With 112 games of the Sal's NBL on the menu during the 2020 season it is difficult to pick five games that standout, but the handful highlighted below appear to be battles you simply cannot afford to miss.
Check out the full Sal's NBL Men 2020 schedule - click HERE.
Check out the full Sal's NBL Women 2020 schedule - click HERE.
Hawks vs Saints / Sal's NBL Men / R1, Thursday April 9 @ 7:30pm
It's the perfect showdown to start season 2020. Last season's championship decider had everyone in the stadium, along with a huge television audience, on the edge of their seat and now they clash first-up. Some great twists to this match-up, none bigger than coach Zico Coronel departing the Taylor Hawke's Bay Hawks after last year's final to join the Wellington Saints. Will the master tactician taste a victory this time around? Plenty of familiar faces will be on show, including Kenny and Rusbatch for the Hawks, while Ngatai and Te Rangi will again be there for the Saints. Strap yourself in, this is the perfect way to start the season, there will be plenty on the line come April 9!
Bulls vs Sharks / Sal's NBL Men / R1, Friday April 10 @ 7pm
Our second big game comes just 24 hours after the first one, but this time all eyes will be on the new kids on the block - the Franklin Bulls. First up for the League's newest franchise will be a visit from the SIT Zero Fees Southland Sharks, a task not to be taken lightly. Both teams have already been active on building strong rosters, and both will be showcasing new coaches to the competition in Liam Simmons and Rob Beverage. The clash will forever be a part of history so expect a sell-out and a raucous Bulls crowd making sure the Sharks are fully aware they are in enemy territory. Can the Bulls claim a win in their first ever Sal's NBL game?
Dream vs Breeze / Sal's NBL Women / R1, Wednesday April 29 @ 7:30pm
The opening night of the women's competition couldn't be any bigger or better with Sky Sport broadcasting all the action from a replay of last season's cliffhanger championship decider between the Dream and Breeze. Both teams are set to have current Tall Ferns, along with many of the nation's rising stars residing in the Auckland region. Though it's the opening game of the season, look for some up-tempo action as the women's competition enters a new era as a part of the Sal's NBL. If you love your basketball, you won't want to miss this one. Another thrilling finish between the Dream and Breeze would be the perfect start to season 2020!
Sharks vs Saints / Sal's NBL Men / R7, Friday May 22 @ 7pm
Put simply, there is zero love lost between these two juggernauts of the competition. Easily the two most dominant teams over the last decade, the SIT Zero Fees Southland Sharks and Wellington Saints have built a gripping rivalry, and when they go to battle against each other it makes headlines more often than not. Though this will be the second game between the pair for the season, we like this one as it will undoubtedly be played in front of a capacity crowd at ILT Southland Stadium. The Sharks will be circling and they will have 3,000 southerners screaming for them. It will be an unmissable Friday night and could well be the game of the season.
Wildcats vs Gold Rush / Sal's NBL Women / R7, Sunday June 21 @ 2pm followed by Rams vs Sharks / Sal's NBL Men / R10, Sunday June 21 @ 4pm
We're being a bit cheeky here and fitting two games into one. Sunday June 21 will see the only double-header of the Sal's NBL season being played at Cowles Stadium in Christchurch. The Alloyfold Canterbury Wildcats host arch rivals Otago Gold Rush in the opening game, which will be followed by the Wheeler Motor Company Canterbury Rams up against the SIT Zero Fees Southland Sharks. Both games will feature plenty of big names and will surely attract a capacity crowd of Christchurch's basketball fraternity. And there could be plenty to play for - it will be the final regular season round for the women, while both the Rams and Sharks are expected to be big contenders in 2020 in the men's competition and this clash could come with plenty of advantages for the winner.