After getting hit hard by both Hurricane Sandy and an unexpectedly severe snow storm in the last two weeks, New York City finally received not good, but great news on Monday afternoon.
The NCAA has announced that Madison Square Garden will be hosting the East Regional of the 2014 NCAA men’s basketball tournament, the first set of NCAA Tournament games to be played at MSG since 1961.
“Only three arenas have hosted more tournament games than Madison Square Garden, despite it being more than five decades since the last time it hosted,” said Dan Gavitt, the vice president of NCAA men’s basketball. “That gives you a great sense of the historical significance of bringing the tournament back there.”
The tournament will be hosted by both St. Johns, who plays a number of home games at MSG each season, and the Big East conference, who has held it’s conference tournament at “the world’s most famous arena” every year since 1983.
On top of hosting the New York Knicks, as well as the previously mentioned sets of college hoops games, Madison Square Garden already hosts several large-scale national programs and tournaments in both November and December, including the 2K Sports Classic, the NIT Season Tip-Off, and the Jimmy V Classic.
As exciting as it must be for New Yorkers to get the NCAA Tournament back, it’s not as if they haven’t had an opportunity to check out games in recent history, seeing how the last time NCAA tournament games were held in the local area was in 2011, as the East Regional was held at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.
For hoops, hip-hop and other random sports and pop culture commentary, follow Jared Mintz on Twitter @JaredMintzTruth