The end of the evaluation period for college hoops means a frantic push to close the grassroots basketball season, with the majority of top leagues descending on Las Vegas for year-end tournaments.
After winning the USBA national championship a week ago, LeBron James Jr.’s 13U North Coast Blue Chips squad arrived in Vegas as one of the premier attractions for fans hoping to catch a glimpse at Bronny in person (and LeBron himself). Organizers of the tournament featuring James Jr.’s squad didn’t account for the pandemonium sweeping the nation that is be Bronny-mania, and they stuck the Blue Chips in an auxiliary gym at Liberty High School in Hendersonville, just outside Vegas.
As one might expect, a gym designed to handle freshman hoops games with, as Yahoo’s Pete Thamel explained, three rows of bleachers, was not enough for the game and it ended up getting canceled amid security concerns. LeBron briefly arrived and then departed once the teams were cleared off of the floor.
Thamel writes that parents of the opposing team, the Mean Streets from Chicago, were being barred entry to the game because the gym was at capacity. That led to security at the game shutting things down after a “heated altercation” that witnesses described to Thamel as being an issue of security getting in the faces of parents trying to get into the gym to watch their kids.
Making matters worse was the fact that many people paid $15 for the right to watch Bronny and company play, and the event had to figure out a way to provide refunds. Ultimately, refunds were provided and an actually unsafe situation was kept from happening, but hopefully this serves a lesson to all tournament organizers moving forward. If your event features LeBron James Jr.’s team, you should probably put them in the biggest gym you have, even if it’s just a team of 13-year-olds.