Recap: Halifax vs. Montreal… CANCELED

So yeah… the game tonight was canceled.  It was pretty much the worst road game to be canceled since a lot of Halifax fans made the trip up to see the game.

Hopefully someone who was there can clarify why it was canceled.  What a nightmare.

edit:

Here is the official statement by Halifax:

HALIFAX@MONTREAL – GAME CANCELLED

02/28/2009 8:23 AM


Here is the official statement by the PBL:

Premier Basketball League Montreal Statement

Chicago IL…The PBL was forced to cancel the games scheduled in Montreal this weekend.

“Unfortunately the arena management group in charge of the arena that had been secured for the weekend games, informed the ownership group in Montreal on Friday that the venue could not be used,” said Thomas Doyle PBL CEO. “To the credit of the Montreal organization they attempted to find a replacement venue, however the venue available did not comply with the required PBL standards and could not be used. We appreciate the cooperation of all of the organizations involved in this weekends games efforts to work with the league and the understanding that PBL requirements must be met to play.”

Despite it’s title it’s not as profound as the Port Huron Statement, but more to the point it also doesn’t clarify if that game was a win for Halifax or not.  Both games in Montreal this weekend have simply been removed from the schedule and Halifax were not given a win for last night’s non-game.  This could have huge consequences as Wilmington are leading the wildcard race and Halifax are mathematically in the running.  I am willing to bet that the management of the Vermont Frost Heaves will be adamant that the games should not count as wins when it comes time for the weekly PBL conference call.

Halifax Rainmen Owner Andre Levingston contacted the league prior to last night’s game as to the poor conditions at the facility booked to host the game. Levingston felt the court was unsafe for the team to play on.

The league agreed and cancelled the game. The Rainmen travel to Quebec tonight to take on the Kebs.

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33 thoughts on “Recap: Halifax vs. Montreal… CANCELED

  1. Did it have 8 foot nets or was it super short or something? The Vermont court is smaller than regulation. It will be interesting to see how the league spins this one. Thanks for the info, though!

  2. it’s a high school gym, so i think it had something to do with the lines, but i’m not positive… i’d also be interested to know how the issue came up in the first place – did Halifax complain about the court? did the refs?
    (by the time i arrived 30 minutes before tipoff, the game was already cancelled, so i didn’t see/hear what triggered this, but since it’s not our usual court i’m not sure how the league would know what it looked like without SOMEONE complaining…)

  3. Montreal is just so unorganized. The game was supposed to start at 7:00 at one location. Then we find out the location has been moved and now starts at 9pm. So half the fans were confused and showed up at the wrong location.

    THEN

    Halifax was advised that they were not keeping stats for the game.

    THEN

    Montreal team did not have anyone to ice/wrap some of the players. No physiotherapist or anything.

    HORRIBLE EXPERIENCE

    They could have at least put signs up to say the game was cancelled, instead of having the fans wandering around the building. Not to mention the ice storm happening outside. I guess I can’t blame the weather on the team 😦

  4. Good grief.

    Mtlbballgirl: thank you for the info, madam.

    Next question:

    Had a PBL game already been played on this court this season?

  5. no – Montreal had played all other games at the Centre Pierre-Charbonneau, which is where we were supposed to play this weekend as well, up until Wednesday

    Wednesday some problems arose (I don’t know what, and probably couldn’t say if I did), and Thursday the games were moved to the other gym – which, I’ve heard, was tough to find with all the university, AA and AAA playoffs games going on this weekend

    oh, and I’ve just heard tonight’s Montreal-Wilmington game is cancelled as well

  6. What I heard:

    Levingston was the one who really stepped up and said this is not acceptable. No trainer, no stats, not even any bleachers for fans to sit (not that there were going to be any).

  7. there were some fans, including a busload from Halifax who made the trip for nothing

    if it had been just stats, that would have been taken care of – a staff member went out to find internet and get the Crez program… it just so happened the internet he found was not high-speed and he didn’t get back until just before scheduled tipoff, by which point the game had already been called

    the Montreal Royal played their first playoff game last season in a similar gym (not that school, another one) – with a trainer, mind you, but the stats were done by hand on a printed sheet – and the visiting team didn’t complain

    yes, the lack of trainer was a problem

    it just seems a shame for everyone to travel all this way just to have the game called

  8. Yeah, I was exaggerating with the no fans thing, but there would not have been many due to the last-minute venue change. It would have been hard enough to find out for any fan. But there was literally four benches (like the ones you sit on in gym class), so two of those would be for the players and that would leave seating for about 10-20 fans.

    It’s just too bad for everyone, Montreal fans, Halifax fans and players.

  9. According to the Rainmen site, “The league agreed and cancelled the game. This will be a win for Halifax.”

    According to the PBL website, the Rainmen are still 8-7 and last night’s Montreal game was removed from the schedule. (Montreal’s schedule also only has a total of 16 games on it right now, too).

    This is really pathetic. If it doesn’t count as a W and there’s no make-up, we’re pretty much out of contention for the wild card.

  10. give me a break

    Halifax disagreed with an ABA decision last season, left the league before the playoffs

    now you might not be happy with the turnout of a decision made by Levingston, and you want to leave the PBL…

    seems to me you’re running out of leagues to leave

    MAYBE Halifax should have just played the game last night, and taken what would have almost certainly been an easy win over the 7 Montreal players there, who hadn’t practiced together

    That’s what Wilmington wanted to do.

    There were problems, yes. But a Halifax player told me they had enough guys to play even without a trainer there to tape them up.

    The court wasn’t “unsafe”. That was just the only way Levingston could have the league cancel a game he thought was beneath him, and have ANY CHANCE of it count as a Montreal forfeit instead of a Halifax forfeit.

  11. Without knowing the exact situation (I assume the walls were super close to the lines or something like that but Joe or anyone else who was there can give us a better idea) I think Halifax should have just played the game. They would have thrashed Montreal and the optics of having a road game canceled are absolutely terrible. This is the sort of PR damage you want to desperately avoid in Halifax.

    That said, if the PBL canceled the game (even if it was after Andre complained) and said it would be a forfeit in Halifax’s favour then the PBL needs to come through on that.

    This is a dumb situation and I blame pretty much everyone involved other than the players who just want to play and the fans who just want to watch games.

  12. There’s no question that if the PBL said it would be a win for Halifax, it should be a win for Halifax. I’m just questioning why the game was cancelled at all, and whether the league actually DID say it would be a win for Halifax.

    Halifax says the league said it was a forfeit in Halifax’s favour… last I spoke to the Montreal owner, the league told HIM it was a cancelled/postponed game, neither a win nor loss for either team, to be rescheduled if there was a spot in the schedule.

    The walls weren’t super close to the lines… close but I wouldn’t say dangerously so. The Montreal Royal played their first round of the playoffs in a very similarly sized gym last season (admittedly, not that exact gym) and neither team, nor the refs, ever suggested the court was in any way unsafe.

    There were no holes, no loose boards, the floor wasn’t warped.

    And at least 1 Halifax player said that despite the gym, he felt the game should have been played (given that the stats issue was taken care of, which it was, before scheduled tipoff but after the game was cancelled)

  13. Btw i agree with Andre for refusing to let our Rainmen play in “slumdog” conditions. Gotta have standards, gotta draw the line somewhere. We’re (PBL) trying to come up as a reputable and professional league and the conditions that mtlbballgirl described above sounded NOT reputable and NOT professional at all!! Totally disorganized. Sounded like a flat out amateur, YMCA Friday night scrub run! I just feel really bad for the Rainmen fans.

  14. Baller – I agree that it sounds totally unprofessional (and wouldn’t even fly in a lot of amateur leagues) but had they just played the game (maybe after making arrangements to get a physio in there somehow) no one would have ever known about how unprofessional it was and Levingston could complain to the league in private and get things dealt with. A few dozen Halifax fans would be pissed, but Andre could have come up with some way to bribe their silence. (Free tickets to the home games? Free merch? discounted season tickets next year? I don’t know…) As it stands this is going to be the Monday story in both papers, Chris Cochrane is going to write an opinion piece in the Herald which will question if the PBL is actually a step up from the ABA and casual fans will look at this, roll their eyes and not buy tickets because they think they’re watching a glorified amateur league.

    At a certain point you just need to sweep stuff under the rug to save face on the PR front.

    I blame (in order) the PBL for letting Montreal continue like this, Team Montreal for being this disorganized to the point where this whole mess could happen (moving to a high school gym and a 9pm tip off time the night before is absolutely insane to begin with) and Halifax for allowing the PR shitstorm which is surely coming to gain steam.

  15. It will be interesting to see if the PBL gives Halifax a win. If this is the case, will they give all the teams wins that are scheduled to play them between and the end of the season?

  16. I would assume that they would only give Halifax and Wilmington the wins since those are the only games canceled. This isn’t their normal home court we’re talking about so there’s no reason to give everyone the forfeit.

  17. I think that they should give Halifax and Wilmington wins. If the Heaves complain, tough. I am sure that if this situation rises in 2 weeks and the Heaves game in Montreal is cancelled, they’d be wanting it to be credited as a win. For those of you who don’t know, I am a Frost Heaves fan, but I will speak out against them when needed and warrented.

  18. Who knows if they will actually complain…. I put that in because I am in a wretched mood. They’re absolutely going to beat Montreal anyway – which is the other thing that makes Halifax refusing to play even worse. Even if they get the forfeit (which I assume is either a 1-0 win or a 10-0 win) they would have been better off just pounding Montreal and giving McNeal and Dandridge some much needed playing time.

  19. Did the Keb game get cancelled as well? The PBL site now says “there are no games being played today” where once it listed the HR-Kebs game.

  20. @Rigs: the PBL site pretty much always says that after the days games are in progress, it only lists the daily schedule before the games have started… for some odd reason

  21. DAMN SHAME….!!!on behalf of me and my teammates we wanted to play..oh yeah also my coach and gm..lol!!! but it would not have been possible due to halifax not playing !!!!?!?!?!?!?! ITS COOL.. We just beat augusta on sunday…again(4th time) by alot..lol

    Side note I did enjoy hanging out with my brothers eric and brian and seeing Mr.Kempton

  22. Likewise Kadiri, it was good to see you and I am glad that you are doing well and playing so close to your home. Good luck in winning your division; I hope we get to play your team in the playoffs.

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