On August 9, the National Basketball League of Canada announced that Oshawa was the first expansion team to join the league in its opening season.
Oshawa Power games will tip off in early November at the General Motors Centre, host of the 18 regular season home game schedule.
Drew Ebanks, public relations contact for the team says the Motor City was selected to be included carefully. “Oshawa as a city is in a unique situation as the ownership group thought the city was close enough, yet at the same time far enough away from Toronto to be able to attract fans from within the city limits as well as fans from all over Durham Region,” he says. “It’s a win-win situation!”
For those who have never been to a national level game, Ebanks says to expect the best of the best. “Fans can expect the highest level of basketball in Canada.”
“Tons of high-level play, high tempo games. Exciting action and a complete value-conscious entertainment experience for the whole family.”
The General Motors Centre was selected to be the home court for the team. “There was a little investment that had to be made on the teams part to get the arena up to basketball standards, but we truly appreciate the support from the city,” says Ebanks.
As for the team name? The league mobilized the power of online and ran a contest on the web. Ebanks says there was over 150 names submitted for consideration, while building interest in the city’s first ever professional basketball team. In the end, it was a combination of efforts to create Oshawa Power meant to epitomizes the force of a community coming together as one.
Former National Basketball League (NBA) player Mark Strickland was named head coach of the team. A Temple University grad, Strickland spent eight years in the NBA for six teams including Miami, Atlanta and Dallas. He also has been a scout and coach for several teams, including the Cleveland Magic.
“I can’t wait to get up there to Oshawa,” says Strickland in a release. “No time to rest, it’s time to work. I want to win right away.”
Oshawa Power’s first game will be against the Quebec Kebs in Quebec City on October 30. They will have their first home court advantage on November 3, when they take the floor against the Moncton Miracles.