Ice Cube’s fledgling 3-on-3 basketball league BIG3 is cancelling its 2020 season and fourth season overall. The news is confirmed by BIG3’s Twitter account and publicists.
Obviously, the COVID-19 has impacted all sports and while BIG3 does have a TV deal with CBS Sports, it is still very much a new league without the resources at the level of the NBA.
To date, WWE, UFC, and All Elite Wrestling (AEW) are the only sports/entertainment leagues to have run empty arena televised events (solely in Florida) since the coronavirus outbreak escalated in March. As of press time, UFC and AEW have administered COVID-19 tests to athletes, staff, and all involved with events.
Los Angeles – May 18, 2020 – In the midst of the COVID-19 world pandemic and its uncontrollable nature, the BIG3 announced today season four will return in Summer 2021. The BIG3 always wants to deliver the best for our fans under safe conditions. Due to a confluence of issues including safety, uncertainty of testing, changing government regulations, insurance and liability issues, sponsor and advertiser challenges of their own, and the changing nature of the virus itself, the decision was made to focus on a great return in 2021.
CBS Sports will continue as the BIG3’s television partner for the 2021 season with the games airing on the CBS Television Network, followed by encore presentations on CBS Sports Network.
Ultimately, we need the fan experience and the games themselves to be great. While other leagues have more immediate financial considerations, as a rising league, we need to put the fan experience above all and ensure each season is better than the one before. While we investigated many alternative scenarios, such as playing at a single location like a Los Angeles studio sound stage, the extension of the California stay at home order, California’s constant confusion and changing of the rules when combined with the multiple other issues listed above led to us to determining these scenarios were not feasible.
In addition to this decision, BIG3 is excited to announce that in partnership with Endemol, BIG3: Not in My House will be premiering sometime before the regular season begins. The BIG3, along with Endemol, was ready to proceed with this show immediately, but were faced with issues because US networks mostly cannot start reality show and studio productions until at least September. We will have to wait until network studio production and scheduling stabilizes.
“We tried everything in our power to give our fans a nice 2020 season but with a long list of obstacles, we decided to shift our focus to having a great 2021 season with our fans in the stands. Our goal from day one has always been to provide a remarkable experience full of top-level competition and entertainment,” said BIG3 co-founder Ice Cube. “With the creation of BIG3: Not in My House and more time to prepare for the season, we will definitely come back with the fire.”
BIG3 co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz added, “We are frustrated and disappointed that we can’t see BIG3 played this year. We thank CBS for working with us and extending our relationship to next summer. Cube and I can do a lot, we started this league from scratch and developed an entirely new sport, FIREBALL3. With that said, we are not infectious disease experts and we cannot control decisions of local and state governments.”
The BIG3 appreciates the support of its fans, players, coaches, staff, and sponsors throughout this process.BIG3 Basketball PR
Check out our NBA 2K20 Review: