SBD/March 7, 2012/Facilities

NCAA Considering N.Y. Area Venues To Host '13 Tourney East Regional

Renovations throwing wrench into efforts to host East Regional at MSG next year
While the "consensus is that it will come down to Madison Square Garden, Newark's Prudential Center and the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn, the NCAA hasn't made a decision yet" on the location of next year's East Regional of the NCAA men's basketball tournament, according to Brendan Prunty of the Newark STAR-LEDGER.  NCAA Interim Exec VP/Championships & Alliances Greg Shaheen said, "I would hope by the Final Four, we'd figure that out." It has been "no secret that since the NCAA took over the operations of the NIT in 2005, that there has been a mutual interest in hosting an East Regional for the NCAA Tournament at the Garden." But "complicating that interest has been the major renovation project that the Garden is currently undergoing." With that "wrench thrown in the mix, Newark's name has once again been thrown into the pot." Shaheen said, "One of the things is we've wanted to give the Garden an opportunity to finish their renovations." The Prudential Center was a "first-time host last year, earning rave reviews from not only Shaheen, but the teams and administrators who attended the event." With the NCAA "holding back on awarding a site, Brooklyn's new Barclays Center has also entered into the race." While Shaheen "acknowledged that the scheduled new home of the Nets is in the mix, he also added that the Carrier Dome in Syracuse is another potential site." Even though Izod Center has been an 11-time host site of the East Regional, the building "seems to have fallen out of the NCAAs spotlight" (Newark STAR-LEDGER, 3/7).

GLOBAL DESTINATION: In N.Y., Lenn Robbins wrote the Barclays Center "isn’t trying to kid anyone -- the Garden is the Garden -- but that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for another elite hoops address." Nets and Barclays Center CEO Brett Yormark said, "Our vision is for the Barclays Center to become a local, national and international destination. We’re going to have the best teams in the nation here, and we’re going to give local colleges and high schools a chance to experience playing on the same court that the Nets and the greatest players in the NBA." Yormark added, "I want people years from now to be able to say that they went to an event they never dreamed they would be able to go to because it was in Brooklyn and it was priced right" (N.Y. POST, 3/3).
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