but 50 per cent from the free-throw line rarely gets it done in a close game.”

But moving forward, Weaver is excited to be blooding so many fresh faces into the Boomers setup.

“We are trying to sew the seeds that will be reaped down the line. This is a four-year cycle that we’re preparing to endeavour to perform well at the end of,” Weaver said.

“A big part in that is investing in the younger players and even though we only had two practices, those guys have gotten a lot better and they will be better still against Hong Kong and along down the line. It just develops the base of talent we have to select from in these situations.”

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Both teams back up to play another game on Sunday with the Tall Blacks away to Tai Wesley and Guam while the Boomers host Hong Kong back at Nissan Arena.

Source: nbl.com.au

Nellakir support the advancement of Basketball in Australia and are the leading experts in the installation of all sprung Timber Sports Flooring in Victoria and Tasmania.

With new Multipurpose Sports Flooring being installed this month at Sirius College Keysborough as well as Twin Rivers Primary in Echuca (another State Government PPP Project), the team is very busy.

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Then in March, the Victorian Netball and Hockey Centre project commences with 11 new professional Sprung Timber Courts being constructed using full stumped ASF/Horner Sports Flooring Systems.

For all your Timber Sports Flooring requirements – Installation, maintenance and scheduled court cleaning, call Nellakir on 03 9467 6126 for a prompt response. Schedule a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss your particular needs. Or simply leave your details here for a prompt response.

Nellakir – Sports Flooring for Champions.

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Nellakir helps young athletes reach their goals by providing the highest quality Sprung Timber Sports Floor playing surfaces.

Ben Simmons – All Star 2020 – From Melbourne to Chicago.

From Box Hill Secondary College to the NBA. Born in Fitzroy, now playing for the Philadelphia 76’s. He could have been a sharp on-baller for the bombers in the AFL after playing A-Grade for Whitefriars College as a youth, but instead he chose Basketball. Now from humble beginnings at the Knox Raiders he’s lining up with LeBron’s All Stars in Chicago this coming weekend.

Here’s the lowdown on his career development and progress this year…

By The Numbers: Ben Simmons

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Ben Simmons is set to compete in his second All-Star Game in Chicago as he’ll take the floor as part of Team LeBron.

In his first All-Star appearance last season, the Aussie finished with 10 points, seven assists and six rebounds on a perfect 5-for-5 shooting in just under 17 minutes of action.

Despite the relative turmoil in Philadelphia for a 76ers team that has thus far underachieved, it’s impossible to deny that Simmons has once again performed at an All-Star level and is deserving of the All-Star honour.

Let’s go by the numbers to help articulate just how good Simmons has been so far this season.

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216 – Deflections

The biggest leap that Simmons has made this season has come on the defensive end, where he’s emerged as a legitimate Defensive Player of the Year candidate.

Not only does he lead the league in steals, he’s also first in deflections, which further illustrates his ability to disrupt anything and everything. The fact that at 6’10” he has the ability to cause so much chaos shouldn’t go understated.

Only three other players in NBA history 6’10” or taller have ever averaged over two steals per game. Simmons could become the first player that tall to lead the entire league in steals.

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His development into a versatile stopper capable of legitimately guarding all five positions could further elevate the ceiling for a player still just scratching the surface of his potential.

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Toronto Raptors center Serge Ibaka (9) charges Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons (25) during the second half of an NBA Eastern Conference semifinal basketball game in Toronto on Sunday, May 12, 2019. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press via AP)

+7.0 – Scoring increase

In Philadelphia’s first game after the calendar flipped to 2020, Simmons poured in 29 points on what at the time was a season-high 20 shots. Although the 76ers lost that game to the Houston Rockets, it proved to be a turning point of sorts for Simmons, who has looked like a completely different player since.

Over his first 34 games, Simmons averaged just 14.5 points per game, which was over two fewer than last season when he earned his first trip to the All-Star Game. Over that span, he had just one 25-point game, which ranked fifth on the team and was fewer than the likes of Nemanja Bjelica, Ish Smith, Jordan McRae and Garrett Temple to name a few.

Scoring isn’t everything, particularly in the case of Simmons, but that’s not great.

Then came that game against Houston which ignited a torrid stretch. In 19 games since, he’s averaging 21.5 points per game, an increase of 7.0 PPG from before the calendar flipped to 2020. While 10 of those games came without Joel Embiid in the lineup, he also has three 25-point games over that span alongside his fellow All-Star teammate.

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He’s actively playing a larger role in the offense, shooting more often and getting to the line more frequently.

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60 – Secondary assists

He’s long been one of the best passers in the league and this year is no exception.

While Simmons ranks fifth in the NBA in assists per game, he actually ranks third in potential assists per game as the 76ers take over 16 shots per game directly off his passes, a figure which trails only LeBron James and Trae Young.

One of the beautiful aspects of Ben’s passing is that he sees the pass before the pass like few others.

The secondary assist – or hockey assist – is a pass that leads to a pass which leads to a made shot. They don’t show up in the box score, but they’re indicative of a player knowing how to move the ball quickly and find teammates in positions where they can then exploit the D.

So far this season, he has 60 of them, which leads the entire league and is nearly twice as many as anyone else on the 76ers.

The unselfish playmaking is a major reason why Simmons should be a desirable teammate this upcoming weekend in Chicago as he’s a threat to wrack up the dimes.

Source: sportingnews.com

It’s not surprising Australia is now producing such prodigious stars of the NBA competition. Australia-wide since 2007 there has been an explosion of high quality FIBA approved Sprung Timber Sports Flooring, enabling real professional progress for players and the game.

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Nellakir are proud to be associated with the sport and its expansion. Nellakir are Victoria and Tasmania’s premier Timber Sports Flooring experts, installing and maintaining ASF/Horner FIBA approved Timber Sports Flooring systems exclusively.

Whether you play at the VBA headquarters in Wantirna, Eagle Stadium in Werribee, the Bendigo Stadium or the Casey Stadium in Cranbourne (plus a host of others) you will be enjoying a quality Nellakir installation.

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In fact, even if your competition is using a school facility constructed under the State Government’s PPP (Public Private Partnership) program, there is a 9/10 chance you are competing a quality Timber Sports Floor from Nellakir.

Nellakir provide expert annual maintenance programs for all Timber Sports Flooring, including Re-coating, Linemarking and when required Re-sanding and Re-surfacing.

Nellakir now also offer professional scheduled cleaning of all Timber Sports Flooring as part of an overall care program for your valuable Sports Flooring.

Don’t delay, call now on 03 9467 6126 and book a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our professional technicians to ensure premium performance and longevity for your stadium’s Sprung Timber Sports Flooring. Or it may be that it’s time to completely replace your current stadium flooring – Nellakir can provide a detailed quotation for all such works upon request.

Alternatively leave your details here for a prompt reply.

Always select Nellakir for expert professional service and advice.

Nellakir – Championship flooring for present and future Champions.

The World of Basketball is Changing – or is it? – USA Out of World Cup

For the first time since 2006, the USA won’t win Gold. And for the first time ever Australia’s Boomers have made it to through to the semi finals.

Perhaps what this shows is two things. First the NBA fiercely protects its players. Of the 35 players selected last year for the Team America squad only 4 ended up playing.

The second factor is that the sport is becoming truly global. Based on their talent, it could well be the Boomers will be a force to be reckoned with. Yes we can dream. The Boomers meet its nemesis Spain. Spain denied the Boomers a Bronze Medal in Rio De Janero at the last Olympics. Game Time 6pm Friday 13th.

Read about it all here…

USA knocked out of FIBA basketball World Cup, Australia advances to semi-finals for first time

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The Boomers have flown into the semi-finals of the FIBA basketball World Cup, but the favourites and reigning champion US team are out after suffering a shock defeat to France.

French star Evan Fournier scored 22 points and Rudy Gobert had 21 points with 16 rebounds as France beat the US 89-79, rallying from a seven-point, fourth-quarter deficit to pull off the upset.

For the first time since 2006, the US sent NBA players to a major international tournament and won’t win gold.

This is the first time the US will not win a medal at the World Cup since being stunned on home soil in 2002.

“[We’ve] just got to take it like a man at this point,” US guard Kemba Walker said.

“We lost. There’s nothing we can do. We competed. We’ve been competing since day one that we got to training camp. But we gave it everything we’ve got.

“I know we’re Team USA and things of that nature and they’ve been winning for a lot of years, but you know, we didn’t get a chance to pull it off.”

The US team was heavily undermanned heading into the tournament, with CJ McCollum — a player who was initially selected but later withdrew from the squad — saying that a fear of failure could have been to blame.

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‘What did you expect?’

Many pundits in the US were writing Team USA off before they even arrived in China.

Suffering a first-ever defeat to the Boomers in Melbourne before the World Cup just added fuel to the fire as journalists said the early exit came as no surprise.

“What’d you expect? I mean you rolled out your C team,” Former NBA star Raja Bell said.

“I’m not surprised that they ended up getting beat by someone because while they’re good players, they’re not the best that we have to offer.”

The US team had several high-profile players pull out of the squad in the early stages of training, with the AP reporting that of the 35 players originally picked last year, just four made it to China.

That led some US-based journalists to question the selection process.

“[It] doesn’t matter who is on the team, and I couldn’t be more proud of these 12 guys who sacrificed their summer to come here, having never played with each other before,” US coach Gregg Popovich said.

“They put themselves in the arena and competed, and they deserve credit for that, just like France deserves credit for winning. It’s not about, ‘Well, the United States didn’t have their other guys’.

“There’s no such thing as other guys. These are the guys that were here, and they did a great job, and I’m very proud of them.”

The US had won 58 consecutive tournament games in FIBA and Olympic competition, starting with the bronze-medal game at the 2006 World Championships and continuing through every FIBA Americas, World Cup and Olympics event since.

It was bidding to become the first nation to win three consecutive World Cups, after winning three straight Olympic golds in that span but will now focus on the Olympics in Japan next year.

“Any loss hurts,” Popovich said.

“And in this situation, it hurts more.

“But life goes on. This is very important and we would have loved to have won … but we’re all grown, we all have families and lives and life goes on.”

Boomers qualify for World Cup semis

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The Aussie Boomers have qualified for the Basketball World Cup semi-finals for the first time, after defeating Czech Republic 82-70 in China.

The Boomers, who had never gone beyond the quarter-finals in 11 previous appearances, defeated the tournament debutants on Wednesday night, and will meet Spain on Friday.

It was Spain who broke Australian hearts at the last Olympics by denying the Boomers a first ever medal in global competition by prevailing in the bronze medal match.

Meanwhile, France has upset the United States after winning 89-79 and will also advance to the semi-finals where they will take on Argentina.

This was Australia’s sixth straight win in China, and in doing so, they avoided becoming the latest surprise casualty at this unpredictable World Cup.

“They caused us to be a little anxious early,” Boomers coach Andrej Lemanis said.

“It took a while to find our rhythm offensively but once we did I thought we did a nice job.”

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San Antonio Spurs’ Patty Mills was again the standout, leading the scoring with 24 points.

The 31-year-old guard also had six assists and four rebounds.

Argentina stunned favourites Serbia on Tuesday while reigning two-time champions the United States were dumped out by France on Wednesday.

Australia were heavy favourites in Shanghai against the Czechs, who bravely hung on until midway through the third quarter, when the Boomers cranked up the pressure.

Australia had survived the World Cup “Group of Death” also including Canada, Senegal and Lithuania, before beating the Dominican Republic and then fellow semi-finalists France in a thriller.

Veteran Australian Andrew Bogut was again loudly booed throughout by fans in Shanghai upset with a tweet he wrote in July about Chinese swimming star Sun Yang.

He goaded the crowd afterwards with a dance as he came off the court.

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Source: abc.net.au

Nellakir are Victoria and Tasmania’s leading experts in Timber Sports Flooring. From full construction to annual maintenance and scheduled court cleaning, it’s simply one call – Nellakir – 03 9467 6126.

Sports Flooring for Champions

Go Boomers!

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Nellakir helps young athletes reach their goals by providing the highest quality Sprung Timber Sports Floor playing surfaces.

Nearly a clean sweep! Raptors take the title 4-2

For the first time a team from outside the US has taken the NBA Championships – the Toronto Raptors. The Raptors won the last game – game 6 – 114/110. So it was still a close result. But winners are grinners!

Ok so it wasn’t really close to a clean sweep, but a clean sweep is what you get when you decide to engage Nellakir for your regular maintenance on your premium Timber Sports Flooring.

Engage Victoria’s leading experts to ensure you provide the perfect playing surface for every game.

Nellakir are the leading experts in the Construction and Maintenance of all Timber Sports Flooring, using ASF/Horner timber flooring for all Timber Sports Flooring it constructs and installs. Ensure end to end service with the leading experts in the field – Nellakir.

For regular maintenance pre and post game or event, for annual maintenance including resurfacing and relining, call Nellakir on 03 9467 6126.

Schedule a free consultation and ensure your facility presents its Timber Sports Flooring in premium condition.

Meanwhile, here is a full report on the Raptors big win, the last game of the series and that title.

Toronto Raptors Win the NBA Championship

With a victory in Game 6, the Raptors dethrone the league’s reigning dynasty and claim the first title in franchise history

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OAKLAND, Calif.—Before the first NBA team outside the U.S. ever played a game, the new franchise in Toronto needed a name. The owners asked the entire nation of Canada for ideas. Some were good. Some were bad. Some were terrible. And one was the Raptors. It was 1994. “Jurassic Park” was big. That was reason enough for this basketball team to be named after dinosaurs.

Now the Toronto Raptors can be called something else: NBA champions.

The Raptors beat the Golden State Warriors, 114-110, in Game 6 of the Finals on Thursday to win the series, 4-2, with a commanding performance on the road in Oracle Arena’s last game to dethrone the league’s reigning dynasty and win the Raptors’ first title.

To hear “Toronto Raptors” and “NBA champions” in the same breath would’ve sounded like a hallucination to most fans for most of the franchise’s existence. This is the same team that once played in purple dinosaur uniforms. They couldn’t keep star players and couldn’t attract free agents. Toronto was too cold, too Canadian, too much unlike any other team in the league to compete at this level.

But now they have to declare the Larry O’Brien trophy at customs because of someone who has always been different himself.

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There is no one in the NBA like Kawhi Leonard. He is quieter than every other player. He is also better. And he just put together one of the greatest playoff runs in the history of the league.

But it wasn’t just him in a Game 6 that was both a classic and a fittingly insane send-off to this arena. Kyle Lowry scored 26 points. Pascal Siakam, who was studying to be a Catholic priest in Cameroon less than a decade ago, also scored 26 points. Fred VanVleet, an undrafted guard who is very generously listed at 6 feet tall, had 22 points and hit some of the biggest shots in the game.

Still, it was barely enough. The Warriors were the champions for a reason and they refused to go down without a fight. They didn’t have Kevin Durant, who ruptured his Achilles tendon in Game 5. Then they lost Klay Thompson, who was having a brilliant game when he went up for a dunk attempt in the third quarter and went down with a torn ACL. He tried to stay in the game anyway.

But after 47 minutes of pandemonium, there was one last minute of craziness and the Warriors had a shot that everyone in the Bay Area would’ve sold their houses for: a Stephen Curry 3-pointer for the win. “I just thought it was in,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “I always think every shot Steph takes is going in.”

This one didn’t. Curry missed. The Warriors called a timeout that they didn’t have. And the Raptors won the championship.

They are one of the strangest championship teams the NBA has ever seen. This is a team without a lottery pick but with a foundational superstar player who might be gone after just one season. It’s a team with a rookie coach who spent decades in the G League and Great Britain. It’s a team that took a long, winding road to get here and couldn’t be exactly sure where it was going.

But this is also a team that pursued a surprisingly rare strategy: the Raptors did everything in their power to win a championship this year.

Toronto’s season that ended in confetti began nearly a year ago in a hotel room in Kenya. That’s where Raptors President Masai Ujiri pulled the trigger on the trade that would change the future of his franchise.

His team was coming off the two winningest seasons in its history, but the Raptors kept crashing into a ceiling with an odd resemblance to LeBron James, and their city had become known by another name: LeBronto. Ujiri needed to make drastic changes. He’d already fired the league’s reigning coach of the year and hired Nick Nurse. Now it was time for him to get rid of the face of the franchise. By trading DeMar DeRozan for Leonard, the Raptors gambled on getting an even better player, and maybe even the best player in the world.

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It would be the most successful bet they ever made.

But first they had to make another one. Leonard was coming off a mysterious injury that sidelined him for most of last season, and nobody seemed to know what kind of player he would be when he returned. As if that weren’t enough uncertainty, Leonard was also in the final year of his contract, meaning the Raptors might not have enough time to find out.

That was plenty of incentive for them to prioritize Leonard’s health above everything. They needed to do everything in their power to make sure he peaked in the playoffs.

Under the care of Alex McKechnie, a Scottish sports scientist with a shock of white hair, the Raptors crafted a radical plan for their star player: They played him less. He only played in 60 of 82 games and didn’t play on consecutive days all season. But it worked. By pacing him in the regular season, they positioned him to be incredible in the postseason.

He was. But he also needed to be.

The Raptors were down 1-0 to the Orlando Magic in the first round and 2-1 to the 76ers the next round in front of a crowd of polite, exceedingly civil Philadelphians. They required a buzzer-beating shot from Leonard to bounce four times to win Game 7 of that series, and their reward was a matchup with the Milwaukee Bucks, who had the NBA’s best record and likely Most Valuable Player. This time they were down 2-0 before ripping off four straight wins to get to the Finals.

And then the Raptors had to play the Warriors.

NBA teams tend to live unhappily ever after once that happens. The Warriors were chasing a three-peat and their fourth title in five years. They were two more wins away from a place among the game’s all-time great dynasties.

By the time they crossed the border, though, they were no longer capable of their particular brand of basketball terror. Durant missed four games with a calf injury and then went out in Game 5—a devastating blow that cast a pall on the series and changed the complexity of the entire league.

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It slowly became clear over the course of the series that the Raptors were simply better than a team making its bid to be one of the best ever.

This was Ujiri’s vision. He urged Toronto to believe in itself at the beginning of the season. He repeated that message after the Raptors won the Eastern Conference and what felt like the great misfortune of playing the Warriors.

“We came all this way to compete, and we want to win in Toronto,” Ujiri said. “And we will win in Toronto.”

Ujiri was right about so much this season. But he was wrong about that final prediction: they won in Oakland. And now it no longer sounds absurd to say the Raptors really are the NBA champions.

Source: wsj.com

So remember, provide the sports flooring that will produce the next Steve Curry – Timber Sports Flooring by Nellakir.

Sports Flooring for Champions.

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Nellakir helps young athletes reach their goals by providing the highest quality Sprung Timber Sports Floor playing surfaces.

A clean sweep with Nellakir, but Raptors Vs Warriors will go down to the wire.

Nellakir now offer regular court cleaning for all Timber Sports Flooring. Cut down on unnecessary wear and tear on your valuable sports floor surfaces. Nellakir offer expert service and advice on all Timber Sports Flooring – including regular cleaning, whether it’s weekly, pre event, post event or to you schedule. Call now on 03 9467 6126.

Meanwhile, the Raptors have struck back. Andrew Bogut injured in the third leaving an already decimated Warriors exposed. Here is the report.

Toronto has shot the lights out to blast the Warriors off their own court and steal back the NBA Finals with a 2-1 series lead.

The Raptors had six players score more than 10 points as they kept Golden State at arms length for almost the entire contest.

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They did it comfortably in the end with a 123-109 win to leave the Warriors’ dynasty on the brink. Toronto is now just two wins away from a first NBA championship.

An off-balance Fred VanVleet three-point dagger killed off the Warriors with 1.39mins remaining as the Raptors led 118-105.

Aussie Andrew Bogut played his biggest Playoffs game since returning to the Warriors earlier this year, putting up six points, seven rebounds and three assists while also proving to be a spark in defence.
Bogut’s nice left hook from the paint in the third quarter gave him a perfect three from three from the field at the time.

The move got ESPN analyst Jeff van Gundy a little too excited, with the American commentator getting mixed up between Sydney and Melbourne for Bogut’s first season back in the NBL.

“That was a flashback to Melbourne, where he was the MVP,” van Gundy said, clearly unaware the Victorian played for the Sydney Kings this season.

Unfortunately, Bogut was forced to the locker room at the end of the third quarter after appearing to suffer an injury. He returned to the game mid-way through the final quarter — but by then the game was all but over.

The Warriors closed to within seven points in the fourth quarter, but Toronto always found the bucket needed to stomp out any hope of a Golden State fightback.

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The home side simply had no answer to the Raptors’ superior shooting. The Raptors hit 17 or 38 from down town, while the Warriors hit 12 of 36. Without Steph Curry’s extraordinary haul of 47 points, the Raptors shot just six of 22 from beyond the arc.

Kawhi Leonard led the Raptors with 30 points, but Pascal Siakam (18 points), Marc Gasol (17), Danny Green (18) and Kyle Lowry (23) all had big moments.

The Warriors are now desperately hoping stars Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant will be able to return from injuries ahead of Game 4 on Saturday (AEST).

Warriors coach Steve Kerr said before the game it would be a game-time decision about injured shooter Klay Thompson, with the major concern being the possibility of the 29-year-old guard doing more damage to the hamstring if he played with the best-of-seven final level at 1-1.

“Our training staff will let us know the risk,” Kerr said before the decision was announced.

“It’s still early in the series, so if there’s risk, then we won’t play him.”

Thompson, a five-time NBA All-Star, had never missed a playoff game in his career, a streak of 120 in a row that ended with him being benched.

The only player with a longer active streak of playoff appearances for his team is Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James at 239.

Thompson was put onto the active roster and warmed up with his teammates before being benched.

Kevin Durant, Golden State’s top playoff scorer with 34.2 points a game, was ruled out of game three on Tuesday.

The 2017 and 2018 NBA Finals Most Valuable Player has been out for nearly a month with a right calf injury, the Warriors going 6-1 without him.

Kerr said Durant has had good workouts the past two days and he hopes to put him in scrimmage situations on Thursday with an eye to game four on Friday.

“He’s got to continue to improve and not have any setbacks,” Kerr said.

“That’s the main thing.”

Source: news.com.au

For expert service and advice, always call Victoria’s leading experts in Timber Sports Flooring – Construction and Maintenance – Nellakir.

Call 03 9467 6126 or leave your details here for a prompt reply.

Nellakir – Sports Flooring for Champions.

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Nellakir helps young athletes reach their goals by providing the highest quality Sprung Timber Sports Floor playing surfaces.

Timber Sports Flooring Maintenance starts with Professional Cleaning – by Nellakir

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Genuine Sprung Timber Sports Flooring is like a fine instrument. It must be cared for properly, cleaned professionally to a prescribed program – with the right equipment.

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Nellakir are recognised as the leading experts in the construction and maintenance of Timber Sports Flooring. Now the Nellakir team are adding another very important service for Sports Stadium and Sports Facility Managers. Nellakir now provide a completely professional Cleaning Service for all Sprung Timber Sports Flooring surfaces.

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Cleaned effectively and professionally a Timber Sports Floor provides a premium surface for both professional and amateur competitions. Expert cleaning will ensure the longevity of the court and definitely reduce wear and tear on court surfaces.

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This is especially important in preparation for major events at your sports facilities and equally after the events have occurred. Expert cleaning – with the right equipment – reduces slippery floors, protects floor coatings which reduces wear and tear and ultimately provides both a superior playing surface and a court suitable for a minimum annual maintenance schedule.

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When you consider it, Nellakir construct many of the better known stadium and school sports flooring, they also provide an efficient and effective annual maintenance program – re-coating, re-lining and on cyclical requirement re-sanding and re-surfacing. Why not trust your valuable court’s cleaning regime to the experts in Timber Sports Flooring. Complete the circuit and call Nellakir for:

  • General Floor Cleaning
  • Event Floor Cleaning (pre + post)
  • Pre-maintenance Floor Cleaning

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Call the experts, be confident your sports facility’s timber flooring competition courts are cleaned and maintained at the highest level ensuring always the provision of a premium playing surface. Whether it’s the Harlem Globetrotters, the Boomers or your local Netball juniors, be confident you are providing the very best in Timber Sports Flooring for your patrons.

Call now on 03 9467 6126 or 0417 384 100 to discuss your needs, maintenance and cleaning requirements. Arrange a free on-site consultation to discuss scheduling and pricing.

Always choose Nellakir with Leading Edge Technology.

The Sports Flooring of Champions.

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Nellakir helps young athletes reach their goals by providing the highest quality Sprung Timber Sports Floor playing surfaces.

Netball and Nellakir – The Perfect Combination

Netball is increasing its public interest exponentially. The National competition has major ‘Free to Air’ coverage and the sport is proving to be the most popular women’s sport after Swimming.

Nellakir are proud to be involved with providing the very best in premium Sports Flooring for the highest levels of Netball competition throughout Victoria.

The Sports advancement in Western Australia demonstrates its meteoric rise in popularity.

From the ABC news today…

Netball fever takes hold in WA amid record sponsorship deal and increasing fan base

It is a frontier year for netball in Western Australia.

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The Fever is dealing with higher expectations after a grand final appearance last year, a permanent move to Perth Arena and a new lucrative sponsorship deal that is worth a record $5 million to WA netball over the next three years.

The sport is now in rarefied air, and it has been a progression built on years of hard work.

As the Fever won its way to a maiden grand final berth it became the main show in town — crowds were big, media attention was high and community interest in the Perth team peaked.

The grand final against Sunshine Coast last year was watched by more than 1 million people across Australia, and the club’s 16 games over the season were streamed by more than 1 million people.

The Fever also did 170 media appearances in the week leading up to the decider.

Netball top team sport for girls

Across the league, more than 6.7 million viewers tuned in to at least part of a match in 2018, with a match average of 140,000 viewers — an increase of 25.9 per cent on the year before.

With those sorts of figures, it is no wonder the Fever has just signed the biggest sponsorship deal in the history of women’s sport in WA.

The game also remains strong at grassroots level.

According to the Australian Sports Commission, netball remained the number one team sport for girls last year despite Australian football, cricket, soccer and rugby all making concerted efforts to increase the number of females playing their respective sports.

Swimming was still the overall favourite, accounting for 33.9 per cent of girls aged 0-14, with netball at 13.3 per cent.

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Dancing, gymnastics, football, basketball, dance sports, athletics, tennis and hockey rounded out the top 10.

A total of 1.2 million people play netball in Australia, and 230,000 of those are in WA.

Nielsen Sports said more than one in five Australians are fans or consumers of netball — and that is something which makes it even more appealing for broadcasters, according to media analyst Steve Allan.

“One of the things about netball is it has a very attractive demographic from a telecaster’s point of view,” he said.

“It is nearly all 14 to 34[-year-old] females. That is a very attractive group.”

‘The sport has moved to new heights’

Netball Australia has formed an independent commission ahead of this year’s Super Netball season, following the framework set out by leagues such as the AFL and NRL, with the aim of being the top sporting league for women globally.

Sport Australia CEO Kate Palmer said it was another big step in the right direction.

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“I think this is the next iteration of the sport in this country, and certainly under the [Netball Australia] leadership of [CEO] Marne Fechner and [chair] Paolina Hunt, the sport has moved to new heights,” she said.

“We have seen this in other sports — once you move to an independent commission, you get different levels of expertise in this space.”

In an increasingly crowded sporting market, netball is stronger than it has ever been.

Source: abc.net.au

To ensure your Timber Sports Flooring is always presented in premium playing condition, contact Nellakir on 03 9467 6126 and arrange a free consultation on all your maintenance requirements. Nellakir offer a sensible annual maintenance package. The Nellakir team can competently provide re-surfacing, re-lining and where required re-sanding. Call now or leave your details here for a prompt reply

Nellakir – The Sports Flooring for Champions