The last time the city had a professional basketball team to cheer on was during the final season of the Grand Rapids Hoops, which were at one time also called The Mackers, and the Grand Rapids Flight.
However, the hoop dreams never stopped for Adam Chrisco of Grand Rapids.
He showed off a brand new team of players Thursday that will take the courts in West Michigan as the Grand Rapids Cyclones.
“That`s our current focus is to have a strong following in Grand Rapids for basketball again,” said Chrisco, the founder and president of basketball operations for the Grand Rapids Cyclones.
Games will begin at the DeltaPlex in late February, with many of the players coming from West Michigan high schools and colleges like Justin Anyijong. He’s a graduate of East Grand Rapids.
“We work hard, everyday we go to practice, we play hard,” said Justin.
“We have like a 5-year goal, to be a D league team,” said Chrisco.
For now, they’ll be playing with the Premier Basketball League.
Chrisco talked about what may be different this time to help the team survive.
“You know, those other teams had some success and so I`ve researched all that and I hope to capitalize on mainly what Grand Rapids loves to follow which is good sports, a good positive team,” said Chrisco. “So, we`ll have that as a factor. As far as financially, what some of the other teams struggled with, it would have been payroll and the arena size that they played in and then of course the fan support and sponsor support. But, we have some investors that are really well-known in this area that wish to remain silent at this point who are not going to allow us to fail.”
Chrisco said it was not a lack of fan support that troubled the other teams, but financial issues.
“Yeah, for the most part, to pay your players and to get a team ready to go on the road and put a hotel and feed everybody, there`s a lot of money involved. So, it`s hard to generate that, just from fans alone.”