2011 Hall of Fame Inductee Willie Burton
Willie Burton played his youth Basketball in USA for Tennessee University and was drafted to the NBA Denver Nuggets in NBA in 1984 but did not make the final team.
He came to Hawkes Bay to play in the Hawks NBL team as an import in 1986. Over the next 20 years he played 10 seasons for the Hawks including being a member of the NBL Championship 2006 team. He was selected in the NBL ALL Star 5 team 8 times and was leading rebounder of the year on 6 occasions. He also won the Outstanding forward of the year in 1986 and the assists trophy in 1999.
Willie naturalised and was a member of the 2001 Tall Blacks who defeated Australia for the first time in a World Cup qualifying tournament.
He has coached the Hawkes Bay under 15, 17 and 19 mens teams to qualify for the National Tournament for 5 years.