While the Gophers upcoming season schedule has been set, it’s not too early to look ahead to the 2018-19 season. Minnesota men’s basketball, along with Texas A&M, will headline the eight-team field that will take part in the inaugural Vancouver Showcase from November 18-20 next season.
The men’s tournament will be played back-to-back under the iconic sails of the Vancouver Convention Centre. The Convention Centre’s exhibition space in its East building will be transformed into a 3,000-plus seat venue, complete with portable bleachers, portable floor, goals (baskets), and video boards to provide a first-class fan experience at every game.
Additional teams in both the men’s and women’s fields will be announced in the next few weeks. Fans are encouraged to visit www.vanshowcase.com for the latest news and to register for ticket information.
U.S.-based bd Global, the event promoter, currently manages numerous college basketball events in markets such as Las Vegas, Phoenix, Southwest Florida and Nassau, Bahamas. The firm also has a golf division that manages professional golf tournaments and will launch an NCAA hockey tournament in Las Vegas in January. The idea for the Vancouver event came from two locals – David Munro, a former Vancouver Grizzlies official, and Howard Kelsey, who has been involved with Canadian basketball at nearly every level for the past four decades since he played for Team Canada. Both will serve as co-tournament directors.
“We fully support bd Global’s decision to launch this exciting event in 2018,” said Kelsey, who is the co-founder of the CDN National Teams Alumni Association. “We have a duty to the local partners that are supporting this endeavor and all the basketball fans in British Columbia to bring a big-time, first-class event to Vancouver. I am excited about the teams that will headline the event and have no doubt that this will be huge for our community.”
"Teams such as Minnesota and Texas A&M are not only great programs but some of the most identifiable brands in sports,” added Munro, who currently works at the Sports Institute. “Howard and I set out to bring a level of basketball back to Vancouver not seen since the Grizzlies left town. Most will agree that this event will fill a tremendous void in our community in this sport.”
More information about the Vancouver Showcase will be shared when it becomes available.
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