Second hardwood floor being contemplated for Jersey Mike Jamaica Classic

By Paul A Reid
Observer writer

Monday, December 10, 2018

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ROSE HALL, St James — The addition of a second hardwood floor for next year's third staging of the Jersey Mike's Jamaica Classic men's NCAA basketball tournament could mean immediate benefit to Jamaican players as they would be able to use the court in local events.

At last year's inaugural staging of the event, a brand new floor costing well over US$100,000 was put down at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, but Jacob Ridenhour, executive director of the event, said they will have to get a second floor and backboard so the teams playing in the Jamaica Classic will have it to warm up or to practise prior to their games.

A second court would be available to the Jamaica Basketball Association and the Inter-secondary Schools Sports Association to stage games, he said.

“The basketball has been great,” he told the Jamaica Observer at the recent event. “I still have a challenge with practice floor and goals. All the coaches have asked for a practice court close enough. That is an obstacle, I have to figure it out and the only solution that is to buy them and get them here.”

Ridenhour said they were hesitant to allow local use of the only floor, if it was not used for basketball only. “What needs to happen is that this here needs to be protected because it can last us 10 years and we can get a practice court that can be used for more basketball.

“A basketball court needs to be a basketball court. Here they want a hardwood floor to be a multi-purpose court to play netball, volleyball and other sports. You can't have the level of floor needed for the tournament events,” he said

While he said basketball courts are often times used for other events such as volleyball, “they only use them for games, not practice and it still takes away from the quality of the court”.

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