Past Champions

1996 NBL Champions: Auckland Stars

The 1996 season of the NBL reverted back to a 12 team league with the Waitakere Rangers dropping down into the Conference Basketball League (CBL). The Auckland Stars claimed back-to-back titles and their fourth overall as they came back to down the Nelson Giants in the Best of Three Finals Series after dropping the first match.


12 teams contested the 1996 season (final standings): Auckland Stars, Nelson Giants, North Harbour Vikings, Hawke’s Bay Hawks, Wellington Saints, Hutt Valley Lakers, Otago Nuggets, Canterbury Rams, Palmerston North Jets, Taranaki Bears, Northland Suns and Waikato Warriors.

Grand Final (Best Of Three Series):

  • Game One: Nelson Giants (110) defeated Auckland Stars (95) (Referees: Stan Battock & Keith Milligan)
  • Game Two: Auckland Stars (109) defeated Nelson Giants (98) (Referees: Ken Coulson & John Burton)
  • Game Three: Auckland Stars (94) defeated Nelson Giants (90) (Referees: John Burton & Ken Coulson)

Season Award Winners:

  • Regular Season Winners: Auckland Stars (19-3)
  • NZ Most Valuable Player: Phill Jones (Nelson Giants)
  • Most Outstanding Guard (Keith Carr Trophy): Tony Bennett (North Harbour Vikings)
  • Most Outstanding NZ Guard (John Macdonald Trophy): Phill Jones (Nelson Giants)
  • Most Outstanding Forward (Commissioners Cup): Ed Book (Palmerston North Jets)
  • Most Outstanding NZ Forward/Centre (Stan Hill Trophy): Pero Cameron (Auckland Stars)
  • Scoring Champion (Alan Bland Memorial Trophy): Ed Book (33.27) (Palmerston North Jets)
  • Rebounding Champion (Garry Pettis Memorial Trophy): Jeff Daniels (13.55) (North Harbour Vikings)
  • Assist Champion (Dave Taylor Trophy): Scott Stewart (Canterbury Rams)
  • Best Team Free Throws¬†(Nial Forsyth Trophy): Wellington Saints
  • Rookie of the Year: Paora Winitana (North Harbour Vikings)
  • Coach of the Year: Nenad Vucinic (Nelson Giants)

All-Star Five:

  • G: Tony Bennett (North Harbour Vikings)
  • G: Phill Jones (Nelson Giants)
  • F: Darryl Johnson (Hutt Valley Lakers)
  • F: Pero Cameron (Auckland Stars)
  • C: Ed Book (Palmerston North Jets)



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