The Journal Gazette
Wednesday, September 15, 2021 1:00 am

Showcase Cup highlights new Mad Ants schedule

JUSTIN A. COHN | The Journal Gazette

The Mad Ants will open their 15th season with games Nov. 6 and 7 at Memorial Coliseum, against the Windy City Bulls, kicking off a campaign that will see them play 15 times at the Coliseum, nine times at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, and take part in a new Showcase Cup the G League unveiled Tuesday.

The Showcase Cup will constitute the first 14 games of the season, including four games at the Coliseum, and culminate with an eight-team tournament at the G League Winter Showcase, Dec. 19 to 22, expected to be in Las Vegas.

The Mad Ants will be in a regional pod with Wisconsin, Windy City, Cleveland, Grand Rapids, Iowa, Sioux Falls and Motor City. To qualify for the Showcase Cup tournament, the Mad Ants must either win that group or be among the top four teams that didn't win their pods.

The G League will then reconvene, teams starting with 0-0 records, and begin a truer 36-game regular season. The Mad Ants' first game will be Dec. 27 in Indianapolis against College Park and the first game at the Coliseum will be Jan. 1 against Grand Rapids.

The top six teams from each of two conferences – alignments haven't yet been announced – will qualify for the playoffs, though the league hasn't announced the format. The Ignite, which develops players fresh out of high school for the NBA, and the new Capitanes de la Ciudad de México will compete in the Showcase Cup but not the 36-game regular season.

Of the Mad Ants' 15 total games at the Coliseum, 13 will be on Fridays, Saturdays or Sundays. They'll also play on back-to-back days at the Coliseum four times.

There will be no games in Fort Wayne between Dec. 12 and Dec. 31 or between Jan. 16 and March 3.

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