The clock is ticking down until professional basketball is played in Birmingham, Ala. for the first time in 12 years. With every big event comes a story – and the BBVA Compass Iron City Showdown is no exception.
The game will be held on October 2 at 7 p.m. at Legacy Arena at the BJCC, pitting the Houston Rockets against the Memphis Grizzlies in a pro basketball exhibition match. Community involvement has already begun in the form of a basketball tournament, along with other developments. There’s still plenty of time to get involved.
In the meantime, BBVA Compass has put together a timeline of events to signal the two-month countdown until tip-off.
- August 17, 2017. The Announcement: BBVA Compass and Houston Rockets landed in Birmingham to help make a surprise announcement at Parker High School in front of 800 students. With the help a star player, the bank announced it would bring the preseason game to Birmingham, between the Rockets and, at the time, an unnamed team in 2018. During the ceremony, it also was announced that BBVA Compass would take part in refurbishing an outdoor basketball court in the city.
- May 3, 2018. Birth of the BBVA Compass Iron City Showdown: BBVA Compass and the Rockets teamed up at a press conference held at the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame to announce the date, location and opponent of the BBVA Compass Iron City Showdown. Rockets legend Robert Horry helped announce the new developments at the press conference.
- June 21, 2018. Basketball beyond the game: The Colonnade Group and Faush Summit Entertainment unveiled the Iron City Hoop-A-Palooza, a 3 on 3 basketball tournament designed to welcome basketball fans of all ages and skill levels to Birmingham. The tournament is just one in a series of events and opportunities created to celebrate the BBVA Compass Iron City Showdown.
Robert Horry announces details around the BBVA Compass Iron City Showdown at the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame on May 3, 2017.
- July 19, 2018. 75 days away: With the game only 75 days away, organizers around the game came up with a list of 75 things you should know about leading up to tip-off. The list includes facts about the game, participating teams, Birmingham, and BBVA Compass, the bank responsible for bringing the game to Alabama.
- July 21, 2018. Hoop-A-Palooza tips off: The Iron City Hoop-A-Palooza came to fruition, when the tournament tipped off at John Carroll High School. CrossPoint Church will serve as the host site for additional games. This was the latest news development around the exhibition game. Fittingly, BBVA Compass Brand Ambassador Robert Horry gave his thoughts about the entire initiative that same day: "Expect a lot of excitement for the game of basketball (from Birmingham’s residents). Even though everyone thinks Alabama is a football state due to the Crimson Tide, Alabama does have a tradition of great basketball players that come out of the state. So look for fans to be excited because (professional) basketball doesn’t come to the state of Alabama too often".
"Look for fans to be excited because (professional) basketball doesn’t come to the state of Alabama too often"
For more information about the game, including ticket purchases, visit the BBVA Compass Iron City Showdown website.