Friendship will be put on hold when Wollongong import "Lethal" Lance Hurdle takes on an old sparring partner tonight at WIN Entertainment Centre.
Hurdle played three seasons in the NBA's Development League before being recruited by the Hawks in August.
One of his opponents back home was a talented forward named Shane Edwards, who also headed to Australia after signing with the Cairns Taipans.
It remains to be seen if they match-up on each other tonight at any stage, but Hurdle isn't the type of player to engage in trash-talk with rivals and believes Edwards looms as a major threat to the Hawks.
"I know him pretty well. He's a very good player and a real good dude," Hurdle said.
"I played against him in the D-League and knowing how he plays and how [Taipans playmaker] Jamar Wilson plays ... they're very well coached and we're not looking past them at all.
"They're a real dangerous team. It's gonna be a dogfight but, if we stick to our principles, I'm sure we'll be good."
The Hawks were cruising on top with five straight wins before last week's 14-point road loss to Sydney.
Hurdle said confidence and morale remained high.
"Everything's still the same, our approach is the same," the guard said.
"We didn't do anything different in practice that we haven't been doing. We just refocused and we're looking forward to playing Cairns.
"We watched film and talked about some of the mistakes we made.
"We just have to keep our heads and continue to focus on the long-term goal. We're still in a great position at 5-1, so we're just focused on doing our best against Cairns and getting a good result."
The Hawks are a perfect 3-0 on their home court.
"We love this crowd here," Hurdle said.
"After a loss it's good to come back home and play in front of your fans. It gives you that little edge."