Top News

Island Storm to play unbalanced schedule

The Island Storm practised Wednesday at Holland College in preparation for Game 3 with the Halifax Hurricanes.
The Island Storm practised at Holland College in preparation for Game 3 with the Halifax Hurricanes of the 2018 National Basketball League of Canada playoffs.

National Basketball League of Canada gets rid of the two divisions for regular season

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. – The National Basketball League of Canada is trying out a new look this season.

The league is going without two divisions for the first time since its first season eight years ago. The unbalanced schedule will mean Island Storm fans will see the St. John’s Edge twice, once more than last season, and the Storm will travel to the Rock twice to play four games in the Newfoundland and Labrador capital. The Storm didn’t make a trip there in the Edge’s inaugural season, when it played in the Central Division.

Storm owner Duncan Shaw is going along with the majority of the owners but is not a fan of the change.

“It’s the challenge of the logistics of running back and forth across the country,” he said. “Getting from Sudbury on a Friday night to Halifax two days later in a Canadian winter can be a challenge.”

The league lost its franchise in Niagara, Ont., but gained one in Sudbury, Ont., this season. The 10 teams will play a 40-game schedule with each team having 20 home games.

Some fans have expressed a desire to see more of the teams in the other division rather than seeing Cape Breton, Saint John, Halifax and Moncton most of the season.

While there is an added expense with travel without divisions, Shaw said his concern goes deeper than dollars and cents.

“The travel gets hard on the players,” he said, noting the difficulty of flights or bus travel for large men. “There is a cost on the players’ bodies that I really don’t like.”

The unbalanced schedule is for the regular season while no decision has been made for playoffs. Shaw would like to see the league stay with the current division format for playoffs.

“I don't see the value of us having a first-round, five-game series with Windsor.”

He said it would take longer, be harder on players and be expensive.

One plus, Shaw noted, in the regular season schedule was the Storm only plays three games in three nights once this season, compared to two or three times in past years. The Storm plays its three-game stretch Feb. 7-9.

The team hasn’t officially set when training camp will open, but Shaw said it would be in early November.


Schedule

A look at the Island Storm’s 2018-19 National Basketball League of Canada regular season schedule.

Friday, Nov. 16

7 p.m. – Cape Breton Highlanders at Island Storm.

Sunday, Nov 18

2 p.m. – Saint John Riptide at Island Storm.

Thursday, Nov 29

7 p.m. – Kitchener-Waterloo Titans at Island Storm.

Saturday, Dec. 1

7 p.m. – London Lightning at Island Storm.

Saturday, Dec. 8

7 p.m. – Cape Breton Highlanders at Island Storm.

Friday, Dec. 14

6:30 p.m. – Island Storm at St. John's Edge.

Sunday, Dec. 16

1:30 p.m. – Island Storm at St. John's Edge.

Friday, Dec. 21

8 p.m. – Island Storm at Sudbury Five.

Sunday, Dec. 23

3 p.m. – Island Storm at Windsor Express.

Wednesday, Dec. 26

2 p.m. – Saint John Riptide at Island Storm.

Friday, Dec. 28

7 p.m. – Island Storm at Moncton Magic.

Monday, Dec. 31

6:30 p.m. – Moncton Magic at Island Storm.

Thursday, Jan. 3

7 p.m. – Island Storm at Cape Breton Highlanders.

Friday, Jan. 4

7 p.m. – St. John's Edge at Island Storm.

Sunday, Jan. 6

2 p.m. – Island Storm at Cape Breton Highlanders.

Friday, Jan. 11

7 p.m. – Moncton Magic at Island Storm.

Sunday, Jan. 13

2 p.m. – Halifax Hurricanes at Island Storm.

Thursday, Jan. 17

7 p.m. – Saint John Riptide at Island Storm.

Friday, Jan. 18

7 p.m. – Island Storm at Moncton Magic.

Thursday, Jan. 24

7 p.m. – Island Storm at Kitchener-Waterloo Titans.

Saturday, Jan. 26

7 p.m. – Island Storm at London Lightning.

Sunday, Feb. 3

2 p.m. – Saint John Riptide at Island Storm.

Thursday, Feb. 7

7 p.m. – St. John's Edge at Island Storm.

Friday, Feb. 8

7 p.m. – Island Storm at Saint John Riptide.

Saturday, Feb. 9

7 p.m. – Halifax Hurricanes at Island Storm.

Thursday, Feb. 14

7 p.m. – Island Storm at Saint John Riptide.

Monday, Feb. 18

2 p.m. – Saint John Riptide at Island Storm.

Thursday, Feb. 21

7 p.m. – Island Storm at Halifax Hurricanes.

Sunday, Feb. 24

2 p.m. – Island Storm at Moncton Magic.

Friday, March 1

7 p.m. – Cape Breton Highlanders at Island Storm.

Sunday, March 3

2 p.m. – Halifax Hurricanes at Island Storm.

Monday, March 4

7 p.m. – Island Storm at Halifax Hurricanes.

Monday, March 11

7 p.m. – Island Storm at Moncton Magic.

Thursday, March 14

7 p.m. – Sudbury Five at Island Storm.

Sunday, March 17

2 p.m. – Windsor Express at Island Storm.

Thursday, March 21

7 p.m. – Island Storm at Saint John Riptide.

Saturday, March 23

6:30 p.m. – Island Storm at St. John's Edge.

Sunday, March 24

1:30 p.m. – Island Storm at St. John's Edge.

Thursday, March 28

7 p.m. – Island Storm at Halifax Hurricanes.

Saturday, March 30

7 p.m. – Cape Breton Highlanders at Island Storm.

Recent Stories