Grand final most valuable player Olivia Epoupa is still on the Canberra Capitals' recruitment radar despite uncertainty about whether the WNBL will allow import players next season.
French guard Epoupa was a revelation this year, providing the X-factor to help lift the Capitals to back to back championships and being named the best player of the grand final series.
Her hopes of playing in the United States have been stalled by travel restrictions, but she has been in contact with Canberra coach Paul Goriss about the potential of having another crack in the capital.
The WNBL has announced its plans for the 2020-21 season, delaying the start by a month because of coronavirus concerns and preparing to proceed without crowds until Christmas.
But the free agency signing period is yet to be finalised, with clubs waiting for WNBL commission instruction before starting their recruitment and retention processes.
Epoupa is at the top of Canberra's wishlist, while Goriss is also close to re-signing Kelsey Griffin, Marianna Tolo, Maddison Rocci and Keely Froling.
"I've been in constant contact with Olivia and her agent. I know Olivia definitely wants to come back here, but it's going to be a process thing and waiting on free agency and the WNBL to make a decision on imports," Goriss said.
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The new WNBL will start on the weekend of November 20-22, with the grand final series to finish at the end of March.
"It's great news. It's now about waiting on free agency and then have a clearer picture of when we can start pre-season," Goriss said.
"[Putting a team together] has been in the back of the mind since this pandemic hit, thinking about what our team's going to look like and how we can recruit in free agency.
"Now it makes the picture a little bit clearer around recruiting and gives clarity to the players, but also waiting to see what other seasons will continue. My priority is always tying away the Australian [players] first and then getting the rest."
Nine-time champions the Capitals will be aiming for a title three-peat for the first time in the club's history when the next season does begin, but they might start without people in the stands.
That will affect when the Capitals unfurl their latest championship banner and whether the Capitals will play home games at the AIS Arena, National Convention Centre or a cheaper venue at Belconnen or Tuggeranong.
The decision about where the Capitals will play if crowds are unable will largely depend on what sort of broadcast deal the WNBL can secure.
Belconnen and Tuggeranong are more intimate venues, but the lighting at the Convention Centre and the AIS is far superior.
"There are some hard bits of information that we can't change," said Capitals general manager Lucille Bailie.
"If we can only get 50 or 100 or a limited number of people into a stadium, how do can be creative and take that bit of the product and offer it in a different way?
"Do we have house parties? Do we get people at Bentspoke watching the broadcast? No we know when the season starts, we can start those discussions. The health advice might change, so we just have to have scenarios in place."