Basketball Manitoba today announced the continued delay to the start-up of all youth and adult based basketball leagues in Manitoba due to the COVID-19 pandemic. All basketball league operations in Manitoba were stopped in March as the pandemic closures began in the province. In September, many adult and youth leagues normally are getting back into the fall/winter competitive mode by accepting player and team registrations.
Basketball in Manitoba is still currently in Phase 2 of the Canada Basketball Return Plan that sees basketball being restricted to physically distanced training while using your own basketball, no passing or rebounding drills along with some other hygiene and health restrictions. An anticipated change to the shared equipment portion of the limitations may come in the next few weeks as the back to school process rolls out in Manitoba. More information on that will be announced if and when the changes are approved.
The challenges of hosting basketball competition in the near future have become next to impossible due to the physical spacing regulations, the numbers of people involved and the equipment requirements among other factors. This, along with the uncertainty of accessing facilities to host any games is putting up many barriers to having things run in a normal fashion. To our knowledge, all community use permits at all Manitoba school divisions have been put on pause and most university and college facilities remain closed. Only a few community centres and the Sport Manitoba courts have opened up in a limited fashion, but not nearly enough to facilitate the thousands of hours required to host the regular load of games in the coming months.
With the recently announced return to school plan from the Province, the clarity of what team sports and facility access will look like in Manitoba this fall and winter still remains quite uncertain. Basketball at the school level usually gets going in December.
In light of all this, the Board of Directors of Basketball Manitoba has decided to extend the stoppage of all youth and adult league activities until further notice. No leagues/games will be sanctioned, insured or promoted by Basketball Manitoba until we reach a time where they can be offered in a safe manner.
Some organizations are currently hosting, or are considering hosting, player training camps under the Phase 2 plan. We do encourage those who are interested in offering some form of programming to contact our office on how best they can plan for some limited programming under the return to basketball plan. You can view those that have already started offering programming here...
The Basketball Manitoba Return to Basketball Plan that was released on July 3, 2020, which has additional details on the current situation.