ABA National Champions Jacksonville Giants - 5 States - 6 Games - in 11 Days | Community Spirit
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Coming off the team’s biggest regular season victory this past Saturday night against the South Carolina Warriors in an ABA Championship rematch, the #1 ranked Jacksonville Giants (5-0) are back at it as they begin an eleven day road trip. The Giants will face several of the ABA's top teams during the trip, including rival Gulf Coast Flash tonight in Gulfport, MS.
The Flash ended the Giants first season (2010-2011) when they defeated the Giants by just two points in the Final Four Championship semi-finals match-up. The Giants avenged their loss on a 3-point buzzer beater in their Season Two home opener against the Flash. Then, it was the Giants who ended the Flash’s season this past year in the playoffs. The Flash (5-1) is ranked #8 in the ABA and tonight’s winner takes the lead in the South Atlantic Division. “They [the Flash] are well coached and always give us a fight. It’s tough playing this level of competition after what we went through Saturday night, but it’s what the fans and media want, so we're doing our part,” said Head Coach Kevin Waters.
The ABA National Champions Jacksonville Giants will also face the Texas Fuel, Dallas Vandals and Memphis Reign, all playoff contenders in Season 2 (2011-2012), on this road trip. The Dallas Vandals also reached the 2011-2012 ABA Final Four.
The six game road trip includes stops in Gulf Port, Mississippi; New Orleans, Louisiana; Houston, Texas; San Antonio, Texas; Dallas Texas; Memphis Tennessee; and ends in Birmingham Alabama against the new ABA franchise, The Birmingham Blitz.
“This is part of expanding our pro basketball effort in Jacksonville,” said Giants owner, Ron Sholes. “We need more than just regional opponents coming to Jacksonville, and we’re expecting to develop some rivalries with these teams.” During the Giants first season the team’s schedule included a 3-game series in California and the San Francisco Rumble came to Jacksonville as well.
“Whenever and wherever we travel, opposing teams see how we do business. They see professionalism from our players, coaches and organization,” says Waters. “It certainly helps us expand our scouting ability.”
The Giants have signed several key players that have played against them previously, namely this season's leading scorer, Anthony Jackson. The Giants won't return home to Jacksonville until Dec. 20th, and will play their next home game against Atlanta’s (Fellowship) Warriors, on Friday, Dec. 21 at Veterans Arena.
Please check our Facebook for updates on the team and ABA. For more information on the Jacksonville Giants, please visit our website at http://WWW.JACKSONVILLEGIANTS.COM or call the Giants ticketing office at (904) 355-6531.
Original story by: Nina Perkins Graphic Image: Jack Wilson
Photos by: http://WWW.MILLERONSPORTS.COM B.L.Miller