NBA championship-winner Matthew Dellavedova wowed them in Victoria’s south-west on Sunday.
Dellavedova, 26, spent one-on-one time with Warrnambool Seahawks’ under 12 basketball team following its win in a ‘Team Up With Delly’ competition run by his apparel sponsor Peak.
Each player received a signed Dellavedova Australian Boomers’ jersey and had their photo taken with the Olympian.
He then took ran a Q&A session and clinics with hundreds of aspiring south-west players at the Arc.
It was not his first visit to Warrnambool.
“My sister had a jamboree here once so I helped out,” Dellavedova said.
“I think I was the demonstrator when I was probably 14 at the coaches’ clinics and we (my family) used to come down here on the summer holidays.”
Seahawks players Finn O’Sullivan and Nicholas Unwin said the visit was “a dream come true”.
“We did this Delly contest and we took a lot of photos around Warrnambool and Koroit,” Finn said.
The pair said they asked Dellavedova “how he felt meeting LeBron and Kyrie (Irving)”, about his first minutes in the NBA and who his basketball idol was.
Finn said his young Seahawks team had enjoyed a successful representative season.
“We were close in the Bendigo championship,” he said.
“We just got knocked off against Sale but we still fought out hard and won the division two final.”
Dellavedova, who played alongside Lebron James in Cleveland Cavaliers’ historic 2016 championship before being traded to the Bucks on a four-year $38 million deal, said the depth of Australian basketball was increasing.
“I think it’s the strongest it’s probably been in a little while,” he said.
“We’ve got eight Aussies in the NBA and a lot of Aussie girls in the WNBA and the NBL and WNBL are going in the right direction.
“The Boomers and Opals are going pretty strong as well, so I think it’s a pretty exciting time for Australian basketball.”