The Hawks have decided their newly signed Los Angeles import forward will fulfil his 14-day self-isolation in Napier after failing to pave a way for him to book his flight to the United States.
"I couldn't get any definitive answers [from government officials] so he's in a situation where he's quite happy to be where he is now," says the Taylor Corporation-sponsored franchise team general manager Amy Price after the Covid-19 virus situation prompted a postponement of the National Basketball League (NBL) tip-off early next month.
The Hawks had made a concerted effort on Friday to try to find a way via the road to enable him to jet off from an international port but that hadn't transpired. The import's self-isolation period will end on Tuesday next week.
• Basketball: Everard Bartlett to roost with Hawke's Bay Hawks again in NBL campaign
• Basketball: Steven Adams, Oklahoma City Thunder team and staff cleared of coronavirus
• People's Choice Award finalist: Kaitaia basketball coach Kape Murray
• Basketball: Hawks' Aussie import off home; LA and Alabama pair in limbo
He had arrived in Napier before the self-isolation protocol kicked in a fortnight ago and was training under the tutelage of new coach Daniel Nelson, of Dublin, Ireland.
Another US import forward had been asked not to board his flight from Alabama on Saturday and an Australian import guard had departed for Melbourne as well.
Price says the LA player is keen to return home as soon as that opportunity arises after he is cleared.
"I think in the way the world is at the moment he's probably champing at the bit to get home, really," she says after a brief conversation with him via a phone call. He is in touch with his partner and a child in LA.
Price says the franchise has dealt with players and agents with a view to them returning should the status of the competition changes. The NBL has mooted a potentially modified competition in May or June.
The calibre of their players for the season is exciting so the Hawks intend to keep that line of communication open.
She says the coach will remain in Napier for now because part of his portfolio was to develop basketball in the province.
"He's of the intention that he still wants to do that so he'll remain here to have a look at the development of the wider, extended squad although at the moment we have suspended all training and contact so we'll just have to wait and see what happens there."
Tall Black Jarrod Kenny remains keen to come down from Auckland when he finishes his self-isolation time.