Finding quality basketball imports at this time of the year in New Zealand is as unusual as finding chorus cicadas taking a vow of silence in the evenings.
But when franchise teams secure the right type of high rollers from overseas leagues then you can bet your last dollar the chosen ones are going to create a racket that will be up there with the clicking-wing noise chorus cicadas tend to make during their mating ritual.
Just ask the Nelson Giants after Taylor Corporation Hawks imports EJ Singler, Daniel Kickert and Brandon Bowman hit a deafening crescendo to help claim a 103-83 victory in round six of the National Basketball League at Trafalgar Centre tonight.
It's fair to say the sound of shrill will be echoing in the Giants' brain akin to that of cicadas whose chorus is often likened to the decibels of a chainsaw or motorcycle.
American small forward Singler hit the highest note with 27 points, Australian centre Kickert chimed in with 23 points but was one shy of a double-double with nine rebounds while American power forward Bowman got to 20 points and was two adrift of a double-double in just his second appearance for the Hawks.
Captain and point guard Jarrod Kenny was the ideal conductor with 10 points and a dozen assists with fellow Kiwi players Dion Prewster adding 11 points and Ethan Rusbatch nine as they rounded up players who got around 30 minutes on the floor.
All that, of course, was music to the ears of Hawks coach Zico Coronel and his assistants, Morgan Maskell and Rob Hartley. The symphony in that orchestra came in the melodious tune of 50 per cent shooting from outside the arc, 62 per cent from the two-point zone and 55 per cent as field goals.
Coronel said they knew what to expect from the homegrown talent as well as Kickert who plied his trade in the Australian NBL. The former Boomer dropped five from as many three-pointers tonight.
"With the other two you do your homework and with Brandon, he was one of the best imports in the country but that was five years ago," he said, emphasising it wasn't a question of whether Bowman was good but whether he had lost his impetus at 34.
However, Coronel said it was evident the big man, coming here from Israel, was the ultimate professional who looked after his body and had shown tonight on the court he still had the discipline and fortitude to do the job.
Singler's title-winning performances with the Raptors 905, an affiliate of the Toronto Raptors, in 2017 in the D League (now known as the G League) was a testimony of his pedigree.
"He started on that team and there were some amazing players coming off the bench so all those little things he did made them rely on him as one of those key players to play heavy minutes and spoke volumes on how much a very good coaching staff trusted him," he said of Singler who scored six from downtown.
Coronel said the 28-year-old from Medford, Oregon, stood out so it was nice to have the entire crew function tonight although interim imports Angus Brandt, of Australia, and Shaquille Thomas had struck a chord along the way.
"It's a great group of guys who've spent an amazing time together with some laughter and fun but also play some basketball so it's looking positive."
He revealed they had built habits with suitable players although basketball offered a thousand myriad ways to achieve the desired results but because one couldn't pick all the avenues it was imperative to trust one's instincts to find that collective cohesiveness.
"We now have a group of players that are really suited to the way we want to play so, you know, it's tough opposition for people."
Coronel said Nelson had made it difficult for them early and had success with a first-quarter returns of 24-17 but it was always hard to hold back a tidal wave because at some point it would become overwhelming. The visitors won the remaining three quarters - 25-17, 25-20 and a don't-argue 36-22, respectively.
The team percentages, he said, endorsed the Hawks' shooting prowess because it was down to hard work and self-belief.
"We were incredibly cold to start the game when Nelson got to a 16-2 lead but I wasn't worried because we were taking good shots and it was just a matter of, at some point, the calibre of those shots going in."
He felt that made the Hawks a dangerous proposition for teams when they could go on a blitz of multiples of threes although they were equally lucrative from the free-throw line at 85 per cent.
"When you create chances they'll come so that's the type of game we want to play with everyone."
The nature of the beast, Coronel said, was different players finding love from the rims so Rusbatch and Co would find that magic another day.
As accomplished individuals, he said their collective drive was to help the Bay franchise claim their second NBL crown rather.
The 5-2 Hawks now play the comeback kids, the Manawatu Jets, in a 3pm tip off in Palmerston North on Sunday.
Coronel said their form, where they upset the Southland Sharks, would make the hosts a great challenge.
"They haven't had any other games this week so while we've been preparing for Nelson they've been preparing for us," he said. "It'll be an advantage to them but we'll be ready."
For the Giants, Jordair Jett ended with 20 points, Dan Grida 18 and Tyrell Harrison added 12. However, the Hawks' defensive chorus drowned out Rhys Vague to just nine points.
The Giants, on a three-loss stretch, face a long haul to play the Southern Huskies in Tasmania on Sunday.