• Staff Report


The cash-strapped Miyazaki Shining Suns have made it known they want to fold the team or defect to the NBDL (the re-launched JBL2) next season, the Miyazaki Nichinichi Shimbun reported Saturday.

The Shining Suns, a third-year franchise with a bj-league-worst 9-35 record entering this weekend’s series against the visiting Osaka Evessa, informed league officials on Feb. 4 that they want to pull out of the pro circuit before the 2013-14 season. It is unclear if the Shining Suns will field a team next season, what with past crises for the Oita HeatDevils and Takamatsu Five Arrows, both of which announced publicly that they were on the verge of folding on multiple occasions.

In a news release on Saturday afternoon, the bj-league stated that “a club that pulls out from the next season must apply to the league by June 30 of the previous year,” as required by bj-league regulation 7-1. Therefore, in regard to pulling out of for the 2013-14 season, the deadline was June 30, 2012, and the application submitted by the Miyazaki Energy Create, Inc., was late.

When a franchise violates this article, it is to be penalized. Miyazaki Energy Create, Inc., owes the bj-league general fund ¥11.6 million, and the club’s withdrawal is still being discussed.

Whether their withdrawal will be accepted or not, the Shining Suns will continue to play the rest of its games this season.

Ex-Miyazaki standout Dominique Keller, now playing for the Gunma Crane Thunders, ripped the Shining Suns management, as chronicled in the March 1 bj-league notebook, alleging a pattern of malfeasance by the team president Shunsaku Kamada.

In a Saturday email to The Japan Times, Keller reacted to the Miyazaki news by writing, “(I) can’t say that I’m really surprised when you run an organization the way (they) do. It can only end in the direction it’s going. I’m sad for the fans, they are really nice people and were very supportive. I feel bad for the Japanese players . . . a few of them can really play.”

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