Minneapolis-St. Paul – The Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx Basketball Academy announced it will host the True North Qualifiers, a series of five local qualifying competitions across the Upper Midwest for a chance to reach the Jr. NBA Global Championship, a youth basketball tournament for the top 13- and 14-year-old boys and girls teams from around the world.
The True North Qualifiers are open to 13- and 14-year old boys and girls teams and will be played this spring in Des Moines, Fargo-Moorhead, Lakeville, Sioux Falls, and St. Michael. The winning teams from each tournament will advance to the Jr. NBA Global Championship Central Regional Tournament in Council Bluffs, Iowa in May, which will see the winning teams receive all-expenses-paid trips to compete against the top youth teams from around the world in the second Jr. NBA Global Championship at ESPN Wide World of Sports near Orlando, Fla. in August.
The Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx Basketball Academy will host the True North Qualifiers in Fargo-Moorhead (March 30-31), Des Moines (April 6-7), Sioux Falls (April 13-14), St. Michael (April 27-28) and Lakeville (May 4-5).
“We are thrilled to give our fans and youth teams an opportunity to compete for the chance to get one step closer to the Jr. NBA Global Championship. To bring this tournament to not one, but five cities is a huge opportunity to showcase the talent in the Upper Midwest,” said John Thomas, Vice President of Basketball Development at the Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx. “These teams have immense drive, determination and a love of the game that we want to cultivate, and that’s a big part of our mission at our Basketball Academy.”
Breakdown Sports USA, a Twin Cities-based company servicing youth sports since 2001, will function as the True North Qualifiers tournament operator. “Youth sports is the center of everything we do. To partner with the top basketball organization in the Upper Midwest and one that has a strong commitment to growing youth basketball brings tremendous opportunities for us,” said Justin Hegna, Founder of Breakdown Sports USA. “With 2019 being the first year of the True North Qualifiers we are excited to help build what we think will be a huge piece of youth basketball.”
The Timberwolves and Lynx are the only team in the NBA and WNBA to host multiple cities for qualifying tournaments. Tournament details and registration can be found at https://www.timberwolvesbasketballacademy.com/jrnba. Registration is limited to 16 boys teams and 16 girls teams per tournament.
The Jr. NBA Global Championship in Orlando will feature boys and girls divisions, separated into U.S. and international brackets that begin with round-robin play and continue with single-elimination competition. In addition to the on-court competition, all 32 teams (16 boys teams and 16 girls teams) will participate in activities designed to provide the players with development opportunities and memorable experiences off the court.