Growlers BASKETBALL! New CEBL team for Newfoundland.

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ST JOHN’S, Newfoundland – Deacon Sports and Entertainment has announced the will be bring a new CEBL -Canadian Elite Basketball League team to St John’s for the 2022 season and they are staying on-brand calling the team the Growlers. The new team will be playing at the Memorial University Field House under a three year $75,000.00 per year agreement with MUN. Mike Morreale Commissioner and CEO of the league joined Dean MacDonald of Deacon Sports and officials from MUN for the announcement at the Field House this morning.

Growlers Basketball joins a league with nine other teams from across Canada making it the largest professional sports league in Canada with 10 teams in 6 provinces and are affiliated with the The Basketball Champions League Americas (BCLA), a continental league in the Americas. It’s created through an innovative partnership between FIBA, federations and leagues.

St. John’s and the surrounding area is known to be an outstanding sports community with exceptional fan support, so we’re excited to bring the best pro basketball in Canada outside of the NBA to Newfoundland,” said Mike Morreale, commissioner and chief executive officer of the CEBL. “Dean MacDonald, Glenn Stanford, and the staff at Deacon Sports and Entertainment have an unparalleled passion for investing in the community through sports ownership and the Growlers Give program. With 75 percent of our team rosters comprised of Canadian players, the CEBL has the highest percentage of Canadian players of any pro sports league in the country.”

Mike Morreale Commissioner and CEO of CEBL, Dr. Vianne Timmons, O.C., president and vice-chancellor, Memorial University and Dean MacDonald of Deacon Sports and Entertainment announce Growlers Basketball at the MUN Field House November 26, 2021. Photo By Greg Locke / Stray Light Media.

The CEBL is the only Canadian-based global team sports brand, with games broadcast around the world, and across Canada on CBC. The CEBL season runs May through August, enabling the league to attract players with experience in the NBA, NBA G League, top international leagues, the Canadian National team program, top NCAA programs, as well as from U SPORTS.

Dean MacDonald, Deacon Sports and Entertainment.

“To have the opportunity to bring professional basketball of world class caliber to Newfoundland to play in front of our tremendous fans is extremely exciting,” said MacDonald, chair of Deacon Sports and Entertainment. “We’re eager to extend the success of our Newfoundland Growlers brand from hockey in the winter to a prestigious pro basketball league in the summer, delivering exceptional entertainment to our community year around.

Under the rental agreement with MUN DSE plans to expand the seating capacity at the Field House to accommodate approximately 2,500 fans for 10 regular season home games starting in May 2022. Deposits on tickets for priority seating for the 2022 season may be placed at www.GrowlersBasketball.ca.  

Along with a financial benefit, there will also be an opportunity for joint skills development sessions for Seahawks basketball players with the Growlers and potential work-terms for Memorial students with Deacon Sports and Entertainment.

The Newfoundland Growlers are the tenth CEBL franchise located across six provinces. Since launching prior to the 2019 season with teams located in Edmonton, Hamilton, Guelph, Niagara (St. Catharines), Saskatchewan (Saskatoon), and Fraser Valley (Abbotsford), the CEBL added a franchise in Ottawa in 2020, and is welcoming Scarborough, Montreal, and St. John’s starting in 2022.

DSE is the parent company of the Newfoundland Growlers (ECHL), which is affiliated with the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Trois-Riviéres Lions (ECHL), affiliate of the Montreal Canadiens, and the Iowa Heartlanders (ECHL), affiliate of the Minnesota Wild. DSE’s charitable arm, Growlers Give, has donated approximately $500,000 directly back into the community through partnerships with numerous community groups in Newfoundland.


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