The BIG3 American League brings 3-on-3 basketball to the national stage
Allen Iverson and Chauncey Billups along with Jason Williams and Mike Bibby are all making a comeback this summer. Not to the NBA, but to the new 3-on-3 basketball league that will air exclusively on Fox Sports 1 in June.
The impetus behind this new project has been spearheaded by hip-hop legend and Hollywood actor Ice Cube. His idea came to fruition back in January when the announcement was officially made.
The new 3-on-3 professional basketball league will bring NBA legends and former players who will participate in a touring league that will last ten weeks. The BIG3 league will have eight teams comprised of five players coupled with a head coach for each roster.
The league will be managed by the players and the appointed Commissioner Roger Mason Jr. a former player in the NBA. Of course, these players are not in the prime of their careers but are competitive none the less. The game format of 3-on-3 is designed for excitement and fierce competition between the former marquee names.
Kenyon Martin, Jermaine O’Neal, and Rashard Lewis will be playing in this tournament. The coaches also add an element of intrigue as NBA legends Gary Payton and Julius “Dr.J” Erving will be calling plays on the sidelines.
Now that we have highlighted the caliber of players that will be participating, let us have a look at how the game will be played and what rules apply.
RULES OF 3 ON 3:
- The standard two and three point shots are intact.
- A half court game is implemented.
- There will be a 4-point shot on the court highlighted as a 4″ circle.
- The first team to 60 points wins / Halftime occurs when a team scores 30 points.
- Personal fouls result in team fouls, no foul out rule.
- A defensive three-second rule does not apply.
The league’s version is similar to the traditional three on three basketball game with a few variations to enhance the excitement for fans. The launching day of the BIG3 League will be on June 25th at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
The inaugural day will showcase four games that will segway into a nationwide tour through Los Angeles and Seattle as well as Charlotte to name a few. The championship game will be played in Las Vegas on August 26th at the T-Mobile Arena which will culminate a 10-week tour of fierce basketball action.
The BIG3 held it's inaugural draft this month. Some of the best and most respected basketball players in the world flew into Las Vegas to take part in the Draft and Combine process. Some were confirmed player captains (like Chauncey Billups, Stephen Jackson, Jason Williams and Brian Scalabrine), some were coaches (like retired legends Julius "Dr. J" Erving, Gary Payton and Clyde Drexler), while most were recent NBA standouts ready to show that they deserve to get back on the court.
Success of the BIG3 League will depend on the ratings it produces, fans will have to support this new brand of entertainment and patronize the games as well. Ticket sales and viewership will determine whether or not this concept will have longevity.
If the league can eventually attract the likes of Kobe Bryant or Kevin Garnett that would further legitimize the tournament. If retired legends of the NBA start signing up to play in the future that would provide a major incentive for others to follow suit.
The timing of this tournament could not be more fitting, sports fans will be occupied with an event that begins right after the NBA Finals and will end before the start of another football season in the NFL.