The Wichita Wizards professional basketball team brought the crowds to their feet and rocked the house with a 115-106 victory over the Kansas City Stealth. The Kansas City Stealth came to town for the season opener of the Wizards in the opening games for both teams and their new league. The Wizards and the Stealth are both founding members of the Mid-America Basketball Association.
And opening night couldn't have gone better, said Mark Creed, Wizards CEO and founder of the new MABA league.
"The game was a great effort by both teams. It was close all the way, but our guys don’t quit and finished strong," said Creed of the hometown heroes. "It was a great game to start something that we hope to grow to be an amazing league."
In a fast-paced game full of dunks, 3-point shots, roughhousing and some rugby-style scrums on the hardwoods, the Wichita Wizards spent much of the first three quarters behind, but kept pressing until they took the lead from the Stealth and never looked back. During the final minutes of the game, their lead grew to a comfortable ten points.
The Wizards and their opponent - that used to be the Topeka Stealth before making the move to KC this spring - put on a masterclass of minor league pro basketball for the MABA new commissioner, Romio Harvey, who made the trip to see the two teams in their I-35 showdown. Harvey agreed with Creed and also
thought it was an outstanding game and the perfect way to start the new league. He stated that the Wizards organization is definitely setting the bar high for all the organizations in the league. He had a great time and looks forward to the future with great anticipation.
Creed brought professional basketball back to Wichita in 2018 when he launched the Wizards onto the local sports scene. The inaugural season for the Wichita Wizards was in 2019 when they went undefeated with a 14-0 record and were ranked number one for the final seven weeks of the season to quickly become the premier team in their former league. The team has had a successful season every year since.
The team also put up successful numbers in their season opener. Parker Austin was a buzzsaw on the court, earning his MVP with 31 points and a massive presence on defense. Fan favorite and original Wizard from the 2019 season, Kaelon Gary, followed with 26 points - including a buzzer beater that brought the crowd to its feet.
The next two weeks will have the Wichita Wizards taking on foes from Oklahoma. First away during Easter weekend, April 8 against a longtime rival, the OKC Servants. Then it's back home in Wichita for a matchup on April 16 vs the OKC Lightning. All home games are played at Friends University in their recently renovated Garvey Athletic Center.