Saskatoon’s 1st CEBL Champs Weekend A Hoot

By Ben Hamill - August 26 2019
Saskatoon’s 1st CEBL Champs Weekend A Hoot

Elite Basketball League national championships have come to Saskatoon. Thanks to the commendable efforts on the part of the Canadian Elite Basketball League, the city of Saskatoon has hosted its very first championships weekend. To say that it was a roaring success would be a gross understatement of what really went down.

If any one team deserves a championship moment in the sun, then its Saskatoon’s Saskatchewan Rattlers. The Rattlers did after all finish 3rd in an 11-team line-up, thereby securing their spot in the inaugural championships weekend. And according to CEBL Commissioner Mike Morreale, everything had gone very near according to plan. Elite Basketball League could not have asked for a more ideal first championships weekend.

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Brand Awareness Is Key

It must be said that the Rattlers have succeeded where many other league teams have failed. They have managed to outlast others who have come and gone – in fact, the Rattlers have thrived when all expectations were that they would not.

Even so, in Morreale’s opinion, there is much that can be improved on yet. But the most important of goals have been achieved in that a specific awareness has now been created around championship leagues in Saskatoon. A tremendous job has been done, said the commissioner during a recent interview, and that is the fact that locals appear to be enjoying the basketball as well as the events scheduled around the games. If any one aspect in sport is to enjoy priority, then surely it should be whether or not fans glean enjoyment from the actual events as well as the games being played by their favourite teams.

Paying It Forward Locally

But the team has achieved so much more than sustainability and longevity. For example – and this is something that really resonates with local young Saskatoon players and residents – the Rattlers recently installed nets up on the rims at all of the popular courts where recreational players hang out. Investing time and resources back into local communities is a vital aspect of building any given brand and the Rattlers have proved themselves to be exceptionally in tune with this particular truth.

The current fan base may be modest, but its also very loyal. The truth of the matter is that the 15,000-seater SaskTel Centre doesn’t exactly lend itself to a feeling of being full-up. Even so, plans to restructure and corner off the centre so as to create a feeling of “fullness” are already in the pipeline.

Long live basketball championship weekends in Saskatoon.

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