May 12, 2011 - Premier Basketball League (PBL) - Saint John Riptide
On Thursday May 12, Canadian sports history was made when the nation's first ever national professional basketball league was founded.
Andre Levingston and Ian McCarthy, who each own basketball franchises in the Maritimes, founded the league after their successes demonstrated the vast opportunity within the Canadian sports landscape.
"We're extremely excited to found a league that consists of committed, fiscally responsible owners who will operate their teams with the mandates of providing a high level of entertainment for fans and sponsors, and making a difference in their communities," said Levingtson.
In addition to providing the highest quality of professional basketball in Canada outside of the NBA, the league will also serve to develop young Canadian athletes. Levingston says the NBL will hold a stipulation that each team is to have a minimum of two Canadian players on their roster each season.
"Today is a great day for Canadians," said McCarthy. "The NBL will embody the virtues of Canadians though conducting business in a responsible, democratic and objective manner."
The league will be owned jointly by the member teams and all member teams will have an equal vote on the day to day business of the league.
The league currently has three committed teams (Halifax, Saint John, and Quebec City), and has received letters of intent from ownership groups in Moncton, New Brunswick and London, Oshawa, Kingston, and Barrie Ontario.
The next phase for the league is finalizing ownership groups, hiring a President and a Commissioner, and opening the league office which shall be in the Greater Toronto Area.
The league will begin operations immediately, and will celebrate the start of its first season in the fall of 2011. For more information visit www.nblcanada.ca or www.lnbcanada.ca.