Canadian Elite Basketball League to expand to Winnipeg in 2023

Winnipeg is getting back in the pro basketball game.

In a statement Wednesday, the Canadian Elite Basketball League (CEBL) — the top minor professional league in the country and the only Canadian league recognized by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) — announced Winnipeg will host a team beginning in the 2023 season.

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“With teams in British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan, and in Ontario, Quebec, and Newfoundland, having a CEBL franchise located in Manitoba unifies the geographic reach of Canada’s national pro basketball league,” league commissioner Mike Morreale said.

“Winnipeg is an ideal market with a rich basketball history and a real passion for the game. It has always been a matter of ‘when’ not ‘if’ we would place a club in Winnipeg.”

The Winnipeg team — which has yet to be named, although the CEBL said information about the name, colours and logo are expected “in the coming weeks — joins the Calgary Surge as the league’s newest franchise.

Montreal’s team, the Alliance, is also a recent addition to the league, playing its first season this year.

Winnipeg was previously home to the Cyclone of the now-defunct International Basketball Association from 1995 to 2001, which came after the Winnipeg Thunder (1992 to 1994) of the World Basketball League, followed by the National Basketball League.

Click to play video: 'Winnipegger playing Division I hoops'

Winnipegger playing Division I hoops

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