The Canterbury Rams are a New Zealand basketball team based in Christchurch. The Rams compete in the National Basketball League (NBL) and play their home games at Cowles Stadium. For sponsorship reasons, they are known as The Wheeler Motor Canterbury Rams.

Team history

The Canterbury Rams were a foundation member of the National Basketball League (NBL) in 1982. Between 1986 and 1994, the Rams made the NBL final seven times, winning championships in 1986, 1989, 1990 and 1992. Import players Kenny Perkins, Clyde Huntley, Eddie Anderson and Angelo Hill were central to the success of the Rams, as was the outstanding New Zealand core of John "Dutchie" Rademakers, Gilbert Gordon, Andy Bennett, Graham Timms, John Hill, Ian Webb, Glen Denham and Ralph Lattimore. The architects of this success were coaches Garry Pettis, who led the team from 1986 to 1988, and Keith Mair, who took over in 1989. In 1999, the Rams made their eighth NBL final under coach Bert Knops, where they lost 79–72 to the Auckland Rebels. In 2000, Dr John Watson took over the Rams organisation from the cash-strapped Canterbury Basketball Association (CBA). His takeover of the team created some deep divisions within the basketball community. In 2006, the CBA signed a three-year management contract with Watson. In December 2008, after the CBA advised Watson that they would not be completing the third year of the contract, the Rams withdrew from the NBL, with the Christchurch Cougars taking their place in the 2009 NBL season. The Cougars lasted just two seasons after withdrawing on the eve of the 2011 season due to the Christchurch earthquake. In November 2013, the Canterbury Rams were granted re-entry into NBL under the leadership of Christchurch businessman Andrew Harrison, making their return during the 2014 NBL season. In 2016, the Rams were regular season winners for the first time since 1993 behind the likes of McKenzie Moore and Marcel Jones. They made their first playoff appearance since 2002, and as the first seed, they were aiming for their first NBL final since 1999. However, they went on to lose 104–85 to the Super City Rangers in the semi-finals despite a 35-point effort from Moore.

Honour roll


Current roster

Notable past players

* Eddie Anderson * / Clifton Bush * Glen Dandridge * Glen Denham * / Richie Edwards * Mickell Gladness * Angelo Hill * Clyde Huntley * / Marcel Jones * Jeremy Kendle * Jeremy Kench * / Terrence Lewis * Damian Matacz * McKenzie Moore * Kenny Perkins * John Rademakers * Matthew Rogers * Ethan Rusbatch * Jermaine Taylor * Reuben Te Rangi * Dennis Trammell * / Arthur Trousdell * Chris Tupu * Carlo Varicchio * Marques Whippy * John Whorton * Robert Wilson


Head coaches

* Murray McKay (1981–1983) * Darrell Todd (1984–1985) * Garry Pettis (1986–1988) * Keith Mair (1989–1995) * Bert Knops (1996–1999) * Matt Ruscoe (2000–2001) * John Watson (2002–2004) * Pete McAllister (2004–2005) * Chris Sparks (2006–2007) * Bert Knops (2008) * Dave Harrison (2014) * Mark Dickel (2015–2018) * Mick Downer (2019–present)

Assistant coaches

* Darrell Todd (1981–1983) * Garry Pettis (1984–1985) * Bert Knops (1986–1995) * Phil Burns (1996–1999) * John Watson (2000–2001) * Darren Gravly (2000–2001) * Dave Harrison (2000–2001) * Pete McAllister (2002–2004; 2014) * Dene Robinson (2002–2005) * Clinton Olsen (2005) * Terry Brunel (2006–2008; 2019–present) * Kenny Perkins (2007) * Tim Bennetts (2014)Canterbury Rams looking to build on comeback
/ref> * Caleb Harrison (2015) * Piet Van Hasselt (2015–present) * Ben Sheat (2016–2018) Source
Canterbury Rams Facebook page


External links

Official team website
Andrew Harrison: the unassuming man behind the Canterbury Rams' NBL success
{{National Basketball League (New Zealand) Category:Basketball teams in New Zealand Category:National Basketball League (New Zealand) teams Category:Sport in Christchurch Category:Basketball teams established in 1981 Category:1981 establishments in New Zealand