The All Native Basketball Tournament is shooting for nothing but net, with a Prince Rupert come back scheduled for Feb. 13, 2022, start date.
One significant change to the planning will be the elimination of the November qualifying tournament. Instead, any team wanting to participate will be able to do so, however, with ongoing changing COVID-19 regulations the maximum capacity permitted has yet to be decided.
The tournament is the largest Indigenous sporting event in Canada and will welcome as many teams in the format as it has to, Peter Haugan, tournament organizer, told The Northern View on Oct. 15. The tournament may even be extended to longer than a week if there is demand for it, he said.
Financially, the 2022 tournament will start to rebuild the ANBT’s reserve funds, which were depleted during the pandemic because of ongoing operating cost commitments, such as the new floor and arena seating.
Each tournament generates about $300,000 dollars for the organization and millions more for the local community, Haugan said. Hotels, restaurants and retail outlets all benefit from the influx of thousands of players and spectators.
The most teams ever hosted in the tournament was 64, on the 50th anniversary in 2009. Within hours of the intended date being announced, 12 teams had already reached out for registration packages.
“As soon as we [publicized] it, the phones started ringing. We’ve got a whole whack of teams already,” Haugan said. “Just contact us and say [your team] is interested in coming, and we’ll send them an invite package.”
The package will contain the tournament rules, ask for team rosters and contact information.
The Haida Nation will perform the February tournament opening ceremony on the 13th at 8 p.m.
Teams wishing to enter the 2022 ANBT can phone Peter Haugan at 250-624-1690 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Norman Galimski | Journalist
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