Tip-Off Classic weekend to provide excitement, top competition to SB Mavericks and fans

Monday, December 1st

By Kirk Copeland
(318) 525-8853 cell

(Shreveport, LA)  – One of the most anticipated events on the schedule finally arrives this weekend as the Shreveport-Bossier Mavericks welcome three of the ABA’s top teams to Hirsch Memorial Coliseum for the Tip-Off Classic this Saturday and Sunday.

The Mavericks, ranked number one in the ABA Power Rankings all season, will host the Central Texas Rhythm, Indy Naptown All-Stars (from Indianapolis), and Metroplex Lightning (from Dallas-Fort Worth) this weekend, hoping to defend their 2013 title in the tournament.

“We’re excited to bring these three great teams in to Shreveport for what should be a great weekend of basketball,” said Shreveport-Bossier head coach Steve Tucker, who’s Mavericks sport a 6-0 record on the young season. “It will be the best basketball we’ve faced all season.”

Central Texas will face the Mavericks Saturday at 8 p.m. while Metroplex and Indy Naptown battle at 6 p.m. Winners of those games meet up at 6 p.m. Sunday for the championship, while the losers tangle at 4 p.m. Sunday in the consolation game.

“We are very excited to be part of the Classic this year,” said Rhythm head coach Dennis Porter. “It’s a great opportunity for our team to face the best teams in the ABA.”

Central Texas (6-4) features a trio of high scorers, led by point guard Tre Nichols from Boise State. Curtis Jones Jr. of McMurray College and small forward Ryan Holmes of Philander Smith (Ark.) make up a big part of a high-scoring attack for the team from Marble Falls, Texas.

Indy Naptown head coach Kevin Jones has assembled a team of high-flying players from in and around the Indianapolis area, including his son, guard KyRee Jones of Maryland-East Shore by way of Northern Illinois. Guard Aaron Weeden from Kankakee College in Illinois and thrilling forward Kenny Edwards from Rogers State make up the core of the All-Stars (4-1) lineup. Edwards gained national acclaim when he won the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest in Indianapolis last year.

“He does dunks in a game like I’ve never seen in 20-plus years of coaching at the college level,” said Jones of Edwards. “He’s amazing.”

Jones and his All-Stars echoed Porter’s excitement to be part of the Tip-Off Classic.

“This is a great event to be a part of,” said Jones. “I’ve always believed in the philosophy that if you want to be the best, you have to play the best, and the best basketball in our league is played in Shreveport.”

Metroplex Lightning head coach Mitchell Neal brings in a team led by 38-year-old veteran shooting guard Torrance Moody, and also includes McNeese State 6-foot-6 power forward Bradley Jarvis.

“Fans should be ready for the best basketball they’ve seen so far,” said Neal. “We hope to give the Mavericks a great game.”

Fans who buy tickets on either Saturday or Sunday get admission to both games each night, with ticket prices starting at $10, and family packages starting at $25. Visit for more details.

Tickets for 2014-15 Shreveport-Bossier Mavericks games are on sale now at or at the Hirsch Memorial Coliseum box office, which can be reached at (318) 631-4930.

The Shreveport-Bossier Mavericks and KSLA News 12 have partnered to give you the latest Mavs news and fun giveaways right on your cell phone. All you have to do is text “Mavericks” to 81212 to get involved.

Shreveport-Bossier Mavericks Basketball

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