ESPN Announces Commentator Teams for The Basketball Tournament


ESPN Announces Commentator Teams for The Basketball Tournament

ESPN networks to carry games from Chicago (July 23 and 25) and New York (Aug. 1 and 2)

ESPN commentator teams have been announced for The Basketball Tournament (TBT), the single-elimination, five-on-five, winner-take-all, open-application tournament with a $1 million prize that began July 10 and continues this weekend. TBT games will be televised July 23 and 25 on ESPNU and August 1-2 on ESPN.

The Notre Dame Alumni Play-In Game vs. a TBD opponent from DePaul’s McGrath-Phillips Arena in Chicago on July 23 will have Notre Dame play-by-play voice Jack Nolan and current Fighting Irish men’s basketball coach Mike Brey calling the action on ESPNU.

The quarterfinals, July 25, from DePaul will have play-by-play voice Adam Amin, analyst Dan Dakich and reporter Lindsay McCormick on ESPNU, while the Semifinals and Championship games on Aug. 1 and 2 from Fordham University’s Rose Hill Gym will have play-by-play Mark Jones, analyst Fran Fraschilla and ESPN Basketball Insider Jeff Goodman live on ESPN.

The 97-team field has included no fewer than 125 players who have played in either the NBA or the NBA D-League, and over 500 with professional experience. Among the notable names and teams still in the event are “LAUNFD,” recent three-peat Drew League Champions, with former NBA players Dijon Thompson, Ike Diogu and Bobby Brown.  The defending champion Notre Dame Fighting Alumni, led by former All BIG EAST Tim Abromitis, Ben Hansbrough, and Torin Francis, among others, have a bye and will participate automatically in the July 23-25 Super 17.

The Chicago region begins July 17 and will have SLAM, with a cadre of top Americans overseas professionals, including former UConn Huskies player Josh Boone and Florida Gators Matt Walsh and Erik Murphy, and the Sconnie Legends, a group of dads from Wisconsin who happen to be pretty good at basketball, too. Both teams play Friday, July 17.

The Northeast region from Philadelphia University begins July 17 and is led by Boeheim’s Army, a team of Syracuse alums (with a few others along with Big Apple Basketball, featuring Smush Parker and former Kansas NCAA Champion Russell Robinson. “City of Gods” features former NBA players Michael Sweetney and DerMarr Johnson.

The ESPN telecasts will be in addition to the live streaming being provided at for all the early round games, which opened July 10 with regionals in Atlanta (Clayton State University) and Los Angeles (Cal State- LA). Nick Gryniewicz, a central Florida radio host, currently heard on ESPN Orlando, and Mike Ridaught, the voice of the University of North Florida Ospreys, are providing the calls for all live streaming games.

317 teams applied to make the 97-team field, with each team consisting of a General Manager (GM), at least seven players, and 100+ fan votes. All players must be 18 or older and all games will be played under college rules with two 18-minute halves.


Conceived by CEO Jonathan Mugar as the ultimate opportunity for fans, athletes and social media mavens to create teams and then participate in a high-stakes, professionally run and organized sporting event, The Basketball Tournament is a winner-take-all, single elimination, open competition for players 18 years of age or older.  In its first season, The Basketball Tournament drew over 100 team entries from around the country with 32 teams ultimately making the field.  Participants ranged from professional players and recent college talent to local legends and pickup basketball stars.  An overwhelming success in its launch year, the event is expanding nationwide in 2015, and doubling its prize. Among the advisors for the event are sports industry veterans Tony Ponturo of Ponturo Management Group, Andy Dolich of Dolich Consulting, and Len DeLuca of Len DeLuca & Associates, LLC. For more details visit


Bill Hofheimer

I oversee ESPN’s College Sports PR, while also working on ESPN soccer, Around the Horn, PTI and more. Previously oversaw communications for ESPN's Monday Night Football and NFL studio shows.
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