On March 31, 2022, the Albany Patroons – who at that time were in the midst of a 28-game home unbeaten streak – took on the National Basketball League of Canada’s London Lightning, who at the time were on their own unbeaten streak.
Two irresistible forces approaching each other.
And in the end, Albany prevailed at the Armory, 97-90.
Fast-forward to March 31, 2023.
It’s Round II.
Yep, due to a last-minute schedule change, the London Lightning are bringing their current 16-5 record to the Armory, while the Patroons – who are 8-1 – are ready for them.
And once again, my loyalties are split.
See, when I’m not at Patroons games supporting the gold and kelly green, I’m the statistician and director of player clearances for the National Basketball League of Canada, where the Lightning play. And I’ve done so for the past decade.
Plus, several Patroons have actually played on the Lightning squad – including Xavier Moon and Marvin Phillips, and Micheal Ray Richardson has coached both teams. By the same token, DeAndre Thomas, who once suited up for the Lightning, also played for the Patroons in the 2017-18 season. So there’s plenty of cross-pollenation going on here.
The Lightning have won five NBL Canada championships; while the Patroons have claimed three pro basketball titles. So realistically, you’re looking at one of the crown jewels of the Canadian league facing the undisputed crown jewel of the American minor league hoops crowd.
And I’ll tell you the God’s honest truth.
I’d be happy if both teams played to a triple-overtime and finished the game with a tie.
But I guess I’ll have to wait until Friday night at the Armory to see who truly prevails.
And you know I’ll be there.
On that you can count. 😀
Talk about a dilemma…or dilemna.
Talk about pollenation…or pollination.