Four days of basketball, three courts, a community tournament with over 100 teams gathered in the Sport Arena Streetball Tour finals, the first ever stop of the FIBA 3×3 World Tour professional circuit with 16 teams from 11 countries and a temporary five-star arena built at City Park Mall in Constanța.
These were the main coordinates of a long weekend attended by more than 7000 spectators which concluded the series of 3×3 outdoor basketball events in Romania in 2023.
Huge surprise at the first ever World Tour in Romania
Hangzhou from China, a rookie in the FIBA 3×3 World Tour professional basketball circuit, won the Constanța Masters title and took the grand prize of $40,000 after defeating Podgorica (Montenegro) 21-12 in the final. The event which ended on Sunday evening at City Park Mall was organized by CSM Constanța and the Romanian Basketball Federation and patronized by the City Hall of Constanța.
Five of the top 10 ranked teams in the world were present in Constanța, including the winners of the last two stops of the world circuit, Raudondvaris (Lithuania) and Antwerp (Belgium), but the final was reached by two rookie teams, Podgorica (Montenegro) and Hangzhou (China).
Featuring three of the players who won bronze medals for Serbia at the U23 World Cup in 2019, the Chinese team dominated the final following an outstanding performance by Vladimir Trajkovic, who was also named tournament MVP.
The second day of the competition also featured a spectacular slam-dunk competition, which was won by Poland’s Piotr Grabowski, present for the second consecutive year in Constanța, after also participating in the 2022 Nations League Finals. In addition to the basketball matches, the atmosphere was entertained by artists from the Metropolitan Circus, the Prestige dance troupe from Constanța and the iSports cheerleaders from Ploiești.
Children had a dedicated area with basketball-themed games at all times, fans could enjoy competitions with prizes and benefited from actions promoting physical activity. Young players had the opportunity to be around the stars of the world circuit in a surprise visit held at Mihai Eminescu National High School, where on Thursday and Friday matches took place as part of the Sport Arena Streetball finale, the national 3×3 basketball circuit.
Over 100 teams at the Sport Arena Streetball final tournament
The final stop of the Sport Arena Streetball 3×3 national basketball circuit brought together the best players throughout the regular season to duel for the 2023 season championship titles. The champion in the Men’s Open category was Team Romania, a team made up of members of the national youth team, who qualified for the FIBA 3×3 World Tour Masters stage in Amsterdam in early October.
All the finals were played in the arena set up at City Park Mall, and the players who qualified for the last act in each age category had an experience identical to that of the stars of the world circuit, with spectacular presentations in an atmosphere specific to an international event.
The 56 players ranked 1st in all age categories received the traditional champion’s jerseys from Mastercard, the main partner of the competition.
Alexandru Coconea (men) and Gabriela Irimia (women) were named the best players of the Open competition and were rewarded with a Tissot watch offered by Albini Prassa, official importer of the Swiss brand.
In the U18 category the best player of the final tournament was Robert Spoitoru, awarded with a HiFi audio system by Horizon.
Event reflected globally
The Constanța Masters brought together 16 teams from 11 countries. More than 700 players competed in various competitions that took place in almost 20 countries to qualify for the World Tour stop organized for the first time in Romania.
The event was picked up by TV stations in over 50 countries and could be watched globally via the FIBA 3×3 YouTube channel, with over 500,000 subscribers, as well as via the Olympic Channel, reaching a total of over 10 million views.
Sport Arena Streetball returns in 2024 with season 19!
The 2023 Sport Arena Streetball season, the 18th in the history of the competition, has seen more than 700 teams and almost 3000 players registered for the six tournaments. More than 1200 3×3 basketball games were played in three different cities, Bucharest, Timișoara and Constanța.
Each community event represented a true urban festival of sport and music, with the basketball matches being part of a concept that included various themed activations, competitions with prizes, special guests and entertainment.
Sport Arena Streetball returns in 2024 with the 19th season and aims to develop this urban sports festival concept in other cities in Romania.
Sport Arena Streetball events have been supported in 2023 by: Mastercard, Nike through Sporttime, Tissot through Albini Prassa, Horizon Europe, Ideal Board Games and the Romanian Basketball Federation. The official radio of the competition was Kiss FM.