Jamaica-born NBA player Kofi Cockburn has praised the organisation of the P.H.A.S.E.1 Academy Elite 1 Caribbean Basketball Summer League (E1CBL) which, over the weekend, hosted its first games of its first season at the National Arena in Kingston.
The event, considered the Caribbean’s biggest basketball entertainment event of the season, is hosted in
collaboration with the Jamaica Basketball Association.
The competition got under way on Saturday (August 14) with two games and concludes on August 20.
“My favourite part is just watching the guys that I know,” said 22-year-old Cockburn, a seven-foot center signed to the Utah Jazz, who pointed out after Saturday’s games that he was seeing a number of players he has gone up against in the US.
According to Cockburn, the competition has been better than he had expected and that he would do his part to help, for example, in building better development structures in the island going forward.
The event kicked off on Saturday with an opening ceremony at 5 pm during which players from Elite 1 Rivers, Elite 1 Horizon, Elite 1 Waves, and Elite 1 Storm participated.
The first game started at 6:00 pm and was between Elite 1 Rivers and Elite 1 Horizon.
Elite 1 Horizon scored a massive 109 to win against the Elite 1 Rivers who scored 64 points. American point guard Bobby Gray was named player of the game.
The second game of the evening kicked off at 8:00 pm and was between Elite 1 Waves and Elite 1 Storm. The Elite 1 Storm bested the Elite 1 Waves and won the game with 81 points to the Waves 64.
Jamaican point guard Joel Bailey was the player of that game.
Each team comprises of top-tier professional players from Jamaica, Barbados, Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Ghana.
The competition continued on Sunday (August 14) and will now get back under way on Wednesday (August 17) at 4:00 pm. It will culminate with a celebrity game, third-place playoff and the championship game starting at 4:00 pm on August 20.
Wayne Dawkins, CEO and founder of P.H.A.S.E.1 Academy, has said the E1CBL is the consummate family event, and has invited people to come out and witness basketball “like they have never seen it before in Jamaica”.
Added Dawkins: “We are going to be bringing them a professional basketball atmosphere that a lot of people only see on TV. We will have high flying basketball players, dancers, music and entertainment
topped off by an energetic crowd. It’s the ultimate family entertainment event.”
Tickets for the event are available at Emkay Sports at 11 Oxford Terrace in Kingston, and cost $200 for students, $500 for bleachers, and $1,000 for VIP. Persons can also reach out to the E1CBL via Instagram @e1caribbeanbasketballleague to purchase tickets.
The E1CBL is sponsored by the Jamaica Basketball Association, Elite 1 Recruiting Platform, Ribbiz, TurboStats, Global Pipeline Agency, KFC, Phoenix Health Complex and Vision Centre, Athletic Fusion, Suretime Medical, Habliborange, Herbs, Facey Pharmaceuticals, and Confectionery and Snacks Jamaica.
P.H.A.S.E.1 Academy was founded Dawkins, a Jamaican Canadian and former basketball player.
For the past 25 years, P.H.A.S.E.1 has been organising and hosting basketball leagues and tournaments in Canada and the US and Africa. These events have contributed substantially to the growth of the youth sports industry.
P.H.A.S.E.1 academies are located in Canada, Jamaica, the United States, and Africa. Our student-athletes have access to expert staff, elite training methods, top competition, and exposure to greater opportunities.
Over the years, we have assisted in the development of more than 500 athletes in receiving scholarships to study and play post-secondary sports and move on to become professional athletes.