COLORADO SPRINGS – (Staff Report from Official News Release) – In a step towards its quest to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, USA Basketball will hold the 2019 USA 3×3 National Championships for men and women outdoors at the Downtown Las Vegas Events Center, located in the heart of downtown Las Vegas. The tournament will be played May 3-4.
“This is a giant step for the USA Basketball 3×3 program,” said Jim Tooley, USA Basketball chief executive officer. “The level of competition at the USA Basketball Men’s and Women’s 3×3 National Championships has grown each year since we first launched in 2012, and we felt it was time to bring the tournament to a larger stage. USA Basketball’s successful hosting of prior events in Las Vegas helped make the decision to hold the 2019 USA 3×3 Nationals in the Downtown Las Vegas Events Center an easy one. Fans of basketball will enjoy watching what we think will be an incredibly exciting weekend of competition.”
The USA 3×3 Nationals, an event that is free and open to the public, will tip-off the afternoon of Friday, May 3 with preliminary round games. The preliminary round will continue the morning of May 4 and, after teams are seeded based on preliminary records, the knockout rounds will begin Saturday afternoon.
The USA 3×3 Nationals will feature up to 16 men’s and 20 women’s teams competing for their respective 3×3 national titles. In addition to the lure of a national championship, the event also will serve as the 2019 USA Basketball Men’s and Women’s 3×3 National Team trials, as all competing athletes will be in consideration for selection to the 2019 USA Men’s 3×3 World Cup Team and the men’s and women’s 2019 U.S. Pan American Games 3×3 Basketball Teams.
Olympic fans will see the new basketball discipline with the inclusion of 3×3 in 2020. The exciting and fast-paced game was unveiled in international competition at the 2010 Youth Olympic Games and has since become a fan favorite at FIBA 3×3 World Cup events. Played on a half court with a 10-minute clock, and a 12-second shot clock, the first team to 21 points, or the team in the lead at the end of regulation, is the winner. The non-stop action of 3×3 will ensure it is one of the hottest tickets in Tokyo, and fans in Las Vegas will get an early taste of that excitement during the USA Basketball 3×3 Nationals.
Participating teams will have earned their spots in the 2019 USA Basketball 3×3 National Championships either through a 3×3 qualifying tournament or via an invitation from USA Basketball.
Held annually since 2012, this year marks the eighth edition of the USA Basketball 3×3 National Championships, and the first time the nationals will be held outside of Colorado Springs, Colorado.
A team from Arizona, Desert Pro-Am, captured the inaugural USA Basketball Men’s 3×3 National Championship and earned the right to represent the USA at the 2012 FIBA 3×3 World Cup. Since then, Denver (2013, 2015), Ariel (2014, 2017, 2018) and 3-Ball Premier (2016) have earned the championship trophy. Teams in 2012, 2014, 2016 and 2017 went on to represent USA Basketball at the FIBA 3×3 World Cup, where the 2016 squad won the silver medal.