The level of confidence you need to have to name a basketball tournament “The Basketball Tournament” is out of control. Like Brad Pitt in “Fight Club” kind of confidence. But in this case, it works.
The Basketball Tournament (TBT) lives up to the hype. All kinds of former college stars playing professionally overseas like Jimmer Fredette (BYU), Aaron Craft (Ohio State), and Hakim Warrick (Syracuse) come back to the United States in the summer to play in a $2 million, winner-take-all, 64-team tournament hosted on ESPN.
We had one of our own competing in TBT for the second consecutive season. Long Beach State alum Casper Ware played for Team Challenge ALS, assembled by former Boston College star Sean Marshall to help promote awareness of the disease. After losing in the championship last season, Ware’s Team Challenge ALS got bounced in the Regional Final this year 78-67 to Eberlein Drive. Ware led his team with 22 points in the loss.
Ware, 28, is a superstar in the LBSU community and it’s awesome to see him on the big stage still. He was added to the Portland Trail Blazers’ Summer League team earlier in the summer after winning the National Basketball League championship with Melbourne United in Australia last season. He was given NBL First Team honors for the second consecutive season after averaging 16.7 points and 4.4 assists. Ware finished fourth the MVP voting.
While Ware continues to chase his NBA dream, it’s unclear if he’ll return to Melbourne for his third season with the club. He’s proven he can play with the best while in the Drew League and TBT and there’s no doubt that he deserves a shot in the NBA. I just hope he gets it.
You’re telling me the Orlando Magic don’t have a spot for Casper Ware? Give me a break. If he signed there he’d immediately become the best player on that squad. Give him a chance.