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25 May

Albany Capital Center Welcomes GymRat Challenge Basketball Tournament


The Albany Capital Center (ACC) will welcome the acclaimed GymRat CHALLENGE basketball tournament to the facility this weekend, May 26 and 27. Following the recent purchase of three full size basketball courts, the ACC can now host basketball and volleyball tournaments in its third-floor multipurpose room.

 The GymRat CHALLENGE is the single largest Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) tournament in the Northeast, hosting thousands of players. The GymRat CHALLENGE has earned its reputation due to the presence of college coaches and scouts recruiting top young talent for its programs. The May event will feature 268 boys’ teams at several Capital Region locations in the 12U through 11th Grade divisions. The teams will travel in from across the country and Canada.

 “The Albany Convention Center Authority had incredible foresight when purchasing the courts,” said Doug McClaine, general manager, Albany Capital Center. “Being able to offer these court rentals really broadens the scope of what kind of events we can hold at our facility. They saw a real demand for court space and we’ve already capitalized on the need – we immediately secured numerous events using the courts through next year.”

 Zero Gravity, another elite basketball showcase tournament for youth, is also confirmed to host its tournament at the Albany Capital Center on June 30 and July 1. Memorial Day weekend alone, the ACC will welcome 1,500 people through their doors. The GymRat CHALLENGE is planning to return to the ACC in 2019, bringing both boys and girls tournaments to the building.

 The courts will continue to be used for the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) tournament which takes place periodically at the Times Union Center. In addition to basketball, the courts are also lined for volleyball use. In addition to several basketball tournaments in the pipeline, the ACC will host The New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) Boys Volleyball Championships this fall, bringing more than 700 athletes and spectators to the Albany area. This is the first time these championships will be held in the Capital Region and will remain at the ACC through 2020.

 The floors purchased by the ACC already have an impressive history; they are the same courts used in the 2018 NBA All-Star game and fan festival held at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. “The two floors that were used for the NBA have been sanded down and painted, then converted into three floors for the Albany Capital Center,” said Jay Burson, sales manager, Horner Flooring Company. NBA players and celebrities played on the floors throughout the All Star weekend.