NBL takes Illawarra Hawks license back, will address ownership decision

It looks like LaMelo Ball might not be the face of the Illawarra Hawks' new ownership group - yet.

On Friday evening, the league confirmed that the team is in voluntary administration. The NBL will be directly engaged in future discussions around new ownership for the Hawks.

The NBL has taken back the licence for the Illawarra Hawks after the club was placed into voluntary administration.

Hungry Jack’s NBL Owner and Executive Chairman Larry Kestelman said: “We thank Simon and Wendy Stratford for everything they have done during their time at the club to advance the interests of the Hawks and the Illawarra region and we wish them all the very best during these unprecedented and challenging times.

“We will spend the coming weeks establishing a plan and a process to find the next owners of the club. Illawarra is one of the NBL’s foundation clubs and we are committed to ensuring its long term viability and success in the League.

“We are in discussions with the Australian Basketball Players’ Association and will address the issue of any outstanding player entitlements from the 2019-20 season, and make sure the club is in a strong position and ready to participate in the 2020/21 Hungry Jack's NBL season.”

According to the Illawarra Mercury, local business man Tory Lavalle, whose company Multi Civil and Rail has been a sponsor of the team, was in discussions with the league to take over ownership from Simon Stratford. Lavalle had also confirmed that a miscommunication in the deal's progress resulted in a premature announcement on ownership via ESPN.