The Canberra Capitals are finals in the WNBL, but not everyone is happy, including Sydney Flames coach and Boomers legend Shane Heal. Find out why.
Heal’s comments come as the Capitals have qualified for the final after using private Flames training vision to gain an unfair advantage in a win in the opening round.
An independent panel did not associate Canberra competition points to share the confidential scout training video.
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Judge Simon Cozier and Capital’s coach Paul Goriss were both suspended for engaging in banned behavior after a Basketball Australia investigation found the pair were abusing inside information and engaging in behavior that would undermine public confidence in the integrity of basketball.
Despite the guilty verdict, an independent panel found that Goriss or his team did not gain any real advantage when the Capitals beat the Flames by three points in the opening round of the WNBL season.
Heal strongly disagreed with the panel’s findings at the time, revealing that Canberra received a private video of actual warm-up games.
He believed this clearly gave Canberra an unfair advantage in beating the Flames in the opening round and wanted to see the Capital’s docket points for “cheating”.
Canberra pushed the scandal aside to become number three and will play against Perth in the second semi-final series starting on Thursday.
Heal can not bring himself to cheer on Canberra in the final due to the cheating scandal that cost his team.
“Canberra are in there and I hope they do not win because they cheated on us at the start of the year,” Heal said on the Basketball Show.
“I hope they lose, but I do not think they think they have cheated. Even when their coach was suspended, he was on full pay.
“I also do not think he (Goriss) apologized, so they can not see that they did much wrong.”
Goriss has secured a job in the WNBA from next season, despite being found guilty of cheating by Basketball Australia, a FIBA body, for obtaining private Flames training recordings.
Heal did not expect the Capitals coach to win a role in America because of the cheating revelations.
“I was surprised he signed, ‘but good for him,'” he said.
“I would be interested to see how Canberra do in the final because they have not played so well in the last month.
“They certainly will not be the team I have to barrack for in the final.”
The WNBL finals start on Thursday when the Melbourne Boomers host Adelaide Lightning and Perth Lynx take on the Canberra Capitals.
Both semifinal series are the best of three.