Updated: Jul 9, 2019
One of the fastest growing basketball clubs in the Lower Mainland — for both boys and girls — is making their debut appearance at Bballnationals in 2019. Excel started just last year, but are already a name to be reckoned with in the basketball scene here in British Columbia. After being a longtime coach with 3D Basketball Daniel Depelteau, along with Dan Nayebzadeh and Michel Lamy, decided to go out on their own and start a club.
“It started out as the base was [the] Tri-Cities but now we’ve got lots of teams in various tournaments so people see lots of Excel and the gear, and the coaches all dressed in gear” said Depelteau, the Executive Director of Excel Basketball. “Every day now we get three to four emails wanting to join the club and asking where tryouts are.”
The club has grown to more than thirteen teams since their inception, with eight boys teams and five girls teams competing in various tournaments. The U15 Boys, which will be competing in Bballnationals, finished first in the Silver II division at the Western Canadian championships just a few days ago.
“We’re a small club that’s growing really big so we’re an outlet for a lot of the bigger clubs,” said Depelteau. “It’s another avenue. In the Tri-Cities there was no club like this, at this level.”
A girls team from Excel will be attending as well, rearranging their schedule so they could play against top competition.
“The girls are supposed to end at the end of July,” he explained, “but they're going to go to nationals as well. We’re going to rearrange our schedule in the future seasons to help grow that tournament.”
Depelteau recognizes the importance of a national club basketball tournament to help grow the game in Canada. As a new coach of his own club basketball team, he likes to be able to test his teams and build off that for future years.
“You kind of see the same teams over and over again” he said on local basketball tournaments. “This is a chance to see some teams from Alberta. There are going to be teams from different provinces. There’s going to be quality.
I think there’s a need for a national club basketball championship and hopefully the word spreads so it gets higher quality and becomes a bigger event.”
Bballnationals is coming up soon, and the deadline for registration has been extended to July 15th. Visit their website to register now!
Written by: Nick Bondi