The Wollongong Hawks will be close to full strength for Friday night's highly anticipated season opener against arch rivals Sydney at WIN Entertainment Centre.
Frontcourt linchpin Larry Davidson has made a strong recovery from a minor knee complaint that kept him out of training last week, while classy off-season recruit Lance Hurdle has overcome a hamstring strain.
Forward Tim Coenraad is still battling plantar fasciitis but is expected to play, leaving guard Tyson Demos as the only absentee.
Demos had minor knee surgery last month and is aiming for a return in round two against Cairns.
Davidson was troubled by chronic knee injuries early in his career, but was always confident his latest setback was only temporary.
"I warmed up at training yesterday and did some of the early drills and it felt great," Wollongong's starting centre said. "Today it feels good and it hasn't pulled up sore or swollen. Tomorrow I'll do some more stuff at training and then if it feels good after that and feels good on Tuesday, I'll load it up again on Wednesday. If there's no setbacks with it, then it should be good for Friday."
Davidson hyper-extended his knee in the first game of the recent NBL pre-season tournament at Dandenong.
"A guy fell backwards right on my knee and it went back the wrong way," he said. "I got an MRI and it showed some bone bruising, but it's fine. There was a little swelling midway through last week and it was a little stiff and sore, but that seems to have gone away. I've been gradually building up, doing some gym work on it and a lot of stuff in the pool. I'm pretty used to having to deal with a bit of pain or some restriction, just with the past injuries I've had on it.
"When I was doing stuff yesterday I didn't have to think about it. But even if there is a little bit of pain it's nothing new to me."
Hurdle has been impressive in the pre-season and is burning to get his first official game under the belt.
"Lance trained yesterday and looked good. He's pretty keen to get out there on Friday," Davidson said.
"The pre-season tournament was good. Even though we had some injuries it was a good challenge for us and we played pretty well for the most part."
Despite being ranked as championship outsiders in most betting markets, the Hawks have already shown they are capable of claiming a top-four spot.
With the football seasons finished, club officials are hoping for a big turnout for the round one home clash with the Kings. Tickets are on sale through Ticketek.