Winnipeg to replace historic six-decade-old pro basketball court

The basketball court surface that has served Winnipeg for six decades is finally getting replaced.

Basketball Manitoba and the Winnipeg Sea Bears announced Tuesday that a new portable hardwood court is coming to Manitoba — one identical to those used in NCAA March Madness tournaments, the FIBA World Cup, and by several NBA teams.

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The previous court, constructed in 1955, first arrived in Manitoba from North Dakota in the mid-1960s. It was notably used for the Pan Am Games in both 1967 and 1999, as well as for semi-regular NBA exhibition games in Winnipeg throughout the 1990s and 2000s.

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It has also appeared in basketball-themed movies shot in the city, most recently 2022’s Champions, starring Woody Harrelson.

The court was also home to the Sea Bears’ predecessors in local pro basketball — the Winnipeg Thunder and Winnipeg Cyclone, and acted as home court for the current CEBL team’s inaugural season last year.

Basketball Manitoba said the court will make one last appearance before being replaced, in Dauphin for the 2024 Manitoba Games this August.

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