Despite the enduring challenges of building a successful foundation from scratch, the bj-league, now in its sixth season, has made some well-calculated decisions, including the addition of franchises this season in Akita and Shimane prefectures. The Shimane Susanoo Magic, for instance, already have more than 8,000 members in their booster club, according to coach Zeljko Pavlicevic.
“We have a nice, stable team,” Pavlicevic said recently. “We have very good ambience here and very strong support.”
The well-traveled coach and former Japan national team boss compared the expansion club’s fans to spirited basketball supporters in Spanish, Italian and Greek cities.
“They are warm and cheer very good,” Pavlicevic said, adding that “the main point for the bj-league in the future is the fans. Nobody can survive without fans.”