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Old 14-01-2011, 08:26 AM   #1
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Last October's preseason game at Montreal's Bell Centre (Centre Bell in French for this is in a predominately French-speaking province and Canada in general) between the Toronto Raptors and the New York Knicks got reminded about what I wrote back in 2005 about Montreal's NBA prospects, more likely as an expansion city. Let me get these points out right away: Anything Montreal (or Vancouver for that matter) gets as far as the NBA is concerned rests heavily on the Raptors' success in the NBA and would determine if further expansion into Canada is viable. Toronto is much more fertile and proven as far basketball talent over the years is concerned and possess the corporate base that can subsidize big-time pro sports. More on that later. Also, the NBA is NOT going to expand any time soon, especially with all of that recent talk from David Stern of contraction.

It would be interesting if Montreal was among the shortlist of cities for the NBA and somehow got a team. Being the second-largest Francophone city in the world after, of course, Paris, would definitely bring a Gallic flavor and charm to the sport with all of the ads, programs, and PAs in French. Yes, there still exists a large English-speaking community, but it's French that rules. But there is no talk of that at all, and that's not limited to the possible prospective owner like those from the Quebecor Media conglomerate (just throwing it as an example). Montreal has had some local talent making it into the NCAA and the NBA in recent times like Ryan Gomes, Samuel Dalembert, Prosper Karangwa, Robert Sacre, and Joel Anthony. Not to mention Bill Wennington. But it's just that, recent. Not over the years like Toronto. Bell Centre is a modern upscale facility in downtown Montreal that can seat at least 22,000 for basketball--the aforementioned preseason game was well-attended--though it was opened in 1996. Toronto could use, in theory, a Canadian rival again. This time based from French Canada instead of western Canada like Vancouver was (and could still happen again if done right and when). Montreal could use an alternative pro sports team to occupy and dominate the local sports media during the cold winter like the NHL's legendary Montreal Canadiens (affectionately known as the Habs) always do there. And it is increasingly multicultural demographically over the past four decades.

However and honestly, I could not see Montreal entering the NBA happening anytime soon. Montreal is a funny sports town, as I already illustrated in the ABA/PBL thread. The Canadiens own Montreal in every way in that city and aren't going anywhere. Ice hockey, like everywhere in Canada, is their sports lifeblood and passion in the national landscape for decades and centuries. Baseball's Montreal Expos were consistently solid in the National League until its sad, struggling demise noted by its notoriously poor attendance at home games with 2000+ at the ugly Olympic Stadium in 2004 before moving to Washington, DC and becoming the Nationals--I miss my Expos. Indoor lacrosse flickered a year at the Bell Centre with the Express, and there was even a roller hockey team called the Roadrunners in the mid-90s playing at the old Forum, now an entertainment complex. With the impending arrival of the Montreal Impact in the MLS starting in 2012 as the third Canadian entry into the soccer league after Toronto FC and the Vancouver Whitecaps (co-owned by Steve Nash, a big soccer fan) coming in this year dominating the summer-fall months, for soccer has passionate fans there, you can forget MLB returning to Montreal; there's still some bitterness over the attempts to save it and the move itself. The only other sports success these days in Montreal lies with the CFL's Montreal Alouettes, currently the back-to-back Grey Cup champs, widely regarded the best team in all of the CFL for several years running.

Its (minor) pro basketball history is spotty and unsuccessful. The first pro basketball team I heard of based there was the Montreal Dragons in 1994 playing in a dump of a venue known as the Verdun Arena on a small nearby island with little promotion and no TV coverage. And they were bad playing in the all-Canadian National Basketball League lasting only a season. Several years later, the ABA had the bright idea to bring their ball in Montreal at the Pierre Charbonneau Centre with the Matrix, that was originally partially owned by Jerome Williams. Then an ownership change prompted a name change to the Royal. Read lots more on the ABA/PBL thread. It never tasted CBA, USBL, GBL, or even WBL ball. At the same time with the Matrix/Royal in their second season when they were dormat, along came the Sasquatch and their ownership/sponsorship woes in their lone season in the PBL's turmoiled second season. So it hasn't proven itself as a true fertile ground for pro basketball. Maybe more in my next post here.
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Old 08-03-2011, 01:25 PM   #2
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Top five reasons why Montreal should get an NBA team. No doubt inspired by the first NBA regular season games in London involving the Toronto Raptors.

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/6...ba-team#page/3
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Old 08-03-2011, 02:12 PM   #3
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Its hard enough for the Raps to attract players do you honestly think players will want to go to a city that is freezing cold in the winter, is in Canada and doesn't speak english? I don't think it will work if players don't want to play there and as we have been seeing lately the best players are getting out of the smaller markets.

If Canada deserves a second franchise it should be Vancouver. The 'Nucks owners have expressed interest and if they were the owners it would have a much better chance of success than the Grizz. Oh and people in Van speak English!
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Old 08-03-2011, 02:33 PM   #4
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Vancouver or bust
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Old 08-03-2011, 02:35 PM   #5
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Vancouver or bust
I'm in agreeance.
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Old 12-05-2011, 07:47 AM   #6
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Its hard enough for the Raps to attract players do you honestly think players will want to go to a city that is freezing cold in the winter, is in Canada and doesn't speak english? I don't think it will work if players don't want to play there and as we have been seeing lately the best players are getting out of the smaller markets.

If Canada deserves a second franchise it should be Vancouver. The 'Nucks owners have expressed interest and if they were the owners it would have a much better chance of success than the Grizz. Oh and people in Van speak English!
Yeah, it's true in Toronto's case these days despite being a very cool city in its own right with a lot going for it. Again, it goes in part to the general American ignorance about Canada. For the Raptors to get a superstar on their roster, they would have to get lucky. In a way, they did with Damon Stoudemire, Vince Carter, and Chris Bosh. It would seem to make sense for a Canadian franchise in this era of American stars' reluctance to head northward to have a Canadian as a superstar to drum interest like Steve Nash. However, after Nash, what Canadian do we see coming down the pipeline who can act as a bonafide NBA superstar? Beyond that, maybe get themselves some young Europeans or Asians with a lots of upside with NBA-ready game that have the talent to be superstars.

There are actual half-truths regarding Montreal. Again, the NBA in Montreal as a franchise holder is just an unviable pipe dream. If this were 37 years ago, the NBA might have considered Montreal as a city to have the NBA, likely to move to than expansion. But in hindsight, it's all 50/50. At the time, it was not only the second-largest French-speaking city in the world (still is), it was also the largest Canadian city. Though I do think Toronto was get greater courting. Not just because of the history of the Toronto Huskies but also of the fact the Buffalo Braves used to play select home games at the legendary Maple Leaf Gardens during the mid-70s to expand their fan base, since Toronto at times is considered part of the Buffalo market (like in the NFL) and vice versa. It's partly why there's no NBA team in Buffalo even with the HSBC Arena, home of the Sabres.

To understand Montreal's nature, you would have to seriously consider what was going on at that time frame up to the 70s and even beyond that. Montreal presently has one foot in Europe and one foot in North America, which makes for an interesting mix with its predominately French outlook. The city, outside of its love of the Habs and some soccer like the Impact for example, is more of an arts and culture-oriented city with festivals for everything like stand-up comedy, hot-air balloons, film, ice sculptures, theatre, and jazz. Very much so--Quebec's Ministry of Culture spends more money on its department than its provincial counterparts largely because of the need to preserve its French heritage. Also, some sports get greater attention than the rest of the nation like F1 racing, speed skating, short track, and handball. Football, the gridiron variety, is huge in the province of Quebec with the Alouettes winning back to back CFL Grey Cups and Quebec City's Francophone University of Laval winning the CIS football title, the Vanier Cup, in its hometown. Quebec's Ministry of Culture spends more on its department than any of the other provinces. Despite it is predominately French-speaking, it (and the rest of the province of Quebec) IS still part of Canada, and there are plenty of residents in the island city who do speak English very well. Lots of them! If you live up there and spoke nothing but English all your life, you'll survive. There still exists a strong and large English community--notice the Montreal flag has not just the fluer-de-lis but the Scottish thistle, the English rose, and the Irish shamrock too. It's just that when you go into the more rural areas and possibly go up the St. Lawrence River to Quebec City, the provincial capital, it gets strongly French. Though you will find plenty of Quebec City residents who can speak English well.

The social programs, the pro-French cultural dominance, and Parti Quebecois are part of the legacy from the days of the strictly enforced and government-approved Roman Catholic control, when lots of the French Quebec residents were living in the rural areas and small towns. Back to up the 50s, there existed immense prejudice, discrimination, and abuse against the French Canadians. For example, they weren't permitted to speak French in Montreal business establishments like stores, even if the customers were French. These things culminated with the Richard Riots in Montreal. Liberation theology in the 1960s was as strong in that province as it was in Latin America because of the Catholic heritage during its height. During the 60s, then-PM Lester Pearson, the Liberal Party leader, made some concessions with some policies to make it more truly bilingual on the national level to curry favor with the Quebec residents (and to a lesser extent, the Acadians in New Brunswick). Pierre Trudeau, his successor, followed suit. The Quiet Revolution, featuring Rene Levesque and the FLQ, during the 1970s and after it caused Quebec politics to become less dependent on the old Church and started modernizing. Social programs became very popular like with preserving and fortifying the French language like with the controversial Bill 101 (mandating French-only signage outside with English wording not being as large as French and having greetings only in French, among other things) and the aforementioned Quebec's Ministry of Culture pumping funding to cultivate a very strong and built-in French culture like movies (like Denys Arcand's films) and French-Canadian pop culture like recording artists and its own TV networks like V (formerly TQS), sports channel RDS, and TVA. It was especially so with those who lived like serfs in fiefdoms. All of this does have a bearing on the way Quebecers who, while still Canadians, think now since it was all relatively recent historically.

This pride for being French during the Quiet Revolution and the rise of the Parti Quebecois, a separatist-minded political party with a social democratic angle being in the most progressive Canadian province, caused great anxiety in the English community there, as it operated and dominated the economic and cultural structure at the time, with them moving many of its establishments including the iconic Bank of Montreal to Toronto, eventually making in part that city become by the mid-80s the largest city in Canada and the financial centre for all of Canada.

Referendums for seceeding from Canada in both 1980 and 1995 both came out with staying in Canada, with the latter a more narrowly margin victory for the No vote. Especially with the very recent Canadian elections over a week ago on Monday with the social democratic party, the New Democratic Party, winning 57 more seats in Quebec (boosting it to its best ever electoral showing with 103 seats in Ottawa's Parliament, making it the Oppositional Party to the Conservatives) than it did in the last election three years ago while the soundly-abandonded Bloc Quebecois lost a whopping 45, secession is not an option for the forseeable future in Quebec. Voters there were fed up with its one-note and narrow-interest leadership under Gilles Duceppe. The Bloc Quebecois was supposed to be an interim type of party needed only succession; it was never intended to be a permanent fixture. Hopefully, Quebec will see that it can have a prosperous future as part of Canada but where its cultural distinctiveness is fully preserved and cherished and abandon the Quebec Republic dreams.

Yeah, it can get cold there in the winter too, especially with the occasional ice storms. Back to the basketball in Montreal, because of the fact basketball isn't a full fledged part of the sports landscape there in its history, it will be risky for the NBA to have a team there. Yes, there definitely IS a basketball culture there, a number of Montreal basketball products like Prosper Karangwa, Joel Anthony, Sam Dalembert, Mohamed Hachad, Ryan Gomes, and Juan Mendez is evidence of that, but it's marginal compared to even lacrosse. The grassroots is not as fertile as in other cities in North America. It will take a few more decades for Montreal to be fully mature in basketball culture. Plus, it needs to have strong support for a minor pro basketball franchise (with a quality facility there not named Bell Centre it can appreciate) for years to prove its viability like in Halifax. Hell, Quebec City has proved that to an extent with the ABA/PBL's Kebs.

You're right, Bucky. Vancouver is much better in line for Canada to have a second NBA franchise than Montreal. Keeps things balanced regionally.
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Old 12-05-2011, 05:47 PM   #7
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I don't think the NBA is going to expand any time soon, they will need to kick one of the smaller markets out if they want to add Vancouver in.
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Aoccdrnig to rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer is at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae we do not raed ervey lteter by itslef but the wrod as a wlohe.

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Old 16-06-2011, 10:27 AM   #8
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If Montreal wants to get into pro basketball again this time around, its best chance lies in the nascent National Basketball League of Canada. Right now, the nearby city-suburb of Laval (population 376,000) is interested in getting a team there as one of the inaugural teams this upcoming season. As it currently stands, Montreal lacks a suitable modern arena in the eyes of the NBL Canada brass that is still medium-sized with decent enough amenities like a TV studio, outside of the too-big Bell Centre. The sport of basketball needs a chance to grow even further there as it got burned too many times on the minor pro level. Perhaps Laval can give it that shot and give the Quebec City Kebs a provincial rival. Its arena, the Colisee de Laval, seats around 4000 with the primary tenant being Quebec junior hockey's Laval Arctic, which is good enough for NBL Canada.
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Old 08-12-2011, 12:39 PM   #9
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Can you name any notable NBA players from Montreal? Not many can do that. Many aren't that well-known. Those that do stay briefly. In fact, I mentioned several basketball players from Montreal on this thread, virtually everybody except one: Bill Wennington. He of the second half of those Chicago Bulls NBA titles, a teammate of Chris Mullin at St. John's, a member of the 1984 Canadian Olympic basketball team. There are reasons why. Basketball isn't as big in La Belle Province in terms of mass domestic coverage, as already mentioned, since culturally for a lot of adults it was a big time sport from them. Participation is big though at the youth level. Doesn't get as much funding in its Quebec Basketball like Ontario Basketball or Basketball BC does. None of the RSEQ schools are considered serious CIS contenders for the Final 8 W.P. McGee Trophy. Grassroots basketball in Quebec is a bit behind in say Ontario. Quebec gets little representation compared to Ontario (major Canadian leader in NBA player production) and British Columbia (essentially Steve Nash).

For the record there were six NBA players from Montreal. Heard of Ron Crevier and Stewart Granger but didn't know they were from Montreal.
http://bleacherreport.com/articles/9...-from-montreal
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Old 29-02-2012, 07:37 PM   #10
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Samuel Dalembert was born in Haiti but grew up in Montreal.
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Old 01-03-2012, 11:31 AM   #11
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There are a few from Toronto as well, plying their trade in the NBA.

One being Tristan Thompson.

Plus there are a few in the American College system at present from either Ontario or Quebec
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So Far 2 Taranaki Players have made in to the NBL:
Jeremiah Trueman - Breakers
Dillon Boucher - Breakers

With one still playing in the league:
Jeremiah Trueman - Breakers

C'mon Taranaki we want some more from the region make it to the nbl
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Old 05-04-2012, 05:08 AM   #12
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Montreal is hockey first, second, and third when it comes to the sports landscape. Less than two years ago, the NBA made its preseason game return to Montreal for the first time in 20 years. The NBA brought the Toronto Raptors, Canada's NBA Team, and the New York Knicks to town. And over 22,000 people turned out at the Bell Centre (Centre Bell in French) to see the NBA action that was last seen in Montreal at the old Montreal Forum in October 1990 when the Washington Bullets and the Philadelphia 76ERS played on a basketball court that was held over from the 1976 Olympics. Some things have changed in Montreal since including a newer and better venue.

But it did spark discussion about should Montreal support the NBA in the long term. I mean, it would be interesting, but the basketball culture in Quebec as a whole needs to grow further. That means, for example, McGill, Concordia, UQAM, Bishop's, and Laval need to not just succeed in the RSEQ but win nationally in the CIS, which is seemingly hard to accomplish today. There is indeed an appetite for different pro sports growing--we're seeing that with the CFL's Montreal Alouettes and the new MLS Montreal Impact. But as far as NBA basketball is concerned, definitely not right away. But a preseason game and more of them to build the culture more are a start.

The following is a CTV News Montreal story centering on that preseason game that the Raptors won 108-103 with accompanying video.
http://montreal.ctv.ca/servlet/an/lo...MontrealSports
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Old 11-07-2012, 11:39 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by Durbansandshark View Post
If Montreal wants to get into pro basketball again this time around, its best chance lies in the nascent National Basketball League of Canada. Right now, the nearby city-suburb of Laval (population 376,000) is interested in getting a team there as one of the inaugural teams this upcoming season. As it currently stands, Montreal lacks a suitable modern arena in the eyes of the NBL Canada brass that is still medium-sized with decent enough amenities like a TV studio, outside of the too-big Bell Centre. The sport of basketball needs a chance to grow even further there as it got burned too many times on the minor pro level. Perhaps Laval can give it that shot and give the Quebec City Kebs a provincial rival. Its arena, the Colisee de Laval, seats around 4000 with the primary tenant being Quebec junior hockey's Laval Arctic, which is good enough for NBL Canada.
First time ever here I quoted myself.

Well, NBL Canada announced on June 30 that the Quebec City Kebs will relocate down to Laval, a city close to Montreal in a separate island to the west while stating it will stay in the Quebec province. Hopefully, the Kebs will last longer there than any other Montreal basketball franchise.
http://www.oursportscentral.com/serv...es/?id=4435678
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Old 13-08-2012, 12:38 PM   #14
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Its hard enough for the Raps to attract players do you honestly think players will want to go to a city that is freezing cold in the winter, is in Canada and doesn't speak english? I don't think it will work if players don't want to play there and as we have been seeing lately the best players are getting out of the smaller markets.

If Canada deserves a second franchise it should be Vancouver. The 'Nucks owners have expressed interest and if they were the owners it would have a much better chance of success than the Grizz. Oh and people in Van speak English!
Getting players to play in Montreal would not a problem I dont think. Montreal is a stunning and yes very cold city but its also the party capital, food capital, fasion capital of Canada. Its only a very short flight from New York City and Boston. Almost all people in Montreal speak english as well. So your "dont speak english" quote in wrong on so many levels. Its a very bilingual. People from small country towns around qubec are likley not to speak english but for Montreal this is not the case at all.

Vancouver already had a chance and it failed. Lets be honest having another Canadian team on the east side of North America makes alot more sence as well. People from Montreal are sports mad. They have one of the strongest and hands down passionate CFL supporter bases and there new soccerteam has had a very good first year with fan support. Obviously hockey is alays going to be huge.
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Old 14-09-2012, 05:03 AM   #15
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Getting players to play in Montreal would not a problem I dont think. Montreal is a stunning and yes very cold city but its also the party capital, food capital, fasion capital of Canada. Its only a very short flight from New York City and Boston. Almost all people in Montreal speak english as well. So your "dont speak english" quote in wrong on so many levels. Its a very bilingual. People from small country towns around qubec are likley not to speak english but for Montreal this is not the case at all.

Vancouver already had a chance and it failed. Lets be honest having another Canadian team on the east side of North America makes alot more sence as well. People from Montreal are sports mad. They have one of the strongest and hands down passionate CFL supporter bases and there new soccerteam has had a very good first year with fan support. Obviously hockey is alays going to be huge.
Those are some of the key points that I originally brought up in my lengthy post on Montreal earlier here. But French is preferred in Montreal over English in many cases as a way to preserve the French heritage and culture in the Quebec province when it feels overwhelmed by the huge English majority on the national level.

On July 10, the Toronto Raptors announced they and the New York Knicks are both returning to Montreal's Bell Centre for another exhibition game there as part of the first NBA Canada Series with another NBA Canada game at Winnipeg's MTS Centre, home of the NHL's Winnipeg Jets, with Minnesota and Detroit duking it out. I think this is the first time Winnipeg is hosting an NBA game since the first Naismith Cup battle in 1995 between Toronto and Vancouver at the old Winnipeg Arena, the Jets' old home. I can only hope Montrealers would repeat the sold-out attendance in the last game to show that basketball is growing in Quebec with a far-off possibility of more regular Montreal ties with the NBA and interest never wavered.
http://blog.raptors.com/press-releas...canada-series/

In Montreal's suburban city of Laval, the NBL Canada's Kebs are getting themselves settled into their new scenary from Quebec City. There hasn't been much info and developments on them until last month, which I'll send you over to the ABA/PBL/NBL Canada thread. The Laval Kebs are important step for the Montreal-Laval area to develop a love for basketball that's been marginal
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Old 24-10-2012, 06:55 AM   #16
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Montreal's sports fans are hurting somewhat with their beloved and storied NHL's Montreal Canadiens under lockout mode that could possibly cancel the season. So it was a bit of good fortune the NBA had its NBA Canada Series in Montreal at the Bell Centre when Canada's NBA the Toronto Raptors facing again the New York Knicks in Montreal for preseason play.

You know, it would be nice if the NBA conducted do a preseason Canada Series when both Toronto and Vancouver came into the league. Better late than never. I know the NBA had done some preseason games in Canada years before 1995 that helped in its own way to make basketball more accessible to Canadians. One of which took place in Edmonton involved the Philadelphia 76ERS back in 1983, notable (with some trivia coming now) only because Julius Erving was not wearing his usual #6 and had to wear another number--35, if I recall correctly. The Doctor's #6 jersey got lost in the travel.

Another packed crowd like there was 2 years ago filled the Bell Centre with 22,114 and were enthusiastic being more pro-Raptors cheering on Toronto with their hustle and play in its 107-88 win--even getting on the refs. Right now, Toronto is 4-1 in preseason play, which really doesn't mean all that much. Several players on both teams enjoy Montreal a lot; Jason Kidd has family there.

http://mcgilltribune.com/?p=16590
http://www.examiner.com/article/pre-...the-energy-mtl

Montreal game recap
http://www.nba.com/raptors/recap_101912
http://www.montrealgazette.com/sport...205/story.html

Toronto Raptors Dance Pak bring it to Montreal
http://www.montrealgazette.com/sport...125/story.html

Once again, talk abounds over whether Montreal could support its own NBA franchise. Allow me to refine my position over this matter: Probrably not, despite having such a great arena in the Centre Bell to field it and the NBA's global status symbol. Don't get me wrong, Montreal has some really good basketball fans. Quebec's (as a province) basketball culture isn't as strong as that of Toronto's, Hamilton's, Ottawa's, Halifax's, or even Winnipeg's--though Montreal is undoubtably the Quebec basketball epicenter. Slightly less comparable to Vancouver, but Vancouver of course had the NBA and even the western Canadian cities like Edmonton and Calgary have it bigger more because of Canada West. I do think Vancouver will be first in line for a NBA return when that happens before Montreal gets a franchise when it comes to Canada; there it would more like be an afterthought and won't sell all of their home games. It would have to compete with the Habs for the winter. As indicated earlier here, it's more of an arts and culture city with strong support for ice hockey (of course), gridiron American football (the Canadian version), soccer, F1 racing, and other winter sports like short track. Sports fans all know what happened to the baseball Expos. However, what the Raptors can to further build its "Canada's NBA Team" moniker is perhaps play a regular season home game or two there to generate greater interest in Montreal and can attract Canadian basketball fans not just in Quebec but also Atlantic Canada like Nova Scotia and develop a following through it (the Raptors had their training camp in Halifax, Nova Scotia, home of the NBL Canada's Rainmen). Surely some Montreal basketball movers and shakers are asking all this right now.

http://www.tsn.ca/nba/story/?id=407904

Chris Mullin goes on Sportsnet Radio The FAN 590 AM Toronto's Prime Time Sports and has some interesting things about Montreal's NBA prospects, among other things.
http://www.sportsnet.ca/basketball/2...real_nba_team/

Toronto Raptors spending time and giving back in Montreal
http://blog.raptors.com/photos-from-...t-to-montreal/

1990 was not the first time the NBA came to Montreal and the hallowed Forum (now an entertainment multiplex)....but I didn't know until now the NDCELE played there in the preseason 40 years ago. If it perhaps weren't for the Quiet Revolution about to start back then in that decade, it might've had gone as predicted.
http://www.montrealgazette.com/sport...973/story.html

UPDATE: Video recap of the said Montreal game--http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5ugIBscTFw and
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sHz2hOqurbY

Fan camera's footage of the Raptors-Knicks game from the ends for 9 minutes. You'll notice the PA announcer was calling things bilingually with this being Montreal. Plus there's a smattering of both French and English, mostly a mixture, from some of the fans videotaping this.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RKZkjd8t-Gs

I'm wearing a red Nike Canada Basketball practice T-shirt as I write all this.
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Old 30-10-2012, 08:31 AM   #17
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Things get even more interesting for Montreal pro basketball. Won't get an NBA franchise for sure. Nearby Laval was planning to get started on the upcoming 2012-13 NBL Canada season as the new home for the Quebec City Kebs. But that franchise soon realized it has serious problems. The Kebs had the league operate it, and now it's announced Friday the Kebs will be shut down with a new ownership to take an expansion franchise in Montreal with a new name for the team and players to give it a fresh look.

Timing of this change so close to the NBL Canada's second season's start makes it look bad. But NBL Canada had to do something about this. More about this later back on the ABA Updates (And Now The PBL--and should be included--and NBL Canada) very soon.
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Old 09-04-2013, 10:06 AM   #18
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Enough of that unmitigated disaster that was the Montreal Jazz in NBL Canada now that the season is done for them at a very sorry 2-38! You can read all about that at the ABA Updates (And Now The PBL and should be And NBL Canada, Too). If things don't rectified soon there, Montreal's attraction to pro basketball in its midsts will deteriorate even further.

Bleacher Report devised an NBA expansion proposal with 6 extra teams, one in each division. Interestingly, writer Adam Fromel selected Montreal, and not Vancouver, the only other logical choice, as the second Canadian NBA city with the hypothetical name Royals (Montreal is a combination of Mont Real in Latin--Mount Royal, a three-peaked hill at the center of the city). Why Montreal? Closer proximity towards many American NBA cities.
http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1...expansion-plan
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Old 26-06-2013, 08:41 AM   #19
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The Minnesota Timberwolves and the Boston Celtics will pay an exhibition game visit to Montreal on October 20 at the Bell Centre for the NBA Canada Games
http://www.nba.com/timberwolves/news...-canada-series
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Old 04-10-2013, 05:44 AM   #20
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Further proof that there is some basketball culture in Montreal: 11 out of the 13 2013-14 NCAA D1 men's basketball players from Quebec, surprisingly the second-largest province sending out NCAA talent, comes from Montreal. Like Khem Birch, Laurent Rivard, and Yohanney Dalembert.
http://northpolehoops.com/2013/10/02...ns-basketball/

Not counting the Montreal-based RSEQ schools on this.

Without question Montreal has put on a fabulous presentation as NBA preseason hosts at the Bell Centre whenever it has it and will continue to do so later this month when Boston and Minnesota come to town. Outside of hockey, soccer, football, baseball when the Expos were there (miss 'em), short track, and auto racing, Montreal, like Miami, is more like an event city where people like to go to see what's happening. Everybody turns out. Going to be interesting when the NBA becomes more of a daily committment for multiple seasons instead of one-off preseason games. Montreal residents can get very finicky, even more so than Toronto, when people there can dump something when it doesn't have the charm, appeal, or cool factor as it previously did that attracted to it.

Moving an established franchise that can be built into eventual playoff-impacting team (like Seattle to Oklahoma City) could work in Montreal. But an expansion team would be different, not sure if potential fans might grow tired after the first season honeymoon period following strings of constant losses during the first few years. Would NBA prices fly there? Also, the Montreal fanbase can be supportive but can strike me as critical and have little patience for those who phone it in. Like perhaps second stringers who could have a hard time there.

Even if it proves to have strong fan and fianncial support, it might as well exist in a void somewhat to American NBA fans on a business level and NBA's US and English Canada's broadcasting. Western Canadians would less of an incentive to follow a Montreal NBA team with both NBA Canadian franchises located in Eastern Canada unless Vancouver reappears in the NBA. No matter how a hypothetical Montreal franchise would market itself, it would still be the little brother to New York, Toronto, and Boston in NBA terms. Canadians there outside of Toronto and maybe still Vancouver apparently will sellout when there's no required committment beyond one preseason game. Years after NBL Canada strongly establishes itself nationwide and becomes a success, we'll see a stronger Canadian pro basketball culture seeing Canadian matchup with second-rate (to NBA level) players.
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Old 09-10-2013, 11:09 AM   #21
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Latest local article pondering Montreal's capabilities to field an NBA franchise with the Boston-Minnesota preseason game at the Bell Centre looming. Agree on several points: A) Montreal is not a developed basketball city--yet B) Someone deep pocketed must show committment for the long haul for an NBA expansion franchise fee is high, if not become an investor to a highly unlikely rival league C) Basketball is growing in Quebec (Montreal in particular) but still not quite bigtime and fertile and producing an abundant amount of players like Ontario D) Hope the NBL Canada's Montreal Jazz return to develop Montreal's basketball culture and attract fans further--and be competitive and E) If there was a bonafide, can't miss young basketball star Montreal could produce like Toronto's Andrew Wiggins in the near future, that will get people there talking about hoops. (possible)
http://thelinknewspaper.ca/article/4...M9MxNk.twitter

Assuming if Montreal got an NBA franchise in the future, would we significantly see players on the roster not just native Canadians but also players from France, Belguim, and those from French-speaking African nations like Senegal, Morocco, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Algeria, Central African Republic, Congo (both ones), and Tunisia (like we see in the MLS' Montreal Impact soccer team) and even Italians, Spanish, and Greeks, who would have no issues as opposed to Americans in playing there? I would think so. For it would bring a sense of Europe and feel like home in some ways while being in North America.
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Old 18-10-2013, 08:28 AM   #22
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As we await the latest installment of Montreal's preseason NBA basketball this weekend, we can take a fuller look back at Montreal's first attempt at pro basketball--the Montreal Dragons from the original Canadian NBL.

Long-suffering Montreal basketball fans couldn't believe their city was going to have some pro basketball. And the Dragons were businessman Francois Tremblay's brainchild and established against long odds even with the WBL collapsing. Were the WBL not in serious trouble, Montreal (and Cape Breton) surely would be admitted for the next season slated for 1994. The professional basketball wave sweeping through North America during the 1980s and 1990s--even Mexico City was thought to be up in line for the NBA--somehow missed predominately French-speaking Quebec, even with the 1990 exhibtion NBA game prompting a dry spell. As far back as 1990, not one of Quebec's 4 French-speaking universities (UQAM, Universite de Montreal, Laval University, Sherbrooke Universite) had intercollegiate basketball program, which could explain one reason why the French community hasn't quite readily embraced basketball locally with UQAM and Laval currently having them was has been somewhat successful but not consistently.

With cautious excitement, 4000 fans packed the Verdun Auditorium in Montreal's working class neighborhood for the May 7, 1993 home opener against the Halifax Windjammers. The Dragons were coached by California native Otis Haley, a former state high school high jump champ who would went on to coach five other Canadian based minor pro basketball teams before passing away in 2010 due to kidney failure 11 days after becoming Maryland GreenHawks coach in the PBL. The Dragons had a supremely talented team on paper that included George Ackles from the 1990 Nevada-Las Vegas Runnin' Rebels championship team and successful local stars Wayne Yearwood and Dwight Walton brought in to pique local interest. Problem was, the Dragon fans witnessed the double whammy of seeing their beloved Montreal stars riding pine all game and the Dragons losing to Halifax 117-110. Setting the stage of a sharp, quick decline for the poor Dragons fans, who only just getting acquainted with them. Tremblay's team was reported by the Montreal Gazette as on the serious verge of financial collapse two weeks after opening night (later echoing the PBL's Montreal Sasquatch). Montreal folded without completing their debut season with 17 games as a debt-ridden franchise--and setting the stage for an embarassing decline to the NBL the next year and an punishing string of short-lived Montreal pro basketball teams with more failure and no success.
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Old 22-10-2013, 04:10 AM   #23
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Yeah, the Montreal pro basketball experience starting with the Dragons has made prospective pro basketball fans and the local basketball community there jaded over the years.

But Montreal's basketball community does like the NBA! Again. 20,152 electrified fans packed the Bell Centre to witness Minnesota's Kevin Love score 21 points and grab 8 rebounds in a 104-89 Timberwolves' victory over the Boston Celtics. Toronto-born Kelly Olynyk, formerly of Gonzaga, scored 4 points in his 19 minutes of playing for the Celtics. The Timberwolves even rented the legendary Montreal Canadiens' locker room.
http://www.ctvnews.ca/sports/kevin-l...real-1.1505818
http://www.nba.com/timberwolves/news...nergy-montreal

Minnesota's Ronny Turiaf from the French speaking overseas Carribean island territory of Guadeloupe and Gorgui Dieng, who does have a French West African background were thrilled to be in Montreal
http://www.nba.com/timberwolves/news...phere-montreal
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Old 22-10-2013, 07:59 AM   #24
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amazing thread.
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Old 22-10-2013, 10:19 PM   #25
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Related post on NBA.com about how Canada and Australia are poised to dominate world hoops in the coming years.

Included this interest tidbit:

Quote:
Participation is high, Australia ranks No. 1 in subscribers to NBA League Pass International and in NBAstore.comís international revenue, and the country certainly has the sports facilities and culture befitting a possible preseason destination.
Hail hail Australian hoops fans!

http://hangtime.blogs.nba.com/2013/1...-nba-close-up/
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