2002 Shaw’s Pro Summer League Set To Tip-off

Jason Campos

UMass Boston is gearing up to once again host the Shaw’s Pro Summer League, the annual summer basketball camp in which rookies, free agents, and some returning players of ten National Basketball League teams participate. The League will run from Monday July 15 to Sunday July 22.

The event has been an incredible success in the past, giving UMass Boston some national exposure since some of the games are broadcasted by sports cable giant, ESPN. The 3000-seat capacity Clark Athletic Center Gymnasium allows for a desired blend of professional accommodation and the intimate atmosphere of a college environment.

The Boston Celtics will be among the ten teams that will play in the Shaw’s Pro League. Also participating in the week long event will be the Atlanta Hawks, Milwaukee Bucks, Minnesota Timberwolves, New Jersey Nets, New York Knicks, Orlando Magic, Philadelphia 76ers, San Antonio Spurs, and Washington Wizards.

Fans will get a chance to see new draft picks of the incoming teams from the recently held 2002 NBA draft. Some of the players include Juan Dixon from the University of Maryland and Jared Jeffries from the University of Indiana, who were drafted by the Washington Wizards; Marcus Haislip from the University of Tennessee, who was drafted by the Milwaukee Bucks; and Ryan Humphrey from University of Notre Dame, was drafted by the Orlando Magic.

The Boston Celtics are expected to have their sole draft pick, Darius Songaila, in attendance. The six foot nine inch forward, who is from Lithuania, played four years at Wake Forest University. The Celtics took Songaila in the second round of the draft with the 50th pick.

There will be two sessions per day, one in the afternoon and one in the evening. Most sessions will feature a doubleheader and afternoon weekend sessions will feature a tripleheader.

Along with the games there will be a free fan festival. The festival will be held outdoors on the UMB campus and host a variety of activities and games. The NBA Jam Van, the 67-foot vehicle that converts to a 4000-foot square activity center, will be present.

Thousands of free tickets will be made available to community groups around the Greater Boston area, thanks to the Boston Celtics and Shaw’s Supermarkets. Tickets are on sale through Ticketmaster for $10 a session. There will be no tickets sold at the door.