The Continental Basketball league kicked off on Friday, May 12 at the Teslim Balogun Stadium in Surulere, Lagos.
The tournament tagged #MayMadness will be played across 3 African cities (Lagos, Libreville and Yaounde) with six participating teams. The teams are Lagos Warriors, Lagos City Stars, Eko Kings, Yaounde Giants, Abidjan Raiders and Izobe Dragons.
What did we learn from the opening weekend of the tournament?
The basketball on showcase is top notch. You would be forgiven for thinking that this tournament being an “African” tournament would be slow or the game would be filled with boring layups and every possession will end up in a post move. That was far from the case, the game was flying at an electric pace. The long range specialists were on the floor, the players were quick and ready to go all out on every play. In all honesty, each game was captivating from the tip-off..
There were 5 games played over the weekend and i feel like we now have an idea of what each team brings, so let me give you guys my premature pick for champions, The Yaounde Giants.
I feel bad for picking the Giants, I mean there are three Lagos teams in this tournament and i’m supposed to be patriotic and all that. However I feel the Yaounde Giants are championship contenders and it was evident from the first time they took to the floor.
The team from Cameroon defeated the Lagos Warriors 104 – 66 in the opening game of the tournament led by 26 points from forward Thierry Bogmis as well as the shooting skills of their American star, Ian Carter who was on fire from beyond the arc. In their second game of the tournament, they toppled the Lagos City Stars 92-84 with guard Esters Lanerryl Jones leading all scorers with 19 points. The Giants are a really good team and it will be interesting to see how the tournament turns out for them.
For my Lagos teams, I like what i saw from the Eko Kings in their game against the Abidjan Raiders. led by super performances by guards Mark Hill and Kelechi Anuna, the Kings won the game 71 – 61 after winning their first game against fellow Lagosians, Lagos Warriors 93 – 77 . They are the only other team in the tournament with 2 wins from the first two games and they aim to make it 3 wins on Tuesday night when they face off against the Libreville Izobe Dragons.
The Continental Basketball League is on full throttle now, you can follow all the happenings on social media at @CBLAfrica on Twitter and Instagram. #CBLAfrica