Friday, December 6, 2013

Former Rebels Earn International Opportunities

 
Following a successful 2013 Florida Basketball Association campaign, several players who competed for the Tampa Bay Rebels have garnered opportunities to compete in various international leagues. Two former Rebels are currently competing in the National Basketball League of Canada, the top league in the country. The NBL has been gaining respect from the international community as it features talented players with international backgrounds throughout the league.  

Former Rebels’ center and University of Connecticut product Charles Okwandu signed with the Mississauga Power of the National Basketball League of Canada on November 16th. On the same day he was signed, Okwandu played in his first game. Through the first 3 games of the season, Okwandu has averaged 4 points and 1.3 rebounds while shooting 60% from the field, and has increased his points and rebounds in every game he has played.

Joining Okwandu north of the border is former Rebels’ point guard and Butler University product Shawn Vanzant, who was selected with the 9th pick of the first round in the 2013 NBL draft by the Island Storm. Vanzant has averaged 10.6 points, 1.9 assists, and 1.3 rebounds through the first 10 games of the season.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Tryout Information Coming Soon

Coming off of their second straight appearance in the Florida Basketball Association championship game, the Tampa Bay Rebels are beginning their search for talented players to compete in the 2014 FBA season.  In their first two years as part of the FBA, the Rebels have compiled a 23-4 record, winning the league championship in 2012, and narrowly missing out on a second straight championship when a last-second shot fell short in the 2013 championship game.

Please visit www.tampabayrebels.com for additional information on upcoming tryouts.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

The FBA Keeps Growing

Entering their third year of operations, the Florida Basketball Association is unfolding their business plan as determined by current team owners and Commissioner Greg Kite. The FBA has several elements that make the league unique thus far. The highlight of the FBA is the unity and commitment shown by every team owner to make this ambitious project work. The unity and commitment shown by the owners has resulted in the league having every game (more than fifty games in total) played at the time and place originally scheduled, with no cancellations or rescheduling for each of the league’s first two seasons. This simple fact demonstrates that the FBA has the stability that every new business needs to grow. The level of competition exceeds what is found at the college level throughout the state, and fans are quickly recognizing that as evidenced by the 2013 championship game, which was decided by just two points in the final three seconds of regulation.

Many young and existing leagues focus on adding teams at a fast pace. This approach has proven to create organizational and budgetary problems for most teams. In the FBA, new teams are required to fill out an application and commit to basic standards of operation. Team owners then hold a voting session to determine if the application is approved. Over its first two years of existence, the FBA rejected memberships from multiple markets throughout the state of Florida because the potential franchises could not meet the standards in place to be accepted as a member of the league. The first expansion team approved by the existing FBA owners was awarded to a Miami-based group with strong ties to international basketball. The franchise will join the league for the 2014 season.

Aside from the expansion discussion, the FBA also reviewed other avenues which would increase exposure for the league, teams, and players. As a first step in meeting these goals, the league has also announced that the first FBA All-Star Game will be held in Orlando in the summer of 2014.

You can learn more about the Florida Basketball Association by visiting www.thefba.com.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Meitzen Named Community Outreach Advisor

 
Steven C. Meitzen has agreed to act as the Tampa Bay Rebels Community Outreach Advisor.  Steve’s work in Tampa Bay has taken him from Tampa Police Athletic League Chairman to President of the Bay Area Manufacturers Association.  Rebels GM Fernando Rojas commented, “I have known Steven for over a decade.  He brings a wealth of knowledge from the financial and manufacturing sectors.  I cannot think of a better person to spearhead the campaign to increase our presence in the community.  We are lucky to have him.”

Friday, October 18, 2013

2013 FBA Owners Meeting Recap

 



The Florida Basketball Association held its annual Owners Meeting on October 12th in Palm Beach. Greg Kite, the Commissioner of the FBA, presided over the meeting.

The owners from the Florida Flight, Heartland Prowl, Palm Beach Knights, and Tampa Bay Rebels voted to add an expansion team to the Miami market. The Miami-based franchise will be owned by Jeffrey H. Rosen, who also owns the Maccabi Haifa basketball club, which competes in the top league in Israel.

Additionally, Orlando, Florida was selected as the host city for the 2014 FBA All-Star game, the first in the leagues history.

Friday, October 11, 2013

5 Quick Questions With...John Ebeling - European Basketball Executive and International Scout

 
John Ebeling has had a successful career as both a player and executive in top leagues around the world. After finishing his Hall of Fame career at Florida Southern College in nearby Lakeland, Florida, Ebeling was selected by the Detroit Pistons in the 1982 NBA Draft, and spent over 20 years in Europe playing in some of the top international leagues in countries such as Italy, Spain, and Switzerland. In the years following his playing career, Ebeling has transitioned into the management side of European basketball, spending the previous two seasons with Pesaro, which competes in Italy’s top league, Lega Basket Serie A.

The Tampa Bay Rebels would like to thank Mr. Ebeling for taking the time to answer our 5 Quick Questions!

You have served as Sports Director for several top level teams in Italy, and it appears to be a common position with top teams throughout Europe. Can you tell us about your responsibilities in that role?

The position can vary from team to team as to your responsibilities. I was fortunate to have the total trust from our owners. You are responsible for daily operations such as organization of practices, solving player problems, and scouting for the future. Your job is 24/7 in all directions. My dream is to eventually to work for an NBA team so I continue to follow the rules I have used throughout my career of staying humble, work hard and feel fortunate!

How has your experience as a player in top international helped you as a scout?

When scouting you need to know all aspects of what a player is experiencing in order to evaluate his playing ability. Culture, living conditions, as well as his coach all can be important factors. After being overseas for 30 years I know many of the teams and coaches which helps in evaluating a players production and his ability to adapt to situations.

At what point in your playing career did you realize that you wanted to transition into a front office position after your playing days were behind you? Did that change the way you approached practice, film sessions, and the like as your playing career wound down?

I played as long as I possibly could, due to my love for the game. When I finished playing I was lucky to be offered the position of Sports Director. I consider myself fortunate of being able to step directly into a managerial position so quickly. I feel as a player ages they start to approach film sessions, practice, and the coaches view due to the fact of his maturity and understanding of the game.

You have spent a majority of your career as a player and executive in Italy, home to some of the best basketball clubs in the world. What makes the leagues and clubs in Italy so special?

Italy has always been one of the best countries for basketball in Europe. Although I feel the level in Italy has diminished in the past few years, it is still a great place for players to continue their development. The seriousness of professional basketball in Italy is still at a high level when taking into consideration other countries. The FIBA regulations have helped the overall condition of professionalism throughout the world. 

What is the best piece of advice that you can give to players who are looking to make a career of playing in international leagues?

My advice would be to approach international basketball with the same mentality and seriousness as you would have towards playing for an NBA team. Don't make the mistake that you feel you are going to go there and teach them how to play but instead be open and try to learn while playing in Europe. Learn the language and adapt to the country and don't expect they are responsible to adapt to you. It can be an extremely positive experience towards your development as a player, so don't limit yourself to trying new things. To play in Europe is a fortunate thing and the number of players that would love to take your job is numerous! Play hard and be professional. Enjoy the experience!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Tampa Bay Rebels Featured in The Laker / Lutz News

 
The Tampa Bay Rebels were recently featured in a great article written by Michael Murillo from The Laker / Lutz News. You can view the article here.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Rebels Reveal New Media Page

It is now easier than ever to follow coverage of the Tampa Bay Rebels from local media outlets as the team has introduced a new Local Media page that chronicles the coverage by the local press. By visiting the Local Media section of the website, visitors will now be able to scroll through archives of stories written by staff members at publications such as the Tampa Bay Times, New Tampa Patch, The Laker / Lutz News, and the New Tampa Neighborhood News.

Since being founded in 2011, the Tampa Bay Rebels have been bringing professional basketball to the Tampa Bay area. The organization saw an uptick in local coverage as the 2012 season approached the halfway point with the coverage continuing throughout the team’s run to the 2012 Florida Basketball Association Championship. The local papers kept tabs on the team throughout 2013 with several outlets publishing articles about the team and promoting team news through social media outlets such as Twitter throughout the regular season. In the days leading up to the 2013 FBA Championship game, the Rebels were featured in an article written by Tampa Bay Times writer Andy Warrener that appeared on the Times’ website and also in the Northeast section of the local paper.

Although the offseason has just begun, the team is still being contacted by members of the local media who are interested in continuing and improving coverage of the team in the coming months as the team prepares for a run at reclaiming the FBA Championship that they narrowly missed out on this season. Be sure to visit www.tampabayrebels.com and our new Local Media page to keep up to date on the latest story from our local media.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Rebels Recognize Shannon's Work Ethic


Xavier Shannon is a 6’3” forward who wears number 14 for the Tampa Bay Rebels. While the Rebels are competing in the Florida Basketball Association during the summer months, Xavier is hard at work in the paint, making an impact for the team that he joined in 2012. “I saw Xavier in a local league two years ago and decided to invite him to training camp,” Rebels Head Coach Fernando Rojas said. “He made the team, but didn’t play much his first year.” This year, however, Xavier earned more minutes and moved into the starting lineup the second half of the season. He improved his stats in every category, and his point production increased from 19 to 35 in 14 games this year.

Xavier doesn’t come from a renowned college program, and doesn’t wear the latest Kobe or LeBron sneakers. He doesn’t own a car either, but somehow he is always on time and ready to practice. His contribution to the team is not measured by his skill set but by his extraordinary work ethic and love for the Rebels organization. Early last year, Shannon earned the nickname “X” by Coach Rojas. “He is the X factor; every time he plays well, we win,” replied Coach Rojas when asked why he chose the moniker. The nickname has stuck, and now, everybody close to the Rebels organization now refers to Xavier simply by the nickname “X” when speaking about him.

Shannon was asked recently to describe how he feels about the Rebels. “The Rebels mean a lot to me because of the teamwork we do together,” he commented. “I enjoy being part of a group of guys dedicated to the same goal.” Rojas added, “He supports his teammates, but, more than anything, he supports his team. Some players over celebrate small accomplishments; Xavier keeps a humble attitude and is always ready to work hard for his team, not just for himself.”

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Lemons Enjoys Stellar Season

When Cory Lemons, a heady, 5’10” point guard, joined the Rebels in early June, the team was coming off back to back losses and looking for a spark in the backcourt. Lemons made an immediate impact, scoring 30 points, handing out 7 assists, and grabbing 5 rebounds in a victory against the Heartland Prowl on June 8th, earning the FBA Player of the Week in the process. In only his second game with the team, Lemons finished with a 26 point, 15 rebound, 13 assist performance that earned him his second straight league Player of the Week award. While the Rebels fell just shy of their goal of repeating as FBA champs, Lemons ended his rookie campaign with another triple-double, scoring 24 points and dishing out 15 assists while pulling down 11 rebounds in the biggest game of the year.

“Cory is a competitor that makes his teammates better each and every game; that is the most important skill for a point guard at any level in basketball,” Rebels Head Coach / GM Fernando Rojas stated. “He ran the offense with poise, putting the team in a position to win every night. He is a great guy, coachable and a positive influence in the locker room. We look forward to bigger and better things next season.”

An accomplished college player, Lemons played at Cabrini College in Pennsylvania, where he led the team to the 2012 NCAA Division III National Championship game on his way to earning All-American honors. Despite his success at the college level, Lemons was still searching for an opportunity to play at the next level when the Rebels reached out to him, and he made the most of his opportunity. While playing 5 regular season games, the point guard averaged 23.8 points, 9 assists, 8.6 rebounds, and 3.8 steals per game.  Lemons continued to make an impact in the playoffs, where he averaged 21.5 points, 10 assists, 6.5 rebounds, 3.5 steals, and 1 block per game, while shooting 45.7% from the field, including an impressive 63.6% from beyond the arc.

Along the way, Lemons became the first player in league history to earn 3 consecutive Player of the Week awards, as well as the first player to win 4 Player of the Week awards over the course of a season. He is the only player in league to finish in the top 2 of multiple categories, earning that distinction for points, assists, and steals, while finishing in the top 10 for rebounds.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Rebels Fall in Championship Game

The Tampa Bay Rebels came up just short in their bid to repeat as Florida Basketball Association champions when the Rebels’ game-tying attempt bounced off the rim as time expired, giving the Heartland Prowl a 111-109 victory and the league championship in front of the largest crowd of the season at Freedom High School in New Tampa. The Rebels and Prowl, which have built an exciting and intense rivalry over the past two years, both had chances to put the other team away during the course of the game, but neither team could capitalize, leading to another exciting finish. Over the course of 5 meetings during 2013, including the championship game, the Prowl narrowly outscored the Rebels 557-555 in total points scored.

Tampa Bay jumped out to an early 17-5 lead, taking advantage of the Prowl’s zone defense in the early going. The Prowl, however, began limiting easy buckets for the Rebels as they switched to a man to man defense, and made the most of several second-chance scoring opportunities on the offensive lead to grab the lead in the second period. Behind strong 3-point shooting, the Prowl outscored the Rebels 11-6 to over the last 3 minutes of the first half to build a 53-44 halftime lead.

During halftime, the Lady Rebels dance team performed a fantastic routine, and then selected two fans from the crowd to compete in a free-throw shooting contest, where the winner received a $20 gift card. Following the free-throw contest, another fan won $20 cash after hitting a half-court shot during the halftime festivities. Later during the game, a third fan was selected as the winner of another $20 gift card.

Coming out of the half, the Rebels made an early run, powered by 8 straight points from Chris Stephenson as he began to assert himself in the second half. After gaining momentum from Stephenson’s fast start, Tampa Bay cut the deficit to single digits on an Aubrey West layup late in the third quarter. The Prowl, however, finished the third on a run of their own, leading by as many as 17 before finishing the quarter with a 91-76 lead.

Tampa Bay got back on track in the final quarter with a strong defensive effort and solid execution on offense. A strong 14-3 run by the Rebels, closed the gap to 94-90 halfway through the fourth. While the Prowl countered with a three-pointer, Rebels’ forward Stan Bufford hit back to back three-pointers of his own to bring the home team to within 1 point with just over 5 minutes left in the game.

Both teams battled over the next four-plus minutes, staying within just a few points of each other. Trailing 109-106, Aubrey West knocked down a three from the corner to tie the game heading down the stretch. With 28 seconds left on the clock, the Prowl began their final possession. The Rebels played solid defense throughout the possession, but gave up a dunk as the shot clock was about to expire. With 3.1 seconds left, the Rebels ran a sideline inbounds play that saw Stan Bufford catch the ball and make a strong move to the basket, but the bank shot bounced off the front of the rim as time expired, with the Rebels suffering only their 3rd loss of the 2013 season.

The Rebels were led by Cory Lemons, who had a triple-double with 27 points, 15 assists, and 11 rebounds, while Chris Stephenson finished with 24 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists. Stan Bufford added 21 points and 10 rebounds, while Jeremy Grimball added 13 points off the bench.

Prowl forward Arnold Louis was named Finals MVP behind a 27 point performance. Bryce Kachinski added 24 points, including 5 three-pointers, for the Prowl as well. Michael Floyd and Mark St. Fort also scored in double figures for the Prowl, who finish 2013 with an overall record of 11-3.

To learn more about the Tampa Bay Rebels, please visit www.tampabayrebels.com.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Rebels Return to Championship Game

The Tampa Bay Rebels are making a return trip to the Florida Basketball Association championship game after winning the semi-final round of the 2013 FBA playoffs with a 112-107 victory over the Palm Beach Knights this past Saturday night.

The Rebels began the game with Cory Lemons at the point joined by former University of Tampa Spartan Jonathan Brown in the backcourt. Stan Bufford and Chris Stephenson, who both played overseas last season, opened at the forward positions, while Tampa native Xavier Shannon earned the start at center. Palm Beach opened with a tough lineup of their own, employing a starting five of Germar Kinsey, Sylvester Banks, Andy Stoute, Charles Louis and Anthony Banks.

While the game had many lead changes, the home standing Rebels had built a fifteen point lead during the third quarter. The Knights, however, were not going away quietly as they battled back with an up-tempo attack and quick three-point shots to close the gap as the game wound down. The Rebels improved their defensive effort down the stretch and controlled the boards while making free throws in the final seconds of the game to pull out the victory.

The Tampa Bay Rebels, who now stand at 11-2, will square-off against the 10-3 Heartland Prowl for the second straight year in the FBA championship game. These two teams have been involved in some of the best games in the first two years of the FBA, including a 123-122 overtime victory for the Rebels in the season opener. While the Rebels won the regular season series at 3-1, both teams have scored exactly 446 points apiece during those four regular season matchups.

The Tampa Bay Rebels want to extend an invitation to the entire Tampa Bay area to come out and support the Rebels in their quest for back to back FBA championships on August 3rd at 7pm. The game will be played at Freedom High School, which is located at 17410 Commerce Park Boulevard in Tampa. Fans 13 and under will receive free admission to the game, while those over 13 can purchase tickets for $10 at the gate or at the R●Sole store located at University Square Mall near the USF campus.

To learn more about the Rebels, please visit us online at www.tampabayrebels.com.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Tampa Bay Clinches Home Court

On Fan Appreciation Night, which included the introduction of the Lady Rebels dance team, the Tampa Bay Rebels gave the home crowd something to celebrate by pulling away late to grab a hard-earned 102-95 victory against the Palm Beach Knights. The victory ensures that the Rebels will finish with the best regular season record in the 2013 FBA season at 10-2, and will have home court advantage throughout the playoffs.

Tampa Bay struggled out of the gate, as the Knights used strong defensive pressure to limit the Rebels on the offensive end. With Palm Beach making the most of their offensive opportunities, the home team found themselves trailing by double-digits in the first half. Tampa Bay made a change to their defense to start the second-half, which allowed the Rebels to work their way back into the game. Timely shooting from guard Robert Fuchs, who finished with 22 points, along with a key layup and three-pointer from Aubrey West helped to pull the Rebels ahead for good late in the final period.

Point guard Cory Lemons narrowly missed a triple-double and finished with 22 points, 10 rebounds, 9 assists and 7 steals. Chris Stephenson earned his own double-double by scoring 13 points and grabbing a team-high 11 rebounds. Veteran guard Jonathan Brown had another solid all-around performance as he scored 13 points to go along with 5 rebounds, 5 steals, and 4 assists, while Stan Bufford contributed 12 points and 7 boards.

The Rebels will host the Knights again on Saturday, July 27th in the first round of the FBA playoffs. The game will start at 7pm and will be played at Freedom High School in New Tampa. Children 13 and under will receive free admission to the game, and those over 13 can purchase tickets for $10 at the gate or by visiting the R●Sole store located in University Square Mall. Please visit www.tampabayrebels.com for additional information.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Introducing the Lady Rebels!

The Tampa Bay Rebels will introduce the first-ever Lady Rebels dance team during Fan Appreciation Night on July 13th. The team will consist of Elena Werkheiser, Scarlett Harrison, Tanya Lee, Skyler Nickols, and Shelby Winker. Kelley King of Dance Central in Largo, Florida will serve as Team Director. The Lady Rebels will perform during every game in the playoffs and will also appear at future community activities.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Rebels To Host Fan Appreciation Night


The Tampa Bay Rebels have announced that ALL fans will be admitted free for the regular season finale on July 13th as they face the Palm Beach Knights. The game will be played at Freedom High School in New Tampa, located at 17410 Commerce Park Boulevard, Tampa, FL 33647 and will tipoff at 7pm. The Rebels have worked their way to a 9-2 record and lock up sole possession of first place for the regular season against the Knights before heading into the playoffs to defend their 2012 Florida Basketball Association Championship.

With a team comprised of former professional and collegiate players, the Rebels bring an exciting style of play to the court each game. Cory Lemons, a former NCAA Division III All-American at Cabrini College in Pennsylvania, leads the team with an average of 24.3 points and 9 assists per game, while pulling in an impressive 8 rebounds per game. Versatile wing Stan Bufford, who played at Western Michigan before playing professionally overseas, has been an important part of the Rebels success by scoring over 19 points and grabbing almost 8 rebounds per contest. Chris Stephenson, a Punta Gorda native who played collegiately at UNC-Asheville and also spent time overseas, has also been impressive in his first season with the Rebels averaging almost 17 points, and just over 8 rebounds per game this season. 

To learn more about the Rebels, please visit www.tampabayrebels.com.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Rebels Sweep Crucial Series

The Tampa Bay Rebels took a major step towards clinching home court advantage for the 2013 FBA playoffs by sweeping an important weekend series with the Florida Flight. The teams had split the first two meetings earlier in the season and sat in first and second place heading into Saturday. Following the back to back victories, the Rebels improved to 9-2, while the Flight fell to 5-5.

Saturday’s game, held in Tampa, was a battle from the very beginning. Although the Rebels gained the lead in the first quarter, the Flight made the most of their second-chance opportunities to stay within reach of the home team. After building a double-digit lead early in the third quarter, the Flight fought back to make it a two possession game. The Rebels made a final push to pull away in the decisive fourth quarter and secure a 91-80 victory.

Stan Bufford paced the Rebels with 18 points, 7 rebounds and 4 steals, while Cory Lemons added 17 points, 9 rebounds, and 9 assists. Chris Stephenson finished the game with 14 points and 9 rebounds, while fellow starter Xavier Shannon hauled in 8 rebounds.  Jonathan Brown and Jake Troyli came off the bench to chip in 14 and 11 points, respectively. The victory on Saturday moved the Rebels to 8-2 on the season.

Less than 24 hours later, both teams matched up again in Orlando in another crucial game for both teams. The Flight got off to a great start and built a lead that lasted virtually the entire first half. Facing a 44-43 deficit at the half, the Rebels used defensive pressure to create turnovers and converted those opportunities to build an 85-63 lead entering the final quarter. The Flight made a couple of strong runs in the fourth quarter, but Tampa Bay answered each time and came away with a 121-98 victory on the road.

The final score was reflective of an overall strong team effort by Tampa Bay with starters and reserves combining to fuel the team. Stan Bufford scored 25 points and grabbed 12 rebounds, leading the team in both categories. Point guard Cory Lemons added 24 points and 7 assists, while Chris Stephenson contributed 5 steals to go along with 14 points and 8 rebounds. Guard Jonathan Brown turned in another solid effort with 11 points and 5 rebounds. The Rebels bench helped key the third quarter run as Aubrey West provided solid defense and timely 3-point shooting to finish with 13 points, while Jamison Clark poured in 24 points.

The Rebels are off until July 13th when they face the Palm Beach Knights in the final regular season home game of the year. A victory against the Knights would ensure that the Rebels will receive home court advantage throughout the playoffs. Tip-off is scheduled for 7pm at Freedom High in New Tampa. Children 13 and under receive free admission to the game, while those over 13 can purchase tickets for $10 at the gate or at the R●Sole store located in University Square Mall.

Please visit www.tampabayrebels.com for the latest news about our team!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Lemons Earns 2nd Straight Weekly Award

Tampa Bay Rebels point guard Cory Lemons earned his second straight Florida Basketball Association Player of the Week honor after posting a triple-double in a victory against the Heartland Prowl on June 16th. Lemons finished the game with 26 points, 15 rebounds, 13 assists, and 4 steals. He becomes the first player in Florida Basketball Association history to win consecutive Player of the Week awards.

Lemons and the Rebels will host the Florida Flight at 7pm on Saturday June 22nd at Freedom High School in New Tampa. Fans 13 and under receive free admission to the game, while those over 13 can purchase tickets for $10 at the gate or at the R●Sole store located in the University Square Mall. For additional information on the Rebels, please visit www.tampabayrebels.com.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Rebels Tame Prowl

The Tampa Bay Rebels traveled to Lake Wales in Central Florida to face the Heartland Prowl in their final meeting of the Florida Basketball Association regular season schedule. “The final score, 108 – 92, does not reflect how the game was played. The Prowl was close throughout the whole game, making 3-point shots in transition and grabbing a number of offensive rebounds. We pulled away in the last four minutes,” Rebels Coach Fernando Rojas said.

The Rebels bench made a significant contribution on both ends of the floor, with veteran point guard Jonathan Brown contributing 17 points and 5 rebounds. The starting five set the tone of the game right from tip-off with point guard Cory Lemons delivering another solid performance and ending the contest with 26 points, including 9 of 10 from the free throw line, 15 rebounds and 13 assists for his first triple-double in a Rebels uniform. “Forward Stan Bufford had an impressive game on defense and offense,” Rojas said of Stan’s job. “That type of performance is what international teams are looking for - he had a great game against a great team.” Bufford finished with 16 points, 14 rebounds, 2 blocks and two spectacular dunks in the second half.

The Tampa Bay Rebels return to the court this weekend when they face the Florida Flight from Orlando in a key home and home weekend series. The Rebels will host Saturday’s game at 7pm at Freedom High School in New Tampa. Tickets can be purchased for $10 at the gate or you can purchase them at the R●Sole store located in University Square Mall. Fans 13 and under will receive free admission to the game. On Sunday, both teams will meet again in Orlando as they work toward solidifying their playoff position. Please visit www.tampabayrebels.com to get the latest information on the Tampa Bay Rebels.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Cory Lemons Named FBA Player of the Week

Tampa Bay Rebels point guard Cory Lemons has been named the Florida Basketball Association for the week ending June 9, 2013. Lemons scored 30 points on 11 for 20 shooting and was a perfect 7 for 7 from the free throw line. He added 7 assists, 5 rebounds, 2 steals and a block in his debut against the Heartland Prowl as the Rebels improved to 6-2 on the season.

To keep up with the latest Rebels news, please visit www.tampabayrebels.com.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Rebels Top Prowl

On Saturday June 8th, the Tampa Bay Rebels and the Heartland Prowl faced-off in their third meeting of the season at Freedom High School. After splitting the first two contests, each team expected a tough game, and both had to overcome challenges immediately. “Both teams had to face adverse floor conditions. The AC wasn’t on, and the recent weather conditions in the Bay area made the gym hot and the court slippery. We are glad none of the athletes got hurt,” commented Rebels Coach Fernando Rojas. 

The Rebels came out of the gate playing up-tempo basketball that resulted in a commanding a 16 point lead at half time. In the third quarter, the visiting team made a run behind forward Arnold Louis and guard Junior Geidi, which brought the Prowl back to within single digits at the beginning of the last period. The Rebels were able to control the remainder of game as they secured a 114-109 victory behind the strong play of new point guard Cory Lemons, who finished with 30 points and made all seven of his free throws. Center Charles Okwandu also added 21 points for Tampa Bay.

The Rebels will travel to Lake Wales next weekend to play the Prowl in the last regular season meeting between the two teams for the 2013 season. Please visit www.tampabayrebels.com for complete coverage and updated information.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Rebels Fall to Flight

The Florida Flight defeated the Tampa Bay Rebels 80 – 75 in Orlando this past weekend. The game was close from the tip-off with neither team pulling ahead by more than six points. The Rebels had their lowest shooting percentage from the field and the free throw line in the season. From the field, the team shot only 33% while also turning in their least efficient performance from the free throw line this season, shooting only 53% at the charity stripe. 

“We had 13 steals on the defensive end, but tonight we couldn’t make any shots from the field or the free throw line. Every team has a bad game every now and then, tonight was our turn. We’ll go back to the drawing board and be ready for the next one,” Coach Rojas commented after the game.

The 5-2 Rebels will look to snap their recent skid when they host the Heartland Prowl, who stand at 4-1, on Saturday, June 8th at 7pm at Freedom High School in New Tampa. Children 13 and under receive free admission to the game, while those over 13 can purchase tickets for only $10. Tickets can be purchased at the R●Sole store located in the University Square Mall near USF or at the Freedom High School gymnasium prior to tip-off. Additional information can also be found at www.tampabayrebels.com.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Prowl Defeat Rebels

The Tampa Bay Rebels played the Heartland Prowl during Memorial Day Weekend in Lake Wales. The home team got off to a good offensive start that put them 18 points ahead early in the game. The Rebels second unit got in the game in the second quarter and, with a great defensive effort, made the score 61 – 59 at the half. 

The second half of the game saw the Prowl running the floor and making shots, while the Rebels allowed second opportunities leaving the final score 123 – 101. For the Rebels forward Stan Bufford had 18 points and 11 rebounds, and Jamison Clark came off the bench to produce 19 points and 4 rebounds. Coach Rojas commented at the end of the game, “The Prowl played very well tonight, we came back in the game, but we couldn’t match their intensity. They deserved to win."

The Rebels return to action on June 1st as they face the Florida Flight in Orlando. To get the latest on team information, please visit www.tampabayrebels.com.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

5 Quick Questions with...Alex Ferrer Kristjansson - Brand & Communication Director, Euroleague Basketball

Alex Ferrer Kristjansson is the Brand & Communication Director at Euroleague Basketball, where he has worked since 2005. Mr. Kristjansson is involved in several key aspects of the Euroleague including Brand Management, Ticket Strategy, Sponsorship, and Online Strategy. Additionally, he is involved with the marketing and operational functions for international events and is responsible for the coordination of marketing efforts with both the league and individual teams. 

The Tampa Bay Rebels are grateful to Mr. Kristanjansson for taking time out of his schedule to answer our 5 Quick Questions!


What is the Euroleague?

The Euroleague is the premier clubs competition in Europe where, every season, the 24 best clubs compete to become European Champions. The League features clubs that are world-class brands like FC Barcelona, Real Madrid, Fenerbahce Ulker, Olympiacos, Panathinaikos, CSKA Moscow, etc.


How does a team earn the right to compete in the Euroleague? 

There are three ways of playing the Euroleague:

First one - There are 13 clubs that have what is called and A-license, or long term license, which basically means that they will participate in the competition independently of their National League results that season (there are certain limitations though). Every season, the worst of these 13 teams according to a previously established criteria, may lose its spot. These 13 clubs today are Anadolu EFES Istanbul, CSKA Moscow, EA7 – Emporio Armani Milan, FC Barcelona Regal, Fenerbahce Ulker Istanbul, Laboral Kutxa Vitoria, Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv, Montepaschi, Olympiacos Piraeus, Panathinaikos Athens, Real Madrid, Unicaja Malaga and Zalgiris Kaunas.

Second one - By becoming the Champion of one of the top European National Leagues. Following a league ranking, champions or best teams of the top leagues join the 13 A-licence, clubs obtaining a B-license.

Third and last one - By becoming the Champion of the Eurocup, the second European club’s competition, which is also managed by Euroleague Basketball.


What challenges does the Euroleague face in bringing in clubs from around the world to compete against each other?

There are many different challenges in many different areas. We are dealing with 24 different clubs every season, that all have different mentalities from one to the other, live in different social realities and in some cases, have big cultural differences. Putting all that together in a model of a League as the one we have, in which the clubs are the owners, is not easy, but it is showing very good results after the 13 years of existence of this management model. This is something quite unique in European club sports. 


How has the evolution of social media impacted coverage of the Euroleague?

It has certainly impacted us in a big way, as I guess it has happened to every sport organization, club or player. Social Media has really enabled a multi-way communication, in which the League speaks with the fans, the fans do the same with the league, plus the fans speak amongst themselves, giving them the opportunity of becoming their own media building a SM reputation amongst their readers.

Social Media has really enabled fans to show their opinion, have a direct communication channel with leagues, clubs, players and even journalists, and somehow making their opinion count and be heard. And the speed at which the information flows has also affected the way communication is looked at.


How can people in the United States follow Euroleague action? 

Live action can be followed on NBA TV, ESPN 3 and also on the official live streaming website www.euroleague.tv

Fans can also watch some live Euroleague action on USA’s field every season, since for a few years already, Euroleague Basketball is sending some of its best teams to play friendly pre-season games there, facing NBA teams. Real Madrid, Olympiacos and CSKA Moscow, amongst others, have already played these games in recent years, and this years’ games will be announced soon.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Chris Stephenson Named FBA Player of the Week

Tampa Bay Rebels guard Chris Stephenson has been named Player of the Week by the Florida Basketball Association. Stephenson averaged 26.5 points, 8.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 2.5 steals, and 1 block as the Rebels won back to back games and remained undefeated. “Chris is doing a good job on both ends of the floor. He can play several positions effectively, however, his leadership skills have been the most important addition to the team,” stated Head Coach / GM Fernando Rojas. Through the first five games of the 2013 season, Stephenson is averaging 22 points, 8.4 rebounds, 5.6 assists, and 3.4 steals per game. 

Please visit www.tampabayrebels.com to follow Chris and get the latest information on the Tampa Bay Rebels.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Rebels Win 5th Straight

The Tampa Bay Rebels won their 5th straight game with a 127-95 victory over the Palm Beach Knights this past Saturday night at Freedom High School. Both teams played the game at a fast pace. Unlike last weekend, the Rebels started the game playing strong defense and running the floor effectively to take control of the game early on. 

Rebels guard Robert Fuchs continues to improve his game, grabbing 9 rebounds and adding 10 points in the contest. “Rob is becoming a solid defensive player, tonight he took a defensive charge, and his rotation on the defensive end is helping our transition game,” Coach Rojas commented after the game. Center Charles Okwandu had another strong showing with 32 points and 16 rebounds. Guard Stan Bufford also added a double-double of his own with 23 points and 10 rebounds.

The Rebels will hit the road again next weekend when they face-off against the Heartland Prowl in Lake Wales. Please visit www.tampabayrebels.com for additional information.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Police Athletic League Welcomes Rebels


The Tampa Bay Rebels moved their weekly practices to the recently updated Police Athletic League (PAL) facility in Tampa. PAL is a registered non-for profit organization that is dedicated to providing affordable after school, summer, and athletic opportunities to Tampa Bay’s youth. PAL partners with numerous organizations to provide a unique program that consists of crime prevention, crime intervention, mentoring, homework assistance, and self-esteem programs. 

“The entire Staff at PAL has been very supportive by allowing the Rebels practice time in the gym and the use of special areas to watch film in preparation for weekend games. PAL does a fundamental job in our society allowing cultural and educational opportunities for the youth in Tampa. We look forward to being part of this engine of community support. We have already presented one project that can bring benefits to the PAL organization,” GM Fernando Rojas commented.

Next week, the Rebels will return to Freedom high school to continue practices for the remainder of the season.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Rebels Sweep Weekend

The Rebels faced their first road test of the season as they played a back to back series against the Palm Beach Knights. The renovated Knights are loaded with young talent this year. “Coach Spruill Jr. has done a great job revamping the Knights roster. I have no doubt he is going to have a successful season,” Coach Rojas commented.

The first game, on Saturday May 11th, saw the return of Tampa’s point guard Jonathan Brown, who had been sidelined since training camp after suffering a leg injury. When asked about his injury, Brown replied, “My leg feels fine. I’m just glad to be back.”

The Knights started the contest by implementing a half-court press that allowed Palm Beach to play up-tempo basketball, keeping the score close at the half. The game, however, was dominated by Rebels center Charles Okwandu, who patrolled the paint efficiently and finished the game with 27 points, 20 rebounds and 5 blocks. Forward Jamison Clark also contributed 22 points for Tampa Bay as the Rebels pulled out a 128-106 victory. Earl Mills led the Knights with 22 points while Anthony Daniels chipped in 20 in the loss.

The following day, both teams headed back to Inlet Grove High School to face off in the weekend finale. The home team came out of the gate running the floor hard and made consecutive 3-point shots to end the first half 14 points ahead of the visiting team. The Knights’ Germer Kinsey teamed with Earl Mills and Anthony Daniels to score a combined 52 points throughout the game. In the third quarter, however, Tampa Bay made a comeback thanks to outstanding defensive efforts from guards Stan Bufford, Aubrey West, and Jonathan Brown. Rebels shooting guard Robert Fuchs took full advantage of his time on the court, producing 25 points and 5 rebounds. Stan Bufford finished with a double-double adding 21 points and 10 rebounds as the Rebels completed the weekend sweep with a 118-97 victory.

The Rebels, who now stand at 4-0, return to action on Saturday, May 18th as they face the Palm Beach Knights at 7pm at Freedom High School in New Tampa. Children under 13 receive free admission to the game and tickets cost only $10 for those 13 and older. Tickets may be purchased at the gym on the night of the game or at the R●Sole store located within University Square Mall near the USF campus. For additional information, please visit www.tampabayrebels.com.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Rebels Rise Above Flight


The Tampa Bay Rebels won over the Florida Flight 124 – 107 in the second weekend of games for the Florida Basketball Association. Charles Okwandu scored 24 points before fouling out in the fourth quarter. Stan Bufford contributed with 23 points, 15 of them in the second half. Rebels forward Brant Leitnaker finished with 19 points on 9 for 11 (82%) shooting. With the win, the Rebels improve to 2-0 on the year.

The Flight were led by guard Ernest Jones, who was very active on both ends of the floor and scored 14 points in the first quarter. Forwards Adam Waldo and Corey Williams gave the Flight consistent rebounding and hustle work throughout the game. The loss drops the Flight to 2-1 in 2013.

The Rebels now prepare to hit the road for the first time this season as they face the Palm Beach Knights. The Rebels and Knights will play back to back games on May 11th and May 12th. Please visit www.tampabayrebels.com for more information.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Former Butler Star Shawn Vanzant Joins Rebels


Former Wharton High School and Butler University player Shawn Vanzant has joined the Rebels for the remainder of the 2013 FBA season. Vanzant is just returning to the area after having played the 2012-2013 season with the Springfield Armor of the NBA’s Developmental League where he was averaging over 15 minutes per game before an injury slowed him in the second half of the season.

Vanzant has enjoyed success at all levels of basketball throughout his career. He scored 1,192 points during his career at Wharton High School where he played for coach Tommy Tonelli, and led the team to a 29-2 record and a district championship as a senior. With his high school career over, Vanzant took advantage of the opportunity to play at Butler University, improving each year as the program made 4 straight appearances in the NCAA Tournament and back to back appearances in the NCAA National Championship games in 2010 and 2011. He was also named to the 2011 Horizon League All-Tournament Team.

After college, Vanzant embarked on his professional career by playing for Korihait, a team from Finland’s top league, the Korisliiga. Following his time in the Korisliiga, Vanzant also played for Ura Basket from Finland’s First Division before heading back to the U.S. and entering the Developmental League draft. He was selected 62nd overall by the Springfield Armor, an affiliate of the Brooklyn Nets, in the 2012 Developmental League draft.

“Shawn is a tremendous young man to coach. He is a winner and will always do whatever necessary to help his team at both ends of the floor. He competes and plays as hard as any player I have ever coached. His success as a player at Wharton and Butler speaks for itself,” stated Wharton Head Coach Tommy Tonelli.

The Tampa Bay Rebels will have Vanzant in uniform as they face the Florida Flight on Sunday, May 5th at Freedom High School in New Tampa. The game will start at 2pm. Tickets are free for children under 13 and are only $10 for those who are 13 and older, and may be purchased at the R●Sole store in University Square Mall or at the gate on the day of the game. Please visit www.tampabayrebels.com for additional information. 

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Rebels Prevail in OT Thriller




The Tampa Bay Rebels started the 2013 season with a thrilling overtime victory against the Heartland Prowl, winning 123 – 122. Both teams offered fans the best basketball outside the NBA in this rematch of the 2012 FBA championship game.

Stan Bufford, guard for the Rebels, was hot in the first quarter with 12 points, all from behind the three-point mark. The Rebels pull away by 16 points in the first quarter, but Prowl’s sharpshooter Bryce Kachinski scored 14 points in the half helping the Prowl get back into the game as they trailed 60-50 at the half.

The Prowl made a second-half run with strong play from guard Junior Geidi, who finished with 26 points. As the horn sounded to end regulation, the teams were knotted at 107 points. Prowl power forward Derrell Hendrson finished the night with 12 points and made a crucial play in overtime to keep his team within striking distance. The Rebels, however, would not be denied in the extra period, and squeaked out the 1-point win.

Cornell Young, Head Coach of the Prowl, commented after the game, “It was a very competitive game. Both teams showed the same determination to win. It’s a tough loss, but we will be ready for the next game.”

Rebels’ center Charles Okwandu was a force throughout the game scoring a double – double with 22 points and 15 rebounds while shooting 75% from the free-throw line. As a team, the Rebels had a spectacular game from the free-throw line, shooting 87 percent. Chris Stephenson knocked down all 5 of his attempts, while forward Jamison Clark was a perfect 9 for 9 from the charity stripe.

After the game, Coach Rojas said, “I am glad about the win. We played hard and won against one of the best clubs in the FBA. We had good moments of basketball, but we still need to work on the defensive end.”

The Tampa Bay Rebels will return to action on Sunday, May 5th at Freedom High School in New Tampa as they face the Florida Flight. The game will start at 2pm. Tickets are free for children under 13 and are only $10 for those who are 13 and older, and may be purchased at the R●Sole store in University Square Mall or at the gate on the day of the game. Please visit www.tampabayrebels.com for additional information.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Rebels Sign Florida Southern College Product



The Tampa Bay Rebels have announced the signing of Brant Leitnaker from nearby Florida Southern College. The 6’10” forward/center is expected to help bolster the front line of the Rebels. Prior to his time at Florida Southern, Leitnaker played at Indiana State University, where he also completed his undergraduate degree. 

Since 2007, the Rebels have provided an opportunity for local college players to begin their professional careers. During that time, the team has worked with players from schools across the Tampa Bay region including the University of South Florida, the University of Tampa, Eckerd College, and Florida Southern. “With so many programs of all sizes in our area, local colleges and universities provide a great pool of players for our team. In return, we are able to give players from schools throughout the Tampa Bay area their first taste of basketball at a professional level,” said Andrew Phillips, the Director of Scouting for the Rebels. 

The Rebels will host their season-opener on Saturday, April 27th at 7pm as they face the Heartland Prowl in a rematch of the 2012 Florida Basketball Association championship game. All home games will be played at Freedom High School in New Tampa. Children under 13 receive free admission while those over 13 can purchase tickets for $10 at the R●Sole store located inside the University Square Mall or at the gymnasium on the night of the game.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Tryouts Net NCAA Champion from UConn and UNC-Asheville Product


The Tampa Bay Rebels held tryouts on March 23rd at Freedom High School in New Tampa in preparation for the 2013 Florida Basketball Association season. Players from the Tampa Bay area and other cities across the state of Florida were put through various drills during the 2-hour workout under the instruction of the Rebels’ staff. Following the workouts, the Rebels reached agreements with two players and extended training camp invitations to a handful of other prospects.

The Rebels were able to reach an agreement with Charles Okwandu, a seven-foot center from the University of Connecticut , who will provide the Rebels with a battle-tested big man to anchor the post. Okwandu, who was born in Nigeria, played for legendary coach Jim Calhoun at UConn, and was a key role player for the 2011 National Champion Huskies, scoring 2 points, grabbing 5 rebounds, and blocking a shot in the NCAA Championship game. While at UConn, Okwandu played with Kemba Walker of the Charlotte Bobcats and Jeremy Lamb of the Oklahoma City Thunder. Following his time at Connecticut, Okwandu moved on the play for the Rio Grande Valley Vipers of the NBA’s Developmental League. When asked why the Rebels are a good fit for him, Charles replied, “I want to improve my game. I work hard and am always ready to learn from the coaches and my teammates.”

Chris Stephenson, a 6’3” guard from UNC-Asheville of the Big South Conference, also reached an agreement to play for the Rebels during the 2013 season. A versatile wing player, Stephenson was a key part of the Bulldogs as they reached back to back NCAA Tournaments in 2011 and 2012. A native of Punta Gorda, Florida, Stephenson played in Europe for BC Siaulai in Lithuania in his first pro season. “The Tampa Bay Rebels are a wonderful program,” Stephenson stated. “The Rebels are relatively close to me, so it feels good to play in my home state again. They play in the off-season of the European leagues so it is a great way to stay in shape plus be around athletes that have the same thought process, which is to get better collectively.”

The Rebels will play their season-opener at home on April 27th at 7pm as they face-off against the Heartland Prowl in a rematch of the 2012 championship game. All games will be played at Freedom High School in New Tampa. Children 13 and under receive free admission to the game, while those over 13 can purchase tickets for $10. Tickets can be purchased at R●Sole, located in University Square Mall, during store hours, or you can purchase them at the Freedom High School gymnasium on the night of the game. Please visit www.tampabayrebels.com for the complete schedule and the latest news on the Tampa Bay Rebels.

Monday, April 1, 2013

R•Sole Becomes Official Ticket Distributor


 
The Tampa Bay Rebels have reached an agreement with R•Sole, the premier supplier of urban clothing for men in the Tampa Bay area, to become an official ticket distributor for the 2013 FBA season. Fans wishing to purchase tickets for Tampa Bay Rebels home games may do so by visiting the R•Sole store located within the University Square Mall. Tickets for all home games will be $10 for those over 13 years of age, while kids 13 and under will receive free admission to all games.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Rebels Unveil E-Newsletter

With the 2013 Florida Basketball Association season less than two months away, the Tampa Bay Rebels have announced a new platform to allow fans, business partners, and community members to stay up to date on the latest Tampa Bay Rebels news. Followers of the Tampa Bay Rebels can sign up to receive the team’s E-Newsletter by visiting www.tampabayrebels.com and clicking on the “Subscribe To Our E-Newsletter” link, which is located below the video player on the Rebel’s homepage. Visitors will only need to submit a valid email address to begin receiving the latest news about the Tampa Bay Rebels.

“We are always looking for ways to interact with our fans and our community along with current and potential business partners. The addition of the E-Newsletter provides a valuable avenue for members of those groups to learn more about our organization and develop a relationship with our team,” stated Rebels staff member Andrew Phillips.

The Rebels also maintain a presence on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/TampaBayRebels), Twitter (@tampabayrebels), and LinkedIn (http://www.linkedin.com/company/tampa-bay-rebels) and invite you to connect with us on all of those platforms as well.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

2013 Pre-Season Update


 As the 2013 season approaches, the Tampa Bay Rebels will be adding a new feature for fans who want to receive the latest news from the team. In mid-February, the Tampa Bay Rebels will be launching an E-Newsletter that will include updates about team activities in addition to other articles and interviews. Fans can also “Like” the Rebels on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/TampaBayRebels) and on follow us on Twitter (@tampabayrebels).
 
The Rebels’ staff has spent countless hours this off-season scouting potential players in international leagues, local recreational leagues, and throughout the college ranks. The Rebels will hold open tryouts for prospective players on March 23rd from 11am until 2pm in the open courts behind Freedom High School in New Tampa. The tryouts will be open to any interested player with a non-refundable registration fee of only $20 that must be paid the day of the event.  

Following the tryouts, the Rebels will invite those players who have made the cut to training camp, which will take place in mid-April. “Training camp will be intense. We will be having daily practices over those two weeks as we prepare to defend our 2012 FBA Championship. It will be very important for us to build familiarity with each other so that we have a successful season. We had a solid camp last year and it showed throughout the season,” said AndrewPhillips, the Rebels Director of Scouting.  

While the league schedule has not yet been finalized, the season is expected to begin in late April. Please sign up for our E-Newsletter to ensure you are among the first to know when the Rebels’ 2013 season schedule has been released.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Recap of FBA Owners Meeting in Orlando

On the heels of a successful first season, the Florida Basketball Association held their owners meeting in preparation for the second season of the FBA which will take place over the summer of 2013. The semi-pro basketball league, which includes franchises located in Palm Beach, Lake Wales, Orlando and Tampa Bay, brought owners together to discuss various ways to improve the league. Team owners discussed league expansion, the playoff schedule and format, and the possible addition of an All-Star game.

The Florida Basketball Association welcomed the Palm Beach Knights as the new team for the 2013 season. A new playoff system with a final four tournament that will give more teams the opportunity to win the FBA Championship, regardless of their record during the season was also established by the league. Additionally, the FBA announced that it will host its inaugural All-Star game in July. 

Following the meeting, Tampa Bay Rebels GM Fernando Rojas commented, “The new playoff format and the All-Star game are things that we discussed last year, but the owners agreed to wait until this season to execute this plan. This is an ambitious goal for a two year old league; however, all the owners are behind it. We look forward to another great season of exciting basketball.”

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Rebels' Kendrick Signs Contract With Mexican Club


After winning the 2012 Florida Basketball Association Championship (FBA) with the Tampa Bay Rebels, center Matt Kendrick was signed to play in the Liga Estatal de Basquetbol (LEB) in Mexico. Matt will play for the Choriceros de Camargo, located in the State of Chihuahua. This is Matt's second international stint, as he was previously hired by Sokol de Antofagasta of the Chilean professional league.

With the Rebels, the seven-foot Kendrick posted 17 points, 12 rebounds and 4 blocks per contest. His best overall performance came June 16, 2012, against the Florida Flight when he posted a triple-double with 21 points, 13 rebounds, and 10 blocks while hitting 9 of 12 shots from the floor. Coach Rojas commented, "The LEB is a good choice for Matt. He will be able to help his club and keep developing his game."

Friday, January 11, 2013

Rebels Announce 2013 Tryout

Photo Courtesy of JD Pixology
The Tampa Bay Rebels are gearing up to defend their 2012 FBA title in the upcoming Florida Basketball Association season. The Rebels will hold tryouts on Saturday, March 23rd in the open courts of Freedom High School from 11 am until 2 pm. The cost will be $20 at the door, and players must be 18 years of age or older to participate.

Local Businesses Partner With Rebels

During the off-season that followed their 2012 FBA Championship, the Tampa Bay Rebels were able to secure partnerships with several businesses in the community. Among the partners for the 2013 season are LA Fitness, R●Sole, and Peabody’s. These companies are well known for both the quality of their products and the services that they provide.

LA Fitness is a nationwide chain of health clubs that will be supporting the Rebels during the team’s training camp in April and throughout the season. R●Sole is the premier supplier of urban clothing for men. Amy Wright, Manager of the Tampa store said, “Many of our existing customers are basketball players from local colleges; we think partnering with the Tampa Bay Rebels is a natural extension of our business.” Peabody’s is a top notch sports bar located in New Tampa offering great food and entertainment since 1998. Initial cross-marketing is underway between Peabody’s and the Rebels advertising each other in their social media outlets.