The Long Island boys basketball championships are returning to the area’s biggest stage.
NYCB Live's Nassau Coliseum will play host to the Long Island Class AA and A Championships on March 10, Senior Manager of Communications Gina Antoniello told Newsday on Wednesday night.
The Coliseum currently hosts the NHL's Islanders for 21 of the team's 41 home games. It also is the home of the G League’s Long Island Nets and occasionally holds regular-season games for both boys and girls high school basketball. The Coliseum will host the Long Island championships for the first time since the “mid-to-late 1970’s” according to Long Island Nets Vice President of Business Operations Alton Byrd.
“When we started this franchise three years ago, one of my biggest wishes was to bring basketball on Long Island back to the Coliseum and have the Long Island Nets be integral in bringing high school basketball back here,” Byrd said.
The "A" championship will tip off at 6 p.m. followed by the "AA" championship at 8 p.m. The Long Island Nets will also take the court earlier in the day at 3 p.m. against the Iowa Wolves.
Alton said the event planning began “about a year ago” and scheduling the games in coordination with a Long Island Nets game was one of the main goals from the outset.
“As this building gets programming over time it becomes harder but luckily this time we were able to find a date that worked that would coincide with a Long Island Nets game and make it efficient for everybody and be a real basketball day for Long Island,” Byrd said. “And it’s really come to fruition now.”
Byrd is optimistic that March 10 will mark the beginning of a long and successful partnership between the Long Island Nets and the Long Island championships at the Coliseum.
“If they’ll have us, we’re hopeful that that the Long Island basketball championships will be here for many years to come,” Byrd said.