Boeheim’s Army headlines The Basketball Tournament In Brooklyn
The Basketball Tournament made its return to New York as Round 1 in the Northeast Region took place at LIU-Brooklyn.
This weekend saw the return of The Basketball Tournament to the tri-state area. In its fifth year, the TBT is 72-team, single-elimination tournament. In this winner-takes-all format, the winning team takes home $2 million while there is no second place. This type of competition creates exciting matchups as everyone is gunning for the money and bragging rights.
Saturday featured six games on the campus of LIU-Brooklyn with twelve teams in action looking to advance. Here are three takeaways from Saturday’s matchups, including a new wrinkle to end extended, drawn-out endings to games.
Syracuse Draws Everywhere
Fans of the Orange follows Syracuse everywhere, and that applied to The Basketball Tournament. Boeheim’s Army, a collection of former Orange players, are the number one seed as they went into action on Saturday evening. That meant a pro-Syracuse crowd in the highest attended game of the day.
While the team had the crowd behind them, they played down to their opponents, the South Jamaica Kings. Boeheim’s Army held a small halftime lead but eventually pulled away in the fourth quarter behind hot shooting. The crowd helped the team down the stretch, and a win like this may help them in later games down the line. With that said, South Jamaica came ready to play and should not feel sorry about their performance.
Finding The Hot Hand
In many of the games at LIU-Brooklyn, many of the winning teams rode the hot shooting of someone. Whether it was Armored Athlete’s Terrico White (6-for-11 from three-point range) or Frantz Massenat (6-for-13 from three) for the Talladega Knights, each team continually fed their shooters.
In a single-elimination tournament like this, it is imperative that teams find something that works in each game. If someone is shooting well, their team must do everything in their power to get the ball to them. The teams in Round 1 did an excellent job of that as they moved on to Sunday’s action.
The Elam Ending
A new wrinkle to the 2018 TBT is the inclusion of The Elam Ending, which is a new way to end games. At the first dead ball of the under the four-minute mark of the fourth quarter, the team that is leading has seven points added to their total. That number becomes the target score and whichever team hits that number, they win the game.
While this idea eliminates the torture that is the final minutes of a basketball game, I was skeptical of how it would work in practice. To my surprise, it works extremely well and ends games with a flurry and not with a marathon pace. Once the transition happens, the winning team begin the process of finishing the game. For the losing side, their defense is turned up while better shots are taken. There were instances this weekend where the losing team came back to hit the target score.
While the NBA would never switch to this concept, it is something for the G-League and the NCAA to look at. The Elam Ending makes the end of games exciting and easier to watch. It is much better than the typical 20 minute NBA ending with 90 seconds on the clock.
Team Arkansas 85, Tim Thomas Playaz 62
Talladega Knights 80, HBC Sicklerville 60
Armored Athlete 85, DC On Point 69
Gael Nation 100, Sideline Cancer 88
Boeheim’s Army 90, South Jamaica Kings 72
Team Fancy 85, Saints Alive 68