CORNWALL - It will be a busy and historic weekend for the seven teams in the National Basketball League of Canada.
© Jason Simmonds/Journal Pioneer
The league, which will tip-off its inaugural season in late October, will hold an owners meeting, coaches meeting, two-day player combine and a player draft.
"There is lots of stuff on the go," said Duncan Shaw, co-owner of the yet-to-be-named "Island" franchise that will play out of Credit Union Place in Summerside.
The "Island" team will begin training camp in October. It will open the regular season at home against Quebec City on Thursday, Nov. 3, at 7 p.m.
The owners are expected to meet all day today.
"There are lots of logistical things to be done," said Shaw. "We are meeting with the head of officiating (Mike Homsy) to talk about the rules and some of the logistics of the game itself.
"We are finalizing some bits and pieces around scheduling, and a lot of business stuff around contracts. We want to make sure we have all our ducks in a row so we are ready to go when basketball season starts."
Joe Salerno, who was named the "Island" squad's head coach and vice-president of player personnel on Wednesday, will participate in tonight's coaches meeting. The rules of Saturday and Sunday's combine, where coaches will have an opportunity to evaluate potential players in practice and scrimmage situations, will be discussed.
The weekend will conclude with the player draft on Sunday at 8 p.m., AT. Each team will draft one import and two Canadians, noted Shaw. The rest of the roster will be filled out at training camp.
"There are lots of logistical things to be done. We are meeting with the head of officiating (Mike Homsy) to talk about the rules and some of the logistics of the game itself. We are finalizing some bits and pieces around scheduling, and a lot of business stuff around contracts. We want to make sure we have all our ducks in a row so we are ready to go when basketball season starts." Duncan Shaw, co-owner of the "Island" squad
"We are getting a huge amount of interest from folks who aren't attending the combine, but are interested in playing," said Shaw. "That interest is coming from players, agents and coaches referring their players."
Homsy, who resides in Kirkland, Que., has officiated in the 2004 Olympics, 2007 Olympic qualifying games and 2007 men's world championship.
"We are thrilled to have someone of Mr. Homsy's calibre on board with our league," said NBL of Canada president and CEO Andre Levingston in a media release. "I'm confident that his experience and integrity will help the NBL (of) Canada develop into one of the most highly respected professional leagues the world has ever seen."
Will there be an opportunity for Prince Edward Island officials to work league games?
"That's one of my questions," answered Shaw. "They (league) focused on finding their head of officiating that will be in charge overall first.
"As an owners group, we meet him for the first time this weekend. We are playing FIBA rules, which are the same rules the universities play under. The folks (officials) that do the university and high school games will be qualified from a rules point of view.
"We should be in a position that hopefully some of the Island officials will be willing to step up."