The team’s momentum seems to have followed its new name. The Chuncheon Tigers came out of the opening round of the 2023 KWBL Wheelchair Basketball League with a three-game sweep to take the league lead. That’s a lot of momentum. The Tigers swept the previous year’s champions, Coway Blue Hills, and the defending champions, Jeju Samdasu.
The 2023 KWBL Wheelchair Basketball League, now in its ninth year, kicked off its five-month campaign with a spectacular opening ceremony at the Chuncheon Hoban Gymnasium at 12:30 p.m. on the 14th. With a total of six teams (Coway Blue Hills, Chuncheon Tigers, Jeju Samdasu, Daegu Metropolitan Government, Mugunghwa Electronics, and Goyang Holt), the KWBL Wheelchair Basketball League will play 45 regular season games in a regional tour format, starting in Chuncheon and traveling to Seoul, Suwon, Jeju, Sangju, and Goyang.
The playoffs between the second and third place finishers in the regular season will then be held on November 21 at the Namyangju Sports and Cultural Center in a best-of-three series. The season concludes with the winner of the playoffs and 바카라사이트 the first-place regular season finisher playing a best-of-three championship series at the Seongnam Indoor Gymnasium on November 28.
The opening ceremony was preceded by various celebratory performances. In particular, idol groups BXB and Busters, who performed, will become ambassadors of the Korea Wheelchair Basketball Federation and promote the appeal of wheelchair basketball to the MZ generation. “Through the Wheelchair Basketball League, we will instill dreams and hopes in people with disabilities, inspire challenges and courage, and make great efforts to improve disability awareness,” said Choi Wook-chul, president of the league, adding that the league will develop into an internationally recognized league and raise its national status.
Next, the team name launch event was held. It was an event to announce the name of the team, which was previously known as the ‘Chuncheon Mayor’s Wheelchair Basketball Team’, as well as the ‘Chuncheon Tigers Wheelchair Basketball Team’. After the opening ceremony and team name launch, the Tigers began their opening game at 2:00 pm. Their opponent was the previous year’s champions, Coway Blue Hills. It was a formidable opponent.
But with home field advantage and a new team name, the Chuncheon Tigers roared out of the gates with a fearsome powerhouse inside. The Tigers trailed 32-36 at the end of the first quarter. Coway Blue Hills showed off their offensive prowess early on, with Yang Dong-gil scoring 12 points in the first quarter alone.
However, the Tigers’ backcourt came through. Led by Cho Seung-hyun (35 points) and Kim Sang-yeol (21), the Tigers rallied in the third quarter to win 70-64, with Kim Sang-yeol scoring nine points in the fourth quarter.
After defeating the defending champions in the opening game, the Tigers’ momentum continued. After easily defeating Jeju Samdasu, one of the ‘favorites’, 74-60 in the second game on the 15th, the Tigers defeated Daegu Metropolitan Government 82-72 on the 16th to take sole possession of the league lead with three wins from three games. Coway Blue Hills and Jeju Samdasu followed the Tigers with 2 wins and 1 loss. The second half of the first round will be held at Jamsil Gymnasium in Seoul on August 12 and 13.