Alabama Basketball Will Play In Garden

Alabama's basketball players will get the opportunity to experience magic this year. In some respects it's not what it once was, but still there is nothing for a basketball team like playing in The Garden.

The Alabama team of Coach Anthony Grant is one of four teams that will play in the championship rounds of the 2K Sports Classic at Madison Square Garden in New York. The tournament benefiting Wounded Warriors Project also includes Villanova, Purdue, and Oregon State in the 18th renewal of the pre-season basketball tournament.

In the first game of the semifinal doubleheader on Thursday, November 15, Alabama will take on Oregon State in a 7 p.m. EST tip. In the nightcap, Villanova will tangle with Purdue. Both semifinal match-ups will air live on ESPN2.

The semifinal round winners will meet on Friday, November 16 for the 2K Sports Classic championship on ESPN2, preceded by the consolation game at 5 p.m. EST on ESPNU.

Teams playing in the championship rounds have been pre-selected. Over the last nine years, 34 teams that participated in the event have gone on to compete in the NCAA Tournament that season.

Beginning with this year's event, Wounded Warrior Project is the beneficiary of the event. The mission of Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) is to honor and empower wounded warriors. WWP's purpose is to raise awareness and to enlist the public's aid for the needs of injured service members, to help injured servicemen and women aid and assist each other, and to provide unique, direct programs and services to meet their needs. WWP is a national, nonpartisan organization headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla.

The 2K Sports Classic is produced by the Gazelle Group, a sports marketing firm in Princeton, N.J.

In all, the four schools advancing to Madison Square Garden have combined for 93 trips to the NCAA Tournament.

In the 2011 2K Sports Classic, Mississippi State's Arnett Moultrie earned MVP honors after posting 19 points and 10 rebounds in leading the Bulldogs to a 67-57 upset of then-No. 16 Arizona. Mississippi State used its 2K Sports Classic success to jump start a run of 12 consecutive weeks in the Top 25 polls.

The complete bracket for the 2012 2K Sports Classic will be announced later.

Tickets for championship round games at Madison Square Garden are on sale and may be purchased by calling 800-745-3000 or on-line at

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