The Winnipeg Sea Bears (+163) play their first road game in franchise history in a trip to Brampton to take on the reigning CEBL champion Honey Badgers (-240) on Thursday (June 1) at the CAA Centre at 7 p.m. ET.
The game will be available for streaming on TSN+, CEBL+ powered by BetVictor and on the CEBL Mobile app available on iOS and Android devices.
Brampton will look to bounce back from consecutive losses to begin their title defence after a pair of two-point defeats. They lost to the Ottawa BlackJacks on opening night and to the Scarborough Shooting Stars in the Honey Badgers’ home opener.
Brampton’s Christian Vital attended a mini-camp for the Utah Jazz in Salt Lake City earlier this week with Scarborough’s Jalen Harris. The guard is coming off a stellar start to the season, scoring 24 points against Ottawa in the opener, and 36 points to go along with a franchise-record 13 rebounds against Scarborough.
The Honey Badgers entered target time against Ottawa with an 86-78 lead but faltered late and lost 95-93. Returners Prince Oduro, Koby McEwen and Zane Waterman each reached double figures on efficient shooting for Brampton with Oduro grabbing 12 rebounds as well. However, the Honey Badgers received just 14 points from their bench in the loss and went 14-27 from the free-throw line.
Brampton corrected their mistakes in the following game against Scarborough, with a 9-11 outing from the free-throw line and 14 points off the bench from Cody John alone. However, John was the only Honey Badgers’ player outside of Vital to reach double figures.
This time, the Honey Badgers came from behind in target score time against the Shooting Stars and tied the game at 78 following a McEwen jumper. After a Scarborough timeout, a Kalif Young tip-in handed the Honey Badgers their second consecutive loss to kick off their title defence.
The reigning champs will hope to have Vital in the lineup on Thursday after a busy week with the Jazz. Regardless of Vital’s status, the Honey Badgers will look for more consistency from the supporting cast throughout the remainder of the season.
Meanwhile, the Winnipeg Sea Bears’ first game in franchise history went as well as they could have hoped. The new team played in front of a CEBL-record crowd of over 7,000 fans at the Canada Life Centre on Saturday (May 27) and earned a 90-85 win over the Vancouver Bandits.
The Sea Bears won’t have home court advantage in Thursday’s contest but will have core contributors Teddy Allen, EJ Anosike and Jelani Watson-Gayle.
Watson-Gayle, a British sharpshooter from London, came off the bench to score a team-high 22 points for Winnipeg, including the game-winner. He was 7-14 from the field and 6-10 from three.
Despite the strong shooting from Watson-Gayle, the Sea Bears struggled to shoot efficiently in their first game. The squad shot 36 per cent overall, 23 per cent from three and 65 per cent from the free-throw line against Vancouver.
Winnipeg star Teddy Allen will look to bounce back from a tough night from the field in his debut with the squad, going 5-25 and 1-11 from deep. However, Allen dropped 15 points and corralled 11 rebounds in the win. Meanwhile, Anosike notched 19 points and 11 rebounds for the Sea Bears.
Winnipeg’s homegrown talent also performed in the first game. Big man Chad Posthumus had 10 points and 9 rebounds despite finding his way into foul trouble. Meanwhile, Simon Hildebrandt, the number one overall pick in the U SPORTS Draft, came off the bench to score 13 points in his debut.
Thursday’s game will be available for streaming on TSN+, CEBL+ powered by BetVictor and on the CEBL Mobile app available on iOS and Android devices.