On Thursday, May 12, 2011, Canadian sports history was made when the nation's first ever professional basketball league was founded.
Andre Levingston and Ian McCarthy, who each own basketball franchises in the Maritimes, founded the league after their successes demonstrated the vast opportunity within the Canadian sports landscape.
"We're extremely excited to found a league that consists of committed, fiscally responsible owners who will operate their teams with the mandates of providing a high level of entertainment for fans and sponsors, and making a difference in their communities," said Levingston.
In addition to providing the highest quality of professional basketball in Canada outside of the NBA, the league will also serve to develop young Canadian athletes. Levingston says the NBL will hold a stipulation that each team is to have a minimum of two Canadian players on their roster each season.
"Today is a great day for Canadians," said McCarthy. "The NBL will embody the virtues of Canadians through conducting business in a responsible, democratic and objective manner."
The league currently has three committed teams (Halifax, Saint John and Quebec City), has received letters of intent from ownership groups in London, Oshawa, Kingston and Barrie Ontario, and continues to be engaged by additional interested markets.
The league will begin operations immediately, and will celebrate the start of its first season in the fall of 2011.